Friday, January 12, 2007

Counselling I

I saw my counsellor. It was very good. I instinctively liked and trusted her and I was surprised by how much we covered in a first session.

Aftewards, though, I felt like an outer layer of skin had been pealed off. I suddenly felt very exposed and vulnerable with only that new, pink underlying layer between me and the world. Such a thin barrier didn't feel like enough to protect me.

As soon as I walked out of that session, I thought, This is why people avoid counselling.

And for some reason, an image of crab meat and a shady rock kept coming into my mind. I didn't know why. I know nothing about crabs. I don't even eat them.

But now that I have looked them up, I begin to suspect why. Apparently, crabs grow by shedding their outgrown hard shell. All they have for a little while afterwards is a soft shell and this leaves them very open to a world full of predators. So they hide under a rock or bury themselves in the sand until their new, larger hard shell grows.

I have to discard that outer shell or I won't grow. It feels safe, it feels predictable, but I can't grow unless I shed it and endure this vulnerability. My protection would become my cramped little prison.

But I do need to go scuttle under a rock for a few days.


Blogger Rob said...

Em, obviously the first time that you "bare your soul" to a stranger like that, you will not come away from the experience very comfortable because it can be quite humbling. I daresay though that I look forward to your report on how you will feel after future visits - counseling II, counseling III, ... Any kind of change is hard, sometimes painfully so, and you are to be congratulated and encouraged to keep up the good work. It takes guts in what you are doing but I think you have to acknowledge that it can't help but tremendously help your relationship with your guy. So good on you, lady!

3:39 PM  
Blogger C-Marie said...

Care if I join you under that rock??

6:58 PM  
Blogger 2amsomewhere said...

If you feel totally comfortable with a therapist, the therapist isn't doing his or her job properly. ;-)

9:55 PM  
Blogger Fiona said...

Oh Emily I know the feeling.

Rob's right. It does take courage and that's something I've always seen you to have in huge amounts!

Big hugs

4:20 PM  
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