So, this happened. I was struggling, trying to understand the feelings of fear that had been generated by my projections upon her. She asked me to try to get grounded, centered. When I stilled myself, and quieted a bit, I could feel her. I was thinking about something else, then felt this undeniable pressure, heat, not painful heat but cool and hot at the same time, a pure stream of mentholated energy coming in from the left side and wrapping around me, penetrating my chest, as real as the clothes on my back, as real as her sitting across from me. Pressure, color, warmth, tangible substance, surrounding and filling my core, and I could feel the fire in me rise up to meet it.
I am a scientist by training. I believe in evidence, quantification, experience; concrete concepts yielding repeatable results. I grudgingly allow for the world beyond those things because my experiences, unquantifiable and outside the reach of proof, have illuminated that world. But I still look with a narrowed gaze at the phenomena of the heart, of the soul; always ready to question, to doubt. It almost offends me, the presence of that world, because I am always challenged by it, dared by it to engage and embrace it. And I resist, because what kind of scientist would I be if I didn’t?
But, all that said, I will sign my name to this: that feeling was real, it came to me unbidden, made its way in before I knew it was coming, and it grew. And I could touch it with my own heart. And I knew it came from her. Not because she is the magical therapy fairy, but because she is a human being who can gather and project her energy, and whether she was doing it intentionally at that moment or not (and I won’t presume, but I’d place a bet), it was her.
(Inner Scientist: that’s probably just a useful delusion, but hey, it’s been a rough year, we’ll let her have it.)
(Just occurred to me that it’s entirely possible that the Inner Scientist is actually the Inner Fear Person with a diploma. But god, don’t tell her that, it’d kill her.)
I am not in love with my therapist, nor obsessed with her, or overly dependent, or infatuated, or distracted by her. I do not wish to be her lover, her friend, or her family (I’m occasionally her child, but most of the time that’s on purpose.) But in this moment in my life I love her as deeply as I have ever loved anyone, albeit in a very specific way. I adore her. I think she’s beautiful. When she enters a room I get a ridiculous case of the puppy wag. I think she hung the fucking moon. And it doesn’t embarrass me to admit it, because I know its genesis, and am conscious in its creation.
I am in the midst of transference: sweet, terrifying, fascinating, painful, and miraculously healing. I have entered, knowingly and willingly, into a relationship of absolute trust with another human being. And by absolute trust, I don’t mean that I always interact with her in a trusting way (kinda one of the reasons I’m there), but that she has established, through her behavior, words, and most importantly her energetic and emotional attunement (oh yeah, get on board, we’re going full lingo on this one), that she can be trusted. Not perfect–just completely worthy of trust. And the times that I have opened myself to her, she has met me with integrity and kindness, and, yes, love. And those times have been among the most transformative of my life. There are several moments of deep healing in our time together that I will never forget, moments which left me profoundly relaxed and securely rooted, with a soaring heart. Moments which had minimal active cognitive content, other than being able to process the event and understand its place in my healing. Moments which have done more to change my perspective than years of talking, thinking, struggling.
I have been changed, I have seen and felt new ways of being, I’ve glimpsed a new land. It’s not mine yet, I know nothing of its geography, but I know it exists. I will let it sit, and see what happens six months from now, see if I can find a way to keep it, to continue to engage with it outside. If I keep it active in my heart, I may be able to look back and confirm that it was real, so the scientist in me might be satisfied, too.
And again, the flush of fear, knowing that there is no way for this all to resolve and internalize before our time is finished. I’m scared, not just by the impending pain, but by the possibility that, if we don’t manage it properly, I might be damaged by cutting things off in the middle of this transference, before its resolved, before I have taken ownership of my feelings. I have a creeping sense of danger that I don’t want to ignore. As much as I want to pretend it’s not happening, I can’t; it’s time for us to start negotiating the end.