“NO ONE WANTS TO READ YOUR THERAPY”
A comedian friend of mine told me that once. And I know what he meant by it. After all, anyone who’s ever accidentally stumbled into an open mic poetry reading while innocently trying to procure a cup of coffee knows that some people should really pay a professional to endure their shit instead of foisting lines like “”Hell is my home” and “I’m trapped in a castle with soundproof walls” on the general public.
But in some respects, I think he may have been wrong.
Because let’s be honest–is there any artistic pursuit, whether it’s writing, or painting, or music, that isn’t, basically, therapy? Bon Iver has a Grammy and Larry David is a millionaire for exactly this reason.
So while I fully acknowledge that the world needs another blog written by a young-ish white lady living in Brooklyn like the world needs, well… another blog written by a young-ish white lady living in Brooklyn, I do think maybe I have something else to write about that could, maybe, somehow be of use. And that’s grief–a subject with which I am acutely familiar.
You see, before I turned 30, I lost the three most important people in my life to cancer. My father to Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia (CLL), when he was 52 and I was 20; my best friend to melanoma when we were both 26; and my mother to lung cancer when she was 61 and I was 29.
It’s a strange world to live in when your entire support system just goes away. It’s especially strange when they’re all gone before you’ve even turned 30. To be surrounded by your peers, busy figuring out the basics of careers and dating, while you’re preoccupied with the ins and outs of chemo and radiation and hospice is a uniquely surreal experience. But it’s my experience, and one that every day I struggle to handle with modicum of grace, humor, and sanity.
Some days I do alright with it. Others I’m a fucking mess. But who isn’t?
So welcome to my therapy session.
And apologies should I happen to talk to my therapists about you.