I went to a counselor yesterday. It wasn’t my first time. I was probably about 11 when my parents (let’s be real here, it was probably my aunt Sheila) realized that I needed some assistance with life. What they failed to see was that they had a true Will Hunting on their hands. I was so adept at playing these head doctors that each session would end with said doc “highly” suggesting to my parent that an appointment in their name would be most fortuitous. I played the slightly wounded, yet plucky, tween so well that even I believed it. I was precocious yet normal and needed no real help that they could see. I never saw the same shrink twice. I did, however, see multiple. What that means, I will leave up to you.
As I find myself with a shredded heart for the first time in 6 years, I also have found myself with ancient demons whispering in my ears. He opened up the gates of hell and not only does it smell like sulfur but it hurts like going to the dentist in the 1920’s. So this time, I have decided to drop the act and get honest with a person who gets paid to listen to me. I want to know why I am so sure that everybody I love will abandon me the second they see the ugliness inside. I have questions. And I want to learn how to take the pains of life and use them as stones for stepping, not for building higher walls around my heart.
The in take doctor is the one who types whilst you talk and decides which lucky psychiatrist gets to look into your head. Even though nothing was really done, it felt fantastic to talk about my life. I cried a little bit. I kept catching myself trying to play the well adjusted go getter. But then I remembered. I brought myself there. I called. I made the appointment. And I need to be real with this guy. If I don’t, I will keep loving men that build dreams around me and smash them with ease, I will keep running from my fear of failure, I will keep hiding from the devils that chase me night and day. Devils that are gaining speed.
The more open I get, the more my stomach aches with sadness over losing my love, the more angry I get at the things in me that pushed him, the things in my parents that taught me to pick at wounds instead of letting them heal. But fuck it! Let’s put the money in the plate and let the healing begin!
A little Good Will Hunting monologue for you.
“So if I asked you about art, you’d probably give me the skinny on every art book ever written. Michelangelo, you know a lot about him. Life’s work, political aspirations, him and the Pope, sexual orientation, the whole works, right? But I’ll bet you can’t tell me what it smells like in the Sistine Chapel. You’ve never actually stood there and looked up at that beautiful ceiling. Seen that. If I ask you about women, you’d probably give me a syllabus about your personal favorites. You may have even been laid a few times. But you can’t tell me what it feels like to wake up next to a woman and feel truly happy. You’re a tough kid. And I’d ask you about war, you’d probably throw Shakespeare at me, right: “Once more into the breach, dear friends.” But you’ve never been near one. You’ve never held your best friend’s head in your lap, and watch him gasp his last breath looking to you for help. I’d ask you about love, you’d probably quote me a sonnet. But you’ve never looked at a woman and been totally vulnerable. Known someone that could level you with her eyes, feeling like God put an angel on Earth just for you. Who could rescue you from the depths of Hell. And you wouldn’t know what it’s like to be her angel, to have that love for her, be there forever, through anything, through cancer. And you wouldn’t know about sleeping sittin’ up in the hospital room for two months, holding her hand, because the doctors could see in your eyes that the terms “visiting hours” don’t apply to you. You don’t know about real loss, ’cause that only occurs when you’ve loved something more than you love yourself. And I doubt you’ve ever dared to love anybody that much.
I look at you. I don’t see an intelligent, confident man. I see a cocky, scared shitless kid. But you’re a genius, Will. No one denies that. No one could possibly understand the depths of you. But you presume to know everything about me because you saw a painting of mine. You ripped my fuckin’ life apart. You’re an orphan, right? [nodding] Do you think I’d know the first thing about how hard your life has been, how you feel, who you are, ’cause I read Oliver Twist? Does that encapsulate you? Personally, I don’t give a shit about all that, because you know what, I can’t learn anything from you I can’t read in some fuckin’ book. Unless you want to talk about you, who you are. Then I’m fascinated. I’m in. But you don’t wanna do that, do you, sport? You’re terrified of what you might say. Your move, chief.”