One day this past week I was reading a book with a half an eye on the movie ‘The Incredible Hulk’, that was playing on TV. I wasn’t paying too much attention to it when I happened to look up at some scene that was playing out when I heard the words
Those two words struck me to the core. In that moment I realized I had never heard those words before. The two words I needed to hear many times as a child but never did. All I remember hearing were variations of these words, ‘go to your room until you quit crying’, ‘buck up’, ‘fight your own battles’, don’t bother me’, and so on.
This week I talked to my therapist about it. Prior to having these words strike me in a different way I’ve struggled with the idea that sometimes therapy feels like I need to meet some performance standard. I understand the need for goal setting in therapy but it has also became somewhat of a hazard for me. When I don’t feel I’m performing how I should, fail.
When I talked to her about how I never heard those words as a kid I got brave and told her how I don’t think I’ve heard ‘it’s ok’ in therapy either. How sometimes it feels performance oriented.
I understand the therapists’ need to make sure we are moving along and her need to feel that what she is doing is effective and if not, maybe we need to change things up. When we were talking about this she said she knows that most of my stuff is not a quick fix.
I know she has told me ‘it’s ok’ in some form or another when I struggle with reactions and such. Usually it’s in the form of ‘it’s normal to feel that way considering what happened’, or ‘how could you know any different if you weren’t taught that’, blah blah…
I’m sure these are all forms of ‘it’s ok’ and are validating in some way (or not) but they are wrapped up in fancy wrapping. The trouble is the words get lost in the fancy wrapping and I don’t hear them. Sometimes I get lost in all that therapy speak.
Some days I just need a simple ‘it’s ok’.
I felt we clicked in our conversation this week. I felt not only did I click with her but that she also clicked with me.