Ther(happy) :)

Therapy is a word as common in my life as the days of the week now. It wasn’t always this way. 

I remember when I lost my sister. I was 10. It was a car accident on the last day of school. It was a shock and life changing for me, in my perfect world. 

My mother decided I should see a therapist; I wasn’t too thrilled. I was old enough to know that seeing a ‘therapist’ was baaaad…. Broken. Crazy town.

I remember her talking to me in that therapist way. I hated the questions. Then, sending me home to write in a journal. I thought it was completely stupid. I remember thinking, “we are paying money for THIS!???” Of course I begged to stop going, …and I got my way. I don’t think I even went twice. 

The sad thing is that I never gave it a chance. I went in hating it. I thought it was silly, and I could just as easy journal my feelings alone. But I didn’t. And I didn’t know how messed up my thinking was then either. I was deeply affected by the loss and change and I just swallowed down those feelings for years. I took the weight of the loss on my little 10 year old shoulders, hiding it from my parents and trying to take their hurt away as well. I suffered trying to wade through grown up feelings for many decades. And really, I just didn’t want to go because…I was embarrassed to be in therapy!

Most of my life I have been a fixer. A doer on my own. I even hate taking medicine and would rather suffer the pain. But kids change you. Things change. I’ve learned I can’t fix it all on my own. I learned I needed to be educated on a lot of new things to be a good mom. I needed to accept help to get there.

I’ve seen the art of therapy now. Many different kinds actually. Speech, occupational, physical, behavioral, pshycological…just to name a few. There are many! I spend a lot of time learning about parts of our body I didn’t know existed! It’s actually kind of amazing, and I’ve found a real love and respect for the complexity of our bodies and brains. 

And what I’ve learned about therapy, is that the books are so complicated, but the methods always seem embarrassingly simple. Like, really? This is it? But there is more than meets the eye. It’s not the simple repetitive movement. Or the simple repetitive words themselves. It’s the method. An adjustment in thinking. A rebalancing of something out of alignment. A new perspective. It looks like a simple exercise, but the results are that of a trained professional. You have to have a little faith and go with it. And it can actually be enjoyable! Like seriously better than a doctor or dental visit.

So, I appreciate therapy now. It’s a privlege. It’s costly and sometimes I can’t afford it. So when I do, it’s something I pay attention too, and learn as much as I can. Maybe it IS something we can do on our own sometimes. But not always. And it’s difficult to know where to start. Sometimes, you need that push in the right direction. So I go in with an open mind and really listen. Then I go home and do the work! And I’m not embarrassed about it. Not at all.

So…therapy. Not a baaaad word! Ther(happy). 🙂 It’s ok.

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Suzy Higley

Suzy Higley

Wife to my childhood sweetheart. Stay-at-home mom of 3 awesome boys, ages 14, 12, and 5. My youngest is non-verbal and has Autism. Currently starting a community with other Autism Moms called Better Together. More social learning opportunities for our kids on the spectrum are needed...and because I couldn't find them, I'm creating them. I also draw and paint on both paper and walls...and furniture. And speaking of furniture, I have a chronic furniture rearranging condition that I'm seeking help for. Not really...it's my favorite.

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