A few months ago, my counselor asked how I can prepare myself for when she is no longer available. She assured me this does not mean she is leaving right now. I have seen enough county mental health counselors to know, they all leave eventually. They move on to other jobs…to other cities or states. And I have difficulty dealing with what I call “being abandoned” especially if it is a favorite person. My mind interprets it as “they are no longer available” but my emotions interpret it as “they have abandoned me”.
When my mother died in November 2017, I didn’t feel abandoned. Although, to be honest, I still don’t know how I feel about it. When my father died in November 2018, I imagined that this must be what it feels like to be an orphan. Although I suppose an adult can not be orphaned, emotionally I think I am still six.
In any case, below is the list of “how to prepare yourself when a favorite person abandons you” that I came up with December 2018.
- Don’t take it personal.
- It may open the door to meet another favorite person in the future.
- It is okay to allow yourself to cry about it.
- Realize and believe you are not helpless or worthless on your own.
- You do not have to blame or punish yourself.
- It does not mean you are unlovable.
- Pray you don’t come apart at the seams.
Then, this month I came up with this: O, good grief! Stop being so dramatic! It is not the end of the world. Change is the only thing that is assured.
Numbers 3-7 from the December list comes from a place of emotion. Numbers 1, 2 and the January 2019 comes from a place of rationalization. I hope when the time arrives I do not engage in what historically, I seem to automatically do…ignore the emotions. In the past, I have handled them by telling “self”: “What are you doing here? Go away, I am busy and have more important matters to attend.” They go away only in the sense I can no longer recognize them. If I can not figure it out through reason and logic, it is discounted as unreliable.
Time will tell how I will respond when the moment arrives and I will see if this preparation has been worth it.