Wednesday, February 28, 2007

An Honest Woman

Jean, my bereavement shrink told me I'm a very honest woman. She said it like she doesn't come accross one often and that is just weird considering every other session she throws her hands up in the air and announces, "I've treated thousands of people."

Just in case I might mistake this 70 something for a new kid on the block, she repeats, "Not hundreds, but thousands."

I get it. I get it. Each day she sits in her high back leather chair with her feet up on the ottoman, holding her huge mug of coffee (I'm assuming) and tells another poor widow or widower or worse how everyone experiences grief differently.

I object. I doubt there are "thousands" of variations on the death theme. I doubt it a lot. She seems to take great pleasure repeating my questions.

I ask her: "Why am I mad at him, lately?"

"Why do YOU think?" she responds. AHH...can I kill her and get away with it? I wonder.

"Why does it bother me so much that he never cleaned out the garage? Should that matter now? Damn. I'm a terrible person." I say, slumping further down on the couch.

Again with the "Why do YOU think?" But, something shifts and I sit up and tell her that if he had cleaned out the garage I wouldn't have to see the sides to Doug's old bunkbed, the gray lacquer cradenza from two houses ago and the stupid outdoor cushions that fit chairs that are long gone. I'm stuck seeing them through only my eyes and there's no one here to say,

"Oh, God, remember when Louis the decorator made us buy that?"

She has that 'It looks like we're getting somewhere look.' I furiously tell her that I'm not going to ask her why I'm focusing on the bad stuff. I already know. She bates me with a "Why?"

"Because there was so much of it!" I say, feeling PMSY even though I haven't gotten my period in five years. She puts down her coffee mug, takes her feet off the ottoman and leans towards me, "No", she says softly, "You're trying to not miss him so much."

Oh.