Last week I wrote a blog about a communication problem that i was having with my therapist. Remember? I always thought that I was an artist but I hadn't done a painting in months. I had been suffering from depression. Literally crawling around on my hands and knees and sniveling every morning. Apathy was sucking me under. I was a mess. So I started seeing a psychologist. I found out that depression is a common reaction to to Parkinsons Disease. That made sense. Parkinsons lands a blow to egos. Who wouldn't be depressed?
Things went fine but during one of my visits she told me that I should go see a psychiatrist in order to get a prescription for an antidepressant. Yikes. I didn't like the idea of taking another med to treat my depression. I'd tried three antidepressants already and they all gave me insomnia, left me constipated and made me even more depressed. If all I wanted was to pop some pills I could have seen someone else. I wondered why I was seeing her. I decided to make that the topic of my next appointment but she cancelled the next appointment. It was an emergency. Last week she said that i was angry at her for cancelling the appointment. I told her that I wasn't angry with her. She said that I was in denial. But she was wrong. It was awkward. I had left her office feeling confused.
A week went by. I had a noon appointment. It was raining. I had a sneezing and coughing and itchy eye cold. It would have been easy to just cancel. No. I had to go to the appointment. I had to resolve this situation. I decided to ride my bicycle to her office. My chest felt a little tight. Maybe it was stress.
Across the street from her office there is a school . Out by the street there's a row of bike racks. I locked my bike to one of the racks and walked over to the office. When I got there I blew my nose about ten times found a chair in the waiting room and waited.
When she came out to get me she asked me how I was. I told her that I had a bad cold. I sat down on her couch. She put a box of tissue in front of me. There was no point in stalling. "This is going to be my last session"
She looks at me and blinks. "Every other week you bring that up".
I blew my nose and dropped the tissue into the waste basket "Every week I wonder why I am here".
She says."You want to get well but you don't want to take a pill. You want to find a natural cure but in order to do that you have to resolve the specific issue that caused the depression".
Here's what I knew: "I have Parkinsons. Having Parkinsons makes me depressed".
She seemed upset. I asked her "Are you o.k.?"
"This isn't about me it's about you"
I said "I had painters block and you got me painting pictures again. You did that. But you can't cure Parkinsons Disease".
I closed my eyes. I needed to think.
Something had happened to our relationship. I suppose that I could have mentioned that I wasn't angry over the cancelled appointment again. There would be no way to prove that I wasn't angry. It was sort of silly. In my heart I knew that my sessions weren't working out. We were debating not healing. It wouldn't work.
She said "Have you made up your mind about whether you are going to stop coming back?"
"Yes. I'm leaving"
She got up and walked to the door. Opened it and stood off to the side. I did start painting again. She did that. I reached out to shake her hand. She withdrew her hands and put them at her side.
"What? No handshake?"
I walked out to the waiting room and put my shoes on. Then my gloves. I looked down the hallway. She was sitting at her desk.
"Happy New Year."
It had stopped raining. I went over to the bike rack and took off the lock. The window of one of the class rooms was open. I could hear children talking and laughing. I thought about all of those beautiful children who died in Newtown Connecticut. It was sad.
I needed a break from all of this.