On seeing a counselor

So I suppose a normal person would sweep this under the rug, but I don’t have a rug. That means it will be as out in the open as anything else I do.

What? I know I have a rug. It was a figure of speech.

Anyway, I’ve started seeing a counselor because the stress at work and at home is driving me a little nuts and I need some help figuring out the best way to handle it.

Of course, after seeing her for two weeks, I have realized that I am probably  going to have to get a different one because this one makes me feel all stabby inside. That isn’t the effect I was hoping for. What’s wrong with her? Well, for one thing she has no idea what to do with someone who has an issue with food. For another, she is absolutely insistent that I have a soul and that working on doing things to feed my soul and get me in touch with my spirituality will help me a lot.

Those of you who have had discussions with me about my soul and spirituality are ducking right now. For those of you who are not in the loop about my soul, here’s the very high level summary: I don’t believe I have a soul in the traditional sense of the word, and I do not define myself as having  any sort of spirituality. I think that people are who they are and how they are because of the chemical makeup of their physical bodies.

And I sure as FUCK don’t want my spirituality to be the focus of any sort of therapeutic plan.

Stephen, Paddy and Robin: you  just be quiet right now. We are not going to discuss how spiritual I am. I’m not spiritual, I’m observant and grateful for being alive. It has nothing to do with a  soul. I notice things that are cool in the world and point them out, in much the same way that I notice things that are wrong.

Ahem.

In addition to those issues, she seems very focused on finding a diagnosis instead of working with me on concrete ideas that I can use to get a handle on the issues I’m struggling with. Like figuring out why I have trouble letting go of people, or why I have been working for the same company for 27 years. Or why I eat instead of dealing with my feelings. She did agree with my observation that it’s probably all for the same reason, then wondered what diagnosis she should put down for me.

She suggested that she put down mild depression but, well, I’m not depressed. I’m overwhelmed and having trouble coping. Apparently being overwhelmed and having a coping deficit isn’t something that she can write down on her piece of paper. Maybe I should look it up online and let her know what it is. Should she really be asking the patient anyway?

Maybe this is normal procedure for counseling sessions, but so far I am finding her even less helpful than the  friend who suggested that I  “try being happy for a change.”

She gets one more week.

Aren’t  these all first world problems anyway? Very much so, and I have no doubt that there will be a future post about my issues with entitlement and privilege and how fucking lucky I am  to have the amazingly good life that I have had. This is about me confessing that I am such a loser that I got a counselor.

OK, OK, OK. I know. Getting a counselor doesn’t make me a loser, it makes me someone who recognizes that I need help. It means that I was  smart enough to get help instead of continuing to struggle on my own like I usually do. It means I am actually capable of learning from my past mistakes.

It also means that someone  is getting paid to encourage me to talk about my problems, so none of you have to listen for free anymore!

(It doesn’t mean that, if you love me you still have to listen.)

It’s not like I am even  unhappy once you get me out of the cesspool of despair called work. I still laugh a lot. There’s usually a genuine smile on my face. I still think I know all of the best people in the world. I still notice things like the nifty turtle cloud I saw in the sunrise this morning. I still life. I don’t even mind being single, except for the lack of affection.  But my focus is shot, I’m sleeping badly, and I can’t even read a fucking book. I need a little boost. So I am getting it.

You know it’s bad if I can’t read. I always read.

Still.

Maybe I should try just being happy for a change….Counseling isn’t cheap, and I may be unemployed soon!

An imaginary conversation about compliments

So the other night, this guy told me he likes me because our conversations are random and weird.

Oh, I’m sorry!

Why? It was a great compliment.

It was?

Sometimes I don’t think you know me at all…

You do say weird things a lot.

Right. And it’s one of my charms.

It is?

IT’S ONE OF MY CHARMS. And he said likes me because I’m weird and random. Not in spite of it.

I always look forward to hearing what your next odd idea is too.

That didn’t sound very sincere.

You know I love that you’re a weirdo.

That’s better, and don’t roll your eyes at me.

I can’t help it.

Is it genetic?

You know what I mean.

True.

So when did you meet this guy?

I haven’t.

What do you mean you haven’t?

I haven’t met him.

Did you imagine a conversation with him?

No, but if I had then I could write an imaginary conversation about actually having an imaginary conversation and my blog would explode or something.

Focus.

What?

So how were you talking to him if you haven’t met?

We met online. We’ve been texting.

Oh, God.

What?

You shouldn’t text people you don’t know. There’s no telling what you’ll say.

I know! It’s great!  Why are you looking at me like that?

Why is it great?

Because you know what I’m like in person…

Smart?

No…I mean, yeah…but no…

Funny?

Funnier than you are..

Probably. What were we talking about again?

That I’m weird in person, and not necessarily in a good way like when I text.

Oh, you’re probably the same both in person and in texts.

Really? Shit.

OK, Miss Consistent..why are you good weird when you text and bad weird in person?

Because.

Ah. Well. I can’t argue with that!

You can’t? Damn.

Weirdo.

Because in person I’m just awkward and silent. In writing, there are always words, at least.

See? I knew you could use your words.

Not very well in person. I’m a dork in person.

You’re a dork when you text, too. In a good way.

You’re just humoring me.

You’re a lot of work, you know.

I know. You’re a good sport about it.

I was kidding.

No you weren’t, but thanks for saying so.

You didn’t tell him about blow jobs did you?

Uh..why was that the first thing you thought I’d talk about?

You did, didn’t you? Are you nuts?

It’s endearing.

It’s crazy. Talking about blow jobs is not endearing. You can’t just tell random strangers about how you feel about sex.

I like sex.

Of course you do. Everyone does. You just can’t talk about it when you haven’t met someone before.

Why not?

Because.

That’s not a good reason. There’s nothing wrong with blowjobs.

No, obviously I’m a fan.

So, why can’t I have a conversation about it? It’s not like I walk up to random people on the street and tell them I swallow.

It’s a social convention.

That’s silly, what is it 1802 or something?

It gives people the wrong idea about you.

No, actually it gives them the right idea.

I’m not sure you understand how talking to men works.

I’m pretty sure I do.

But that isn’t the part of the man you want to stimulate before you’ve even met.

The brain part?

You’ve met men before.

Yes. Oh, you mean that men think with their dicks?

No. But they don’t need to be reminded of sex every minute. They’ll think about it plenty on their own. Maybe you should try to engage their brains before you go straight for the genitals.

I’ll text him back and tell him I don’t really swallow. I’m really a spitter. I worship at the altar of  the rag of redemption.

The what?

The rag of redemption. It’s what non-swallowers spit into..

Why do I feel like that’s a whole story?

Because it’s a whole story. A funny one.

Do not tell the guy you’ve never met that story.

Well I have to if I’m going to explain my change of heart about swallowing.

Just. No. Seriously.

You’re so easy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Curiouser and curiouser

This is what happens when I wake up curious in the middle of the night…
–Me

When I wake up in the middle of the night I sometimes find myself heading down a rabbit hole.

It might be a rabbit hole involving a book, or a niggling idea that wants poking at, or even a series of messages needing to be sent. I do love writing at night, and I am appallingly indiscriminate about it at times.

Oh, the late night blogs and text messages.

If you are on my late night “send” list, I apologize. I can’t be held responsible for what I might do and say under the influence of insomnia. I do try to redirect myself to other forms of writing as much as I can, but I am only and eternally human.

Sometimes I wake up in the middle of the night with a weird question in my head.

More than once that has resulted in purchasing books I might otherwise never have read.

Or sometimes it’s a song or movie I can’t quite place. Googling ensues. What did people do in the middle of the night before the Internet? Did insomniac movie buffs just have to have unanswered questions about how many movies Bette Davis was in where she played twins?

Two, but I always think it’s three because I can’t ever remember that “Dead Ringer” is the movie it actually is.

Last week I woke up during the night and looked at my phone to see what time it was. It was after 0200. I saw I had a message on a dating app. I put my phone down and snuggled back into bed without reading it because it was the middle of the night. But then I was too curious about what the message said to go back to sleep. Which is silly, because usually the messages are really boring.

I picked up my phone and read the message and the sender’s profile. He looked just like the Dude. He was up in the middle of the night making donuts and new friends. We chatted for a little while about how the Dude’s sweater is different from Starsky’s sweater, why he would love Burning Man, and the awesomeness of kilts.

He said “when you went to bed a few hours ago did you think you’d end up talking to someone about Burning Man in the middle of the night?” “Not really, but this is what happens when I wake up curious in the middle of the night.” Then I went back to sleep.

It was an odd, unexpected sort of a thing. The sort of thing that happens when you give in to curiosity.