I had two therapy session this week because I was so distressed after the first one that I couldn’t imagine carrying that with me for a whole week. At the second one, on Wednesday, E and I explicitly talked about the need for my very young, babyish self to feel safe and cared for, to have the sense someone would care for her, wouldn’t let her fall. It seems like she gets how alone and abandoned I’ve felt.

Late Wednesday evening, I think about how shaky I feel about managing the strongest emotions on my own. I text her, hoping she will provide some caring words for that baby girl.

If you can offer some reassurance over the next couple of days, I think that would be very helpful, especially while I am working to build up my ability to reassure myself.

(Is that okay to ask??!?)  

Then I go to bed. And Thursday morning she responds

It is okay to ask. And okay to receive. I’m here, deeply invested in helping you experience a deep sense of belonging, care, and assurance that you matter. Have a lovely day.

Hm. That’s good, right? Except the “Have a lovely day,” which not only sounds like something someone might say to you at Starbucks, but also makes me feel feel like she hasn’t been paying attention to how I’ve been feeling.

She’s there, she says, deeply invested in my sense of belong, care and assurance that I matter. But then I don’t hear anything all that day. And that “lovely day” nags at me. At lunchtime on Friday, I text her again.

I don’t have lovely days (yet). I get through difficult days, trying to make changes that will lead to lovely days. I’m tired and overly sensitive and my back hurts and I can’t sleep well. I cam trying through the best I can, which isn’t always very well.

 I know, I’m being pathetic, but I am frustrated and feel crummy.

Ouch. Easy it isn’t, rewarding it may be, deserving of your efforts, absolutely. I’m sorry for your struggle (sorry as in compassion, not pity). I wish you several moments of awareness of lovely in the midst of your struggle.

I agree, she is right. I can be aware of the good moments in the middle of all the challenges. I tell her that. Then I add.

… when you think of it from time to time, please send reassurance. I hate asking but the youngest parts need it for sure.

Do you see that as a request? I mean it as a request. I meant the earlier one as a request too. But just but in case she didn’t get it the first time, I am trying to make it very clear. Do you think that’s not clear? And didn’t she tell me it was okay to ask?

I make my request at lunchtime Thursday. On Friday, I receive a text about how hot it is. On Saturday, nothing.

Maybe she’s sick. Maybe her husband is sick. Maybe there is a problem with her son. Do you think? No, me neither.

Okay fine, she doesn’t want to provide reassurance. But she used to. And she said she wanted to. So why no response now? What are the rules? Did they change?

I do not understand what is happening, not at all. But I can’t keep doing this. It is not helping me. It does not help me concentrate on my own life and my own healing. Instead I am checking my phone too often. I am obsessing our relationship, a relationship is not supporting me anymore. It  used to, but something changed. I don’t know what. I don’t know why. But it has changed.

The thing is, I want to get better, and all this feels like such a distraction. I do not want to keep begging for something that isn’t coming. I hate that. It is just a repeat of what I’ve done a thousand times with my mother, chasing after something that isn’t coming. I need this to stop.

walk away