In the midst of crazy exam, I had my last appointment with S until next fall. To say I was an emotional wreck is no exaggeration. It was so much like every other session we’ve had: laughter, honesty, tough love, goals, and some assignment I completely hated but ultimately is good for me. To all of that add tears, and lots of them.
I wrote her a card earlier that day and
bawled for an hour cried some writing it. I had trouble even putting to words all she has done for me this year. A quick run down of what I appreciate: her tough love no BS attitude, that she helped me get treatment, pushing me when I dug in my feet, dealing with my constant sass, truly caring, helping me find myself again, being exactly the therapist I needed. She is amazing at her job and I really felt she deserved to know how much she means to me. I wanted her to read it in session, so I had her do that while she forced me to work on the assignment I started the week before. I kept glancing over and saw her crying, then started crying and we were both a mess.
While we weren’t “having allergy issues,” we talked about goals for the summer. She didn’t focus on the ED stuff. Obviously I want to do well and control disordered thoughts as they come, but that being my whole summer would be so sad. Smaller goals include making a bucket list for York (which I shall talk about soon!), spending time with friends, and getting out in nature as much as possible. My favorite thing we talked about is a daily photo journal. My challenge is to take one photo a day that makes me happy, shows God’s blessing in my life, or is a part of beautiful creation that somehow has meaning to me. I also can’t obsess over editing or taking the “perfect” photo and have to limit looking at the screen after snapping and time spent in photoshop. So far, being 6 days in, I absolutely love it. I write a few sentences to go with each day and I can already tell this photo journal will be so special to document my summer. I definitely plan on posting my adventure here soon. At the end I thanked her once again and we hugged/cried some more. Walking out was so very bittersweet. I’m sad to leave her for the summer but I know I’m going to have so many stories and progress to share when I come back.
Today I met with J again for the first time this summer. I hadn’t seen her since the day I got back from residential. I was so nervous (why? I have no clue) walking back into her office! For some reason I feared that we wouldn’t click again or I would be awkward or something otherwise bad would happen. It didn’t feel weird or awkward one bit. Going into her office felt like being home again. Immediately I was so happy to be back.
It was nice to catch her up on everything that’s happened since I last saw her. I loved being able to tell her all of my progress, fun things that happened, and hopes for the future. I also was very open and honest about the struggles I’ve faced, namely my relapse. We talked about what led up to it, how serious/what it entailed, how and why I came out, what we can do to prevent another when things start going bad, and the new hope it has given me. I truly feel like I relapsed so I could learn exactly what I need to fight for. J completely agreed, and in her prayer at the end (our traditional closing) she specifically thanked God for it.
After catching we talked goals and what I need from her. Ever since residential, I’ve really learned what helps and what doesn’t when it comes to therapy. The two most helpful things, even though I HATE it, are tough love/pushing me to do my best and assignments. J said she definitely will do both. Plenty of assignments I fight against but are really for my good and J stretching me to do better are in the near future. I told her about my goals for the summer from S and we also talked about some to add. She loves the photo journal as much as I do and can’t wait to see them, especially since she enjoys my photography (a print I gave her last summer now hangs in her office 🙂 ). My relationship with God still isn’t anywhere near being repaired. I already wanted to do something to grow closer to Him again, but J helped me find specifically how I can make that happen this summer. She gave me the ACTS acronym for prayer/journaling, is having me write to Him daily, wants me to continue my happy journal, and restart the ED devotional I have. I’m looking forward to the spiritual growth I so need. Her promise to me, beyond being her wonderful self as a therapist, is giving me an assignment every week to
torture challenge me. I know having J by me this summer as I work toward health and these goals is just what I need. I am excited to see all the growth that is to come.
I am so lucky to have two very different therapists who are equally amazing for me. I thought it would be really hard switching for summer. (Would I miss S too much? Would J do enough? Would I love J too much to ever be okay with S again? Was I going to lose my mind and cry and struggle?) All of my fears have been squashed and I’m looking forward to working with J again. Her more gentle style is going to be perfect for this time where I’m not so stressed with school and everything going on. S and her no BS way is great at helping me through all of the emotions, triggers, and stressors when I’m back at school. God has truly blessed me with giving each of them at the time I need their help the most.