5 May 2014 Comments Off on The “Ouch” That Saved Me

The “Ouch” That Saved Me

I’m Blogging Because Mental health matters

 

When I was 20, I dropped out of college and felt lost.  Confused and sad, I went to a therapist. When she saw me, the first thing she said was “Ouch!”  I knew right away that she got me.  That I wouldn’t have to spend hours explaining myself  and the confusing relationship I was having with my boyfriend because she understood.  Here was an adult acknowledging and validating how awful I felt without judging, lecturing or shaming me.  Here was a place to come to where I could find out why I was so sad and be seen over and over and over again.  My therapist compared how I felt to “a spider’s web” and said that, in time, we would unravel the spider web together.  Suddenly, I no longer felt alone.  I kept asking myself, “ How could talking to someone and having them listen make me feel so much better?  How could having someone accept my sadness and confusion shift me into a more hopeful view of myself and my world? ” This was powerful stuff and I just wanted more.  Week, after week I noticed subtle shifts in myself. I became less sarcastic and spoke up for myself when others offended me.  I felt more confident and hopeful and navigating the world of feelings and relationships seemed Easier. After almost a year, I went back to school with a lot more self-esteem and clarity.  I even graduated with honors two years later.   When it came time to pick a career, I thought back to that first session with my therapist who said “ouch.” I decided that if she could make me feel that much better in one session, I would love to do that for someone else. So, for the past 23 years, I have. I have the honor of paying it forward every time I sit with someone in my office and it still feels amazing to watch them feel seen and understood. When times are tough, it is so important to attach ourselves to a loving presence who can guide, accept and companion us on our journey towards ourself.

I’m blogging because Mental Health Matters