I saw a therapist yesterday. She’s trained in EMDR. She was doing the background work I guess. I’d seen her once before with my husband. Her office is in the city. It’s large, filled with pretentious art and expensive looking ornaments. She liked my husband, he in his expensive suit. Calm and assured. She glanced approvingly over her Manila file at him. I sat beside him with a top on that had three quarter length sleeves so part of my tattoos were exposed. I wear a few necklaces, a few bracelets. My blonde hair had residual pink highlights in it. I was wearing sandals with bright pink toenails. She looked less enthused at me. But I’m used to that, especially in the city. And it amuses me that people are surprised at how different my husband and I look together. As though we just bumped into each other on the street and started walking together.
The next time I missed my appointment because my anxiety was too much. I couldn’t get a park, I got stuck in the one way system, I became distressed so I left.
When I saw her yesterday I decided to dress more smartly but of course still within my style. So black trousers, a teal top and a material version of a biker jacket (as opposed to my leather one). As I sat in the waiting room I saw her eyes study the silver Alice band in my hair (forgot that one!) and then in her room her eyes drifted to my feet. Flip flops, with glittery purple toes. She didn’t look like the sort of lady to compliment my polish!
She asked how I had been in a tone that was rehearsed and disingenuous. Regardless I found myself releasing like a tyre being deflated. I spoke non stop for 40 minutes. Frankly I didn’t care what she thought about me. She was the first person that would be forced to listen for the next hour. All of my jumbled thoughts, my fears, my failings. The stress, the juggling act, the feeling of being conflicted because I can appreciate how lucky I am. The guilt, the shame, the anger, the exhaustion. Feeling lost, adrift. Alone. Needing direction, needing answers, needing space. My kids, my fears for my kids, trying to be a good parent, trying to deal with all these emotions, my mental health, my nightmares, the tears came and I cried while I spoke. I talked until the feelings became so overwhelming I could feel myself shutting down at last.
The therapist nodded her head. Then she said she could give me an idea for panic attacks. A breathing exercise. We tried it and I asked her if she used it if she panicked, she looked at me incredulously and said, I don’t panic. I then asked asked her if she had any tips for crying in public. She suggested heading into a public toilet. Not entirely helpful.
I thanked her for her time, she gave me the bill and I left.
Honestly it could have been someone waiting for a bus that asked me how I was that day, I guess I was fit to burst.
Needless to say, I won’t be going back, even if she’s really good at the EMDR bit. Although I let go, I didn’t feel right there and her looks weren’t exactly welcoming.
I feel good for the download though. It’s amazing how much I carry around with me. I could do with finding some solutions though.