After voting, I'd bicycled to therapy, tracing my own river valley downstream before cutting across the triangular peninsula and heading up the other. My new-found red locks fluttered behind me in the breeze. I started as I usually did, covering the things which had happened since my last visit that I thought might be of note. I dwelt on one, in particular, musing that I needed to work on what the answer might be. She concurred, but I continued, elaborating what was on my mind. "The answer is exactly that. You don't need my help."
Minutes later, though, she informed me it was her turn as I finished. "This is the first time I've done this," she started, before explaining she'd resigned. I was the first client she'd told. When she pointed out that her suggestion of who might best replace her for my care might be ignored, I pointed out my willingness to be assertive on my own behalf. So perhaps it should have come as no great surprise when she asked if I even needed to be seeing anyone at all.
"Maybe I'm done." "I think you're done."
Just shy of 2 years since stepping into her office in the previous building, I'd gone from a confused, boyish-looking person still trying to flesh out who I was, to a woman she again described as empowered. It was especially true when it came to executing items required to simply be the person I find myself to be, but I could hardly take sole credit for getting to that point.
There were friends buttressing me in my moments of weakness. There was the community of peers I'd found, both local and remote, who shared details of their similar journeys -- successes, failures, and mundanities. There was the spouse who continued to find ways to redefine who we are together as the ground shifted under her, and the two families who offered support free of judgement. And of course, her, my therapist, who had always found things to say that motivated me to acknowledge and address shortcomings when I might have otherwise tried to just kick them under the rug.
In a world of possibilities, I'd considered the previous evening what limits mine might have. Like a car that did not need to be refueled, sitting at the entrance to a coursing, flowing freeway, I felt like the answer might be bounded in a manner I wasn't capable of comprehending. Of all the courses possible, I'll be taking just one. I'm not sure where it will end up, what detours it will require, what hazards it will entail. But it is a trip I undertake with the intent to pay forward the support that got me this far.