After 18 months of therapy, I have been set free. It wasn’t easy leaving, as I really enjoyed my conversations with Lynn, but when our sessions started to seem as if I was simply stirring the pot, talking about this and that, and not focusing on the issues I had with my little brother anymore, we both knew it was time for me to move on.
What got me to where I am now? Well, it all started with my brother Brian not wanting to have anything to do with me since our mother’s death, Nothing’s Unconditional. His accusations reflected his ignorance, as I truly loved our mother; I just had my own way of dealing with her illness and imminent death, which did not suit him in the least. Unfortunately, his accusations also reflected his hatred toward me, something he had apparently been harboring for a few years.
Part of my healing process following my mother’s death was to write. I had just begun a “40 Days of Writing” series — my first — so the timing was good. Although I wrote about other things than my family, it was the family stuff where I needed the most work, so I put my heart and soul into several pieces, mostly about my mother. Whatever you do, don’t press 7 came first, and over time, Comfort Food, My Stepdad is Dating Again, and Mom & Rainbows: A Story of Love, Life, Forgiveness & Gratitude all followed.
I thought about sending Brian these stories, but my own sense of pride wouldn’t allow me to grovel in that manner. But I still ached inside, and nothing seemed to be able to replace the pain of losing my closest family member.
I sought therapy and I knew from the start that this would be the best thing for me; Therapy. The once-a-week sessions involved plenty of tears, and not just over family issues; we talked about work, my marriage, whatever problem du jour was eating away at me that particular week.
Almost a year into my therapy Lynn suggested a mild dosage of antidepressant. Medication turned out to be a worthy supplement for my therapy, and I have remained on it since.
Thoughts of Brian still find their way into my head, but I no longer weep for the loss. If anything, I am sad for him, and yes, maybe a little angry; but the tears have dried and I focus on what I have control over, and what brings me joy. I focus on the people and my dogs that love me. I appreciate the good, embrace what I love about my life, and do my best to keep stress at bay.
Sometimes you have to do whatever it takes.