Previously on the therapist…
After too many sleepless nights to count and another appointment with Richard, I struggled to stay awake. I’m not sure how much longer I can keep this up; trying to solve other’s problems when under the surface, I was one giant time bomb ready to explode.
If anyone needs a therapist, it’s me.
It was a sad irony that continued to haunt me. I could solve other’s problems, but I could never seem to fix my own. At the same time, I’m pretty sure it’s this very job that gives me the courage to get out of bed every morning. They say that helping others eases our own pain. I believe this is true.
Today, Richard began to open up about his childhood, which was more difficult than I could have ever imagined. He was abused as a child by parents who were hardly around. He often went to his best friend’s house after school, hoping to escape the pain, but lost his friend to a drunk driving accident at only seventeen. I could only imagine the pain that would come with loosing a friend to a reckless, irresponsible driver who should never have gotten behind the driver’s seat to begin with.
Little by little, I’m beginning to learn his story, and discover the demons of depression and anxiety that he battles on a daily basis.
It seems that so many of our battles start in our youngest years, as our experiences and personalities mix to create the person that we are today. I still remember the day that my dad walked out on us. My mother begged him not to go, as my youngest sister cried. My older brother tried to be aloof, but I found out later that he took it the hardest of all of us.
I suspect that my dad leaving may have something to do with my difficulty in forming relationships. Psychologists have said that we learn through imitating those around us. Without a healthy relationship to imitate, how could I be expected to form one of my own?
I don’t mind it though. The extra time gives me the chance to think and reflect; something that’s almost as essential as breathing to me. There’s a familiarity in the solitude. I know what to expect from it.
The same can’t be said about people.
I often wonder how God creates plans for us when He knows we’re so prone to screw them up. Why does He allow us the privilege of carrying such great responsibility in the midst of our fallen state? How can we be image bearers of God when we can barely keep up our own image?
These are the things that weigh on my mind when I’m alone too long with only my thoughts to keep me company.
I climbed into bed and pulled the sheets over my head, trying to shield myself from the storm that was making it’s way into my mind. There was a time to analyze my life. This wasn’t it.
Now was the time to get some sleep. I have a big day tomorrow with a new patient, in addition to my regular appointments with Richard.
If I wanted to be of any help I would need to be well rested and alert; which meant that I would somehow need to catch up on a week of lost sleep overnight.
When my head hit the pillow, I wasn’t sure I would be able to do it.
The next morning, I came to the realization that I could.
©Courtney Whitaker, 2016
I was so happy to have Courtney help out with the series. It takes a brilliant writer to be able to pick up from where another stopped and run with it! Thanks again Courtney.
Lesson for the day: It doesn’t hurt to ask for help when you need it!
Have a pleasant weekend! xoxo