Few minutes to spare before I’m off. To Sweden.
I’m flying over for a few days to celebrate my sisters’ mum’s 60th birthday. I wasn’t going to go initially, seeing as I was over there in March. (My youngest sister and I travelled there as a surprise for the middle one). So, I had decided not to go. But a special, and very sweet, request came through from the birthday girl, and I decided on the spot that I was going to join them for this special day.
I am really really looking forward to seeing them all. Even though I saw my sisters in March I haven’t seen their mum or brother since Christmas, and I know it’ll be good for me to be around people who have a knack for making me feel better about myself.
Still, I do have somewhat mixed feelings about this trip. My mother called the other day. Our second conversation since April of last year, and I ended up telling her I’m flying over for G.’s birthday celebrations. I didn’t say it in order to hurt her, but because it seemed wrong to somehow conceal my going there. I know my mother finds it difficult to deal with my relationship to G., that it brings out all sorts of feelings in her, but it just seemed a really bad thing to do to not tell her. Especially since I had already told my dad, and even though they are long since separated, chances are that she hears it from him. And I didn’t want that. Letting her hear it through someone else would have been both cowardly and cruel.
Unfortunately, the side effect of having told her is that I now feel really bad about going. I mean, I’m still looking forward to seeing everyone, but the sheer joy I was feeling has, undoubtedly, been tainted by something else. Something not so pleasant. I could hear it in my mother’s voice when I told her; how hurt she was by it. How she feels like I’m favouring G. over her. That’s not actually the case, we just have a very different relationship, but I know that’s what my mother will be thinking.
Fast forward to my therapy sessions: I can see a very clear echo of this same thing happening there. As you know I had to stop seeing D., my previous counsellor, back in December last year, and I’ve only very recently been able to find a person who seems to suit me in a similar (but different) way. Only I’m really struggling to allow myself to engage properly. As much as I want to I can’t help but to feel that in talking to A., in allowing her to take over that really important part of my life, I am somehow being unfaithful to D. This is, of course, not the case, nor an idea D. would want me to entertain. I know that. But I can’t help it. Big time transference. I can see that. But, it doesn’t make it any easier to deal with.
I think what I really need from D. (and consequently also from my mother, although I’m not sure I’ll be able to get either) is to hear, and to really feel, that it’s ok for me to move on. That she isn’t at all jealous of A. taking over, that, in fact, she is happy to hear of the progress I’m making. I think it’s necessary for me to be able to really take things further with A. Because as long as I keep hearing this voice, false as it is, telling me that I am being disloyal, I just can’t.
A. (or G., for that matter) telling me that it’s ok, that I have every right to move on, to do what I need to feel ok about myself, – well, it just doesn’t cut it. I’m way too pre-conditioned to tune in to that little voice at the back of my head telling me the opposite. It doesn’t matter that I can see exactly where that voice comes from, or how little sense it makes to listen to it, I just can’t drown it out.
So, there you go. Textbook example of transference in action.
Anyway, must rush. That plane won’t wait for me!