Therapy today. From my perspective it went well.
Oh, not so much for my lack of progress, which is lacking in so many areas, even though I am being reminded that it has only been ten months from that day and that it would be helpful if I stopped trying to shortcut my way through this. Seriously?
My sessions are supposed to be the customary hour in duration. We somehow manage to endure closer to two hours. I have to keep an eye on the clock so that I do not get a parking ticket. You get two hours and then you get a ticket. Yep.
All right, the sessions are truly worth the time and expense and I would be nowhere near where I am today without them. From the other side of the room it appears that I am considered interesting. Whatever is going on here, I am grateful for it, especially since this sort of thing, mental health care, is the time when you have to be the most careful and informed about your health care choices and it is exactly the time when you are least able to be the proactive about finding the best medical resources.
I am lucky. My therapist connected with me when I was newly in the shelter. Still in deep hiding and protection, alone, scared witless, with no resources, not money, only a bit more than the clothes I was wearing on that day. No friends, either, because no one ever knew what was happening, except for the friend in whom I confided the week before.
Here is where the interesting part comes in. This woman was there leading a support group. You see, the shelter was not a shelter with programs, it was a program that just happened to have a shelter attached to it.
I hardly remember those first days. Guess I was shocky. At least that is what I am told. I do not even remember meeting her, only vague memories that everyone had to attend these meetings. I understand now that doing so is essential to entering the process of healing, and it is pretty easy to comply because you are really not capable of making any independent choices.
So, I ended up with my therapist. It has been an uneven journey. Several months ago I just stopped going. The work was too difficult and I gave up. Well, not exactly. What I did was run away from it. The work was too hard. We were at the point where I was supposed to do things, address issues that, frankly, I would prefer to ignore for the rest of my life.
Unfortunately, healing is not in that direction and when I ran into her near the clinic, I felt comfortable enough to ask if I could return. She made an appointment for me right there and whilst I am not looking back, the process seems so slow.
I know that I am inappropriately impatient. It is not possible to repair decades and decades of a stupefyingly bad marriage, and I am clear that it was partly the marriage and partly my fault, even when you factor in the abuse. Today I talked about finding compassion for my ex-husband. I think that is important and I am pretty much there. Oh, sure, I would like to not have been damaged by the one person I should have been able to trust more than any other person on the planet. Yeah, it would be nice to come out of the other side of all of it with some resources, some measure of security. That would be great. However, these months of distance have very clearly informed me how poorly he was equipped to be married.
I loved him, and the truth is that I did not see any shred of evidence before we were married and for a year afterwards that there could ever be any problems or difficulties that we could not solve within the embrace of our love.
It is only now, with lots of talking and reading that I am able to understand how he groomed me for what was to come. And, it is my belief, that because of his own mental health issues that it most likely was not a daily conscious choice. All he wanted was to mold me into the person he could dominate. I let him. For that I take my share of responsibility. I also take full responsibility for the times I failed, the moments when I fell from my own expectations of the kind of person I wanted to be, for all the times I was not my best self.
And, because I can give him that grace, the understanding and compassion for how, in the thrall of his own personal disturbing self, that he was doing the best that he could. Mostly. I will never know why he is the kind of person he is. I will never have a clue why he was not able to be a kind and loving person, but rather chose to humiliate and hurt me, or why he was never a father to our daughter.
I thought, all those years, that if I stayed, if I did the right things, if I pleased him somehow, if I could perhaps figure out what the right things were, that everything would be fine. But, I never did anything right. On the rare occasions when I was able to perfectly follow whatever rules he had, the rules would change and there was still one more failure by me.
I will never know anything from him, but because I can try to understand, if I can continue to feel such compassion for him and his problems, if I can hold to the belief that he truly was doing the best he could, in the moment, with what he had, well, then maybe I can do all of that for myself. I am working on that.
I have a wonderful daughter, son-in-law, both of whom are so loving and supportive, even though I have never shared anything about anything with them. I have two of the best grandsons in the Universe. Mostly excellent friends, an amazing therapist and an attorney who is still working for my interests even though we are five months post divorce decree and my ex-husband is still in defiance of every order of the court. I just heard from her yesterday and she tells me that "we" are making progress and that she expects to have good news for me soon. She is such a careful and hopeful person, that is my take, but it is more that she is a great attorney. The proverbial dog with a bone, monkey with a mango, flea on a ferret...
The result, at least today, is that I might be able to fall asleep more than a few hours before I have to get up in the morning. My five-year-old grandson has joined a basketball team and tomorrow morning is their first game.
I can hardly wait and so I am off to bed, to sleep, perchance to dream, ay, there's the rub.