Today’s Happy Note: I felt like I was back to my old running self again this morning! Hooray! I did six miles — 2 warm up/2 tempo/2 cool down and felt great! Not just faster, but freer. I love the flying feeling that comes with running, and because I have been so slow and out of shape, I haven’t had that in a while. But it’s back and I’m happy. 🙂
Also walked three miles. On my marathon training plan, adapted from the Runner’s World Intermediate Plan, today was supposed to be 2 miles GP (goal pace)/2 miles tempo/2 miles GP. In what alternate universe does this make sense? Who can do that for six miles in the second week of training? Does anyone even do that ever? Any runners out there have ideas about this? I am totally confused, and for now I am just sticking to 2-3 miles of tempo running.
Today wasn’t a breakthrough day or anything, but not a bad day either. It just was. And I am okay with that. I was content and comforted just being with L. I honestly crave our little hour together every week — not to obsess over her or worship her, but because it is my special time with someone who listens. That’s why it is so devastating for me when sessions go badly; it’s my special time every week. We both know how much energy and emotional effort I put into the work of therapy.
Often, sitting there, I wonder what she thinks of me. I want to know if she thinks I am compassionate, lovely, bright, annoying. I can think any thing about her and then tell her, but I don’t get to hear what she thinks of me very often, at least not directly. One of the golden rules of being a therapist is “only reveal things about yourself (or your thoughts) to the extent that they will help the patient.” I get that, but I am curious. And I know that, as we have finally begun to understand the dynamics of our relationship (and each other), this isn’t going to work for us perfectly. I think it is clear to L how important it is for me to hear about her and to hear what she thinks and what she’s been through sometimes. It is unsaid, but we both clearly know that we need each other, even if for her it is only in a very small way (and in a much bigger way for me). You know how you can kind of feel it in your heart and your limbs when someone likes you and is becoming attached to you? Well, I feel like that with L. Maybe that is what all good therapists do, but I don’t think so. Maybe I am ascribing more importance to myself than need be. But I think she is getting attached. God knows I have been attached for quite some time now.
I feel a deep need for her approval of my whole person. The funny thing is, I already know she does approve of (and deeply care about) me, based on how we interact and what she says.
I have moved completely past the point of thinking about our relationship in even remotely clinical terms. I think that I am moving into a space where we have a much deeper relationship. A little bit hard to explain I suppose. But it is no longer doctor and patient — in fact, from the beginning I felt it wasn’t. It is still a professional relationship. But when I heard her refer to herself as “L” (her first name) the other day, I knew definitively that we are not just clinical anymore. This is my real life unfolding with her. Which is wonderful, but also means that I feel every aspect of our relationship quite intensely. I want her to believe in me. I want her to bond specially with me. I know she has many patients, but I don’t know how many of them need the closeness with her as much as I do right now. I don’t have a significant other now (or ever have) who I have really shared my life with. I have many close friendships but this is just different. I have an emotional intimacy with her that I have not shared with anyone else in many, many years (since before college started). When I think about it, there are a lot of totally reasonable explanations for why I snapped shut a bit in the last few years. That is for another post.
All I know is that I truly love and need L right now. And probably will for a long ime. It’s been almost a year now (already?) and I would be perfectly happy to spend another ten years with her, learning about myself, my way of fitting into the world, my dreams, my history. How things connect.
Today’s topics: sex and money. Not the most blog appropriate, obviously. It was a good conversation though. I felt a lot of relief. What I came away with was a new understanding of how I relate to people in my life and how I can shape and guide those relationships (consciously) so that they are more healing and more positive for all involved.
Sorry if this was vague. It is getting harder and harder for me to write about therapy, as my relationship with L solidifies. I am moving into a place where I almost feel more loyalty to her than to the blog posts about therapy. That obviously changes everything. We’ll see how I feel in the next few weeks. I may continue writing about things, I may not. I may just do it in my personal journal — I think it is important for me to sort out my thoughts about it, and I will do so in whatever way proves most healing for my heart.