My name is A. I could write out a long list of what A stands for to me but maybe I’d save that for another day. Today’s not about who I am or who I want to be, it’s about what goes on in my head. My trail of thoughts and how I went about trying to ‘fix’ this. It’s about my therapist.
For a long time I’ve had thoughts floating about my mind. Images constantly popping up in my head. I’ve had scenarios constantly playing on repeat. I’ve had emptiness. So many feelings closely related to bitterness and it was beginning to overwhelm me. So I decided to ring up a therapist I found in the yellow pages. It seemed smart, more like sensible. I mean, what could go wrong? I wasn’t much of a talker. Neither was I particularly good at expressing my feelings but I knew I had a flare for the dramatic so this proved interesting. Or so I thought.
It was 12pm already and I had only just crawled out of bed. As late as I was I knew I had to shower and make myself seem well put together. It’s a lot less boring if I walked in looking as untidy as my thoughts. I mean, I was paying for this session so I might as well make her work her brain a bit. Her? Who was she? Miss Stephen. I knew she had to be single. I mean, who wants to be married to a mind reader anyway?
After about half an hour I had successfully rushed through my morning ritual and set off for my 1pm appointment. It wasn’t until I walked through the long steel cages they called a gate and the extremely creepy front door that I began to question my decisions. I considered turning around but it was too late. My name had been called already.
*Miss Emily Peterson to room E13*
I almost cracked a smile seeing as my name started with an E and the next letter ‘m’ was indeed the 13th letter of the alphabet. Was this intentional or maybe just a coincidence? Stay focused Emily, this is how they get you thinking and next thing you’d go crazy.
I followed the grey signs plastered along the white walls until I found the door. For a moment there, I thought I was walking through a mental institution. After knocking, I was called in and that’s when the real terror began.
After what seemed like an excuse of an introduction, she’s telling me to sit and talk but, I can’t be calm. I can’t sit down. I can’t speak out but I can’t hold back. Say something you coward.
‘For a while I’ve been…’
For a while I’ve been what? Was I Lonely? Sad? Happy? Beyond glad? I’m pretty sure I practised my opening speech. I knew each word and each phrase. Each silent moment, when to emphasise on short dramatic delays. I knew what to say so why have my words now decided to fail me?!
All this while she stared at me like she too knew what I wanted to say. Like I was transparent and my mind was laid apart to be read. But not once did she make a sound or change her facial expression.
‘For a while I’ve been having thoughts…’
“See a therapist” they said. “You’ll feel better” they said. “You won’t know how to construct sentences which specifically convey your emotions at the time” they didn’t say. I shouldn’t have come here. There was no point. This place belonged to mad people..people who had no control over their thoughts. I on the other hand was sane. I had just been having thoughts and I mean, we all have thoughts. It’s what makes us human..what keeps us going. At the end of the day, the human brain would always be…
‘Would you like to describe your thoughts to me Miss Peterson?’
‘My thoughts? Umm..they’re…’
I keep trailing off and this must be annoying but Miss Stephen didn’t seem to mind. She was almost smiling depending on the angle you decided to look from. I wish I could leave, run away, disappear. How do I explain the voices in my head and images at the back of my mind? Common Emily, it’s not that hard to speak, you paid for this.
I hesitated a bit before explaining how hard it was to speak to people I barely knew. Because I once spoke to the people I did know and they turned their backs on me. I shouldn’t have that repeatedly done over and over again. I couldn’t let go but I wanted to be free and it hurt. I couldn’t trust anyone but I needed to trust her and it was hard.
The woman in front of me waited patiently for my ramblings to come to halt. She handed me tissues and a glass of water for when I needed to cool off some of the steam resulting from inner pain. It was after this she said to me ‘Miss Peterson, you are messed up. You could sit across me and give excuses as to why you can’t talk about your hurt. You could also decide not to utilise the time you willingly paid for to spend with me but you cannot deny the fact that you are messed up. Speaking to me might not fix you up but carrying such a heavy baggage is definitely going to break you into so many pieces, it’ll be impossible to reassemble you”. Not once have I ever had anyone look at me straight in the eye and speak to me with so much sincerity. I can’t believe I thought a little make up and a semi formal outfit would stop a trained expert from reading me. So I started to speak
“For a long time I’ve had thoughts floating about my mind. Images constantly popping up in my head. I’ve had scenarios constantly playing on repeat. I’ve had emptiness. So many feelings closely related to bitterness and it’s beginning to overwhelm me”
And I told her
About the myriad of emotions
The unforeseen complications
I spoke about the thoughts in my head
A burden I could no longer bear
The images plastered at the back of my mind
Scenes from the past constantly on rewind
From the memories I had failed to
To how I overstepped boundaries in order to temporarily play someone else’s empress.
I spoke about the fingers trapped within my tangled curls
The hands wrapped around my waist
The times I wanted to curl up in a ball and hurl
And let’s not forget the sweet poisonous fumes I was more than eager to taste.
I told her about the reason behind this salty liquid which oozes out of my eyes at night
My fears, my worries, the multiple reasons why I write
From each sober thought to every drunken whisper
The times where my heart felt so ice cold, my physical form would involuntarily shiver.
I spoke about forbidden conversations
The list of rules and a line up of each and every runaway destination
About sweet nothings and unfeasible proposals
The point where I thought it was high time I got rid of my morals.
I told her about emotions running deeper
How I often stare and let my mind wander
From what if’s to suppose it was
It’s gone a bit overboard, I can’t continue, not without cause
The times where I let my imaginations run a bit further.
I spoke about carelessness, remorse and denial
But more so the new definition I had given to the word betrayal
About nostalgia, possession and self deceit
But for some reason not once did I speak about regret.
I told her about the smile across my face that only I could understand
The glances across the room
I swear I kept repeating that this whole thing was unplanned
About every situation, every unwise invitation
From one scenario to the next. This is all one big compilation.
I spoke to her about letting go
Because in the midst of all this, my highs never seem to outweigh my lows
About faded feelings. It’s not me it’s you
Unrequited love…there isn’t just one to consider, there’s two.
I told her about trust and affection and friendship
About why I liked the word situationship
About every sultry word than tasted sweeter by the second
Every turn, every cut and every hurdle
Every omg I miss you, could you please swing by my place tomorrow
From when the passion burned hot with a blue flame
To when the lights went out and I was forced to wallow there in my shame.
I spoke about continuity and how it sounded foreign
Because my angels and demons would constantly quarrel
About right and wrong, black and white
The difference between good and bad
I spoke about everything about nothing
But most importantly, what moving on meant to me
Today, I told my therapist about you.