Sunday, March 14, 2010

Moving Along

While on the elliptical (yes, I was at the gym...a miracle in and of itself), I nearly had an emotional melt down when my "Workout or Die" playlist reached a silly song that had no business pushing me over the edge. Despite how embarrassing this is, I will let you in on the tune...(wait for it, wait for it)...The All-American Rejects Moving Along. There it is, for everyone to see. Now, this isn't what I typically "rock out" to. A while back, when I fancied myself a runner, I downloaded the "Lance Armstrong Run Longer Coaching Mix," a training playlist full of boppy and thumping tunes with the added bonus of Lance, himself, telling you to run faster...and faster...and faster! To which I reply, "You run faster, Lance." Anyway, that's how I ended up with this song on my iPod. Why did this diddy touch a nerve, you may be asking yourself?

Well, the answer to this question explains my recent, loooong, hiatus. My husband and I went through one of the most difficult times of our lives. Without getting into specifics, the ordeal involved mystery symptoms, neurosurgery, and a lot of risks. The kind of risks that found us jotting down advanced directives in a notebook I just happen to keep in my purse for those "oh, let me write that down" moments, right before he went under the knife. Needless to say, I never expected to be jotting anything like this down. Yes, we're too young to be dealing with such things. Unfortunately, there are a lot of things that we're too young for in the deck life has handed us. But this was the worst, for me anyway. The next 12 hours I would spend in agony. Will he make it? In what state will he be in? Am I strong enough to be there for him? I was in my absolute most vulnerable state. No amount of self-therapy could bring me back.

Everything, in time, occurred as well as it possibly could. We were displaced for a month in New York, recovering. In many ways, I felt like we were recovering from both the surgery and our tormented lives up until this point. We were stuck in a limbo of sorts. In our East-side sublet, we saw a lot of friends and family, who we realized we missed terribly. I also did a lot of soul searching. That old cliche about it taking something akin to hell to help you make sense of life, what you want your life to be, turned out to be my reality. Which is why I'm here now, writing. And why I was at the gym on the elliptical sobbing over that ridiculous song. It was hearing these lyrics that did it: Move along, move along like I know you do, And even when your hope is gone, Move along, move along just to make it through...

I feel like this is all very vague and overly expository, and not to mention a total cheese factory, but in order to truly move on with this experience, to make sense of my being MIA, and stay true to what I want my life to be, it feels necessary. So here I am,back from the war, with a renewed spirit and clarity that have managed to seep into just about every nook and cranny of my life. I'm living healthier, working harder, and, most important of all, thinking better (in my humble opinion). This last bit has really reshaped my work with clients...making me a better therapist. This is why I'm sharing all of this with you. I've taken the cases I've been working on in completely different directions. This is all a part of the budding psychologists' development. Life happens, even to therapists.

So, what to expect? Well, this is the last of these Barbra Walter posts about life least I sure as hell hope it is. What I'd like to do includes sharing my adventures with my current client, cutting out a stale case, and sharing my experiences taking on a few more new clients. I'll also be sharing the typical grad school hijinks that I manage to get myself in. I'm also celebrating my 30th birthday next week, so I'm sure there will be the occasional post on the psychology of aging. It'll be fun, I promise. OK, let's go!