|nothing is worth clinging to|
This week has been an odd combination
of beginnings and endings.
Starting a new job
is always stressful
and this one has been made more so
by the realisation that
by the end of next week
all the other OTs are off on leave
and I will be left on my own
to hold the fort.
It helps that Cecelia was there
to train me on tuesday
and the other thing
that has been spectacularly helpful
is that my brain-fog seems to have lifted.
Usually my memory is teflon-coated -
I'm not quite at the stage
where you would call me
but I'm getting there.
And I assumed for a long time
that this lights-are-on-no-one's-home thing
was part of my personality.
But suddenly, with all my powder and
what-not from this trichologist,
I have energy
and fuck me dead but I'm also
thinking straight and remembering details.
I actually don't feel like myself.
Saying good-bye to all my clients
at my other job
has been hard.
But I'm happy to be leaving.
I was at the shops with a client
and got stuck at the cash register
after she discovered she had no funds
in her bank account
and had to go running back and forth to the bank,
making phone calls
and trying to transfer money on her iPhone.
I had to stay at the counter
being verbally abused
by all the other people
lining up to pay for their things,
while the shop assistant
told everyone within ear shot
that we had no money to pay.
I happened to be seeing my therapist
that evening, which is not the usual time
and I had specifically told this client
that I could not run-late today,
but of course
In the end I paid for the things
and her flat-mate gave me the money
which was definitely a boundaries issue
but by that time I just wanted to get out of there
away from all the cranky and self-righteous customers
and out into the afternoon traffic.
Sometimes when people really annoy me
I think about the idea
that the people that come into your life
reflect the parts of you that need to be healed
and I imagine them
standing waiting for me
on a hill-top
holding a puzzle piece wrapped up in gift wrap
and tied up in ribbon.
They smile in a way that people never really smile
here you go Kathleen,
you left this piece with me.
and sometimes I feel less annoyed
but other times, I don't.
I was driving my brother's car that day
and of course
much fun was had
setting off the car alarm at random
and I almost melted
because the air-conditioning was not working
and I did, in fact, have a meltdown over the phone
after I had phoned my Mum and she told me to
"just wind down the windows"
like I was some kind of idiot.
Apparently Michael drives with the windows down
and does not need air-conditioning
because he is so well schooled in how to
just put up with it
and he must be some kind of martyr or superhero
because after crawling through peak hour traffic
for 1.5 hours
in the heat
I was in a pool of my own sweat
dizzy and nauseated and my voice
went all raspy when I finally made it to see my therapist
and on that day, of all days
in her building was not working either.
I had a present for her
because it was my last, or maybe second last
and I had bought her this little ornament
made out of fine bone china
in the shape of a paper crane.
And when she finished
popping the bubble wrap
and finally unwrapped it
she said, oh doesn't this have some kind of meaning?
And apparently origami paper cranes
do have different meanings
depending on their colour,
and I was horrified
that I had put such thought into the gift
and it had some meaning that I was completely unaware of
and I was very
because what is it with therapy and everything
having to be so damn symbolic?
Somehow this whole thing
was synonymous with one of my most
hated aspects of therapy
which is the fact
that whether you like it or not
everything you say is interpreted
and nine times out of ten it is completely
misconstrued into something it isn't.
but occasionally you might be safely babbling away one minute
and the next somebody has taken what you thought you were saying
and shown you some other side to it
that is uncomfortably true and revealing
and there is nothing more to do
but sit there being exposed and vulnerable and uncomfortable.
A paper crane
that is not made out of paper
has no hidden meaning whatsoever,
other than the fact that I like the way it looks
and thought you might too.
They had a lunch at work
to say good bye to me
and one of the nuns
read a prayer which talked about
my "gentle smile" and sense of humour.
Then nice but very inaccurate things
were said about me.
I wish I really was this smiling person
everyone was talking about
because she sounds a whole lot happier
than the real me.
I saw one of my clients
for the last time
and when I left
she was crying with these
and I've never heard her cry like that
apart from when her friend died.
I felt absolutely awful
to the point where
I wondered what the hell
the point was
in trying to help anyone
when you seem to end up
harming them so much,
when you eventually have to leave
and I really felt
like it would have been better
if I had never met her in the first place.
My father's hourglasses were visual evidence time is a substance.
As is the case for all elements and substances -- time changes, leaves, evaporates.
Eventually most everything deteriorates or disappears, especially life, in all its forms. What endures is a concept or theory of infinity, the belief or faith in
an eternity. Arrogantly we think time belongs to us.
But time is independent and cannot be restrained - we neither own nor control it. We only inhabit its spaces as granted to us.- Alida Brill