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In Hot Pursuit of Happiness

“High Time”

shutterstock_138711254Luvvies! It has happened! I have joined the (whatever-the-statistic-is)% of the world who are getting counselling, to sooth, smooth, and make manageable the Pain of Life.

It’s been a Process, getting onto the psychologist’s couch (or firm chair, in my case, with mandatory tissue box before me). I never found it ‘normal’ to pay someone… to talk to them. I should have got into the scam-sounding business myself, except I’d probably say things like: “Get a GRIP, dudette. He doesn’t want you? He doesn’t want you. He’ll NEVER want you. Never, ever, ever. Men are like that, don’t you know, what? Here, have a drink. Now. Let’s talk about what to do with your hair. And your teeth –oh, and have you thought of Internet dating? It’s not just for losers any more, as the media has changed the general perception to a great extent… Another drink? Sure.”

marriageSpeaking of relationships… I can swear to you on the Bible that my… (I want to say the acknowledged term is “entering treatment?”)… Yeah. My “entering treatment” could not have been a decision made at a better time. In the past month, I have suffered through organising a suicide-making international workshop (if you don’t know what that entails, please make sure you never find out); I’ve had the worst alcohol binging session ever in memory. And though my efforts to Get Back Into My Jeans have paid (unbelievably) off… I began this week with (one of my) bosses making a statement to the effect that it was “High Time” (and again) “HIGH TIME” that I got married.

mommy-im-andhavent-had-coffee-yet-baby-morning-awake-groggy-demotivational-posters-1370239844To cap it all, out of the blue, Mum came out this morning with: “So where’s your boyfriend?” I was just taking the second sip of my first coffee of the morning, so you can imagine my mentally pinching myself, wondering whether I had actually woken up, or whether it was just one of those dreams where you’ve woken up. When the heat signals from my lower lip, still resting on the hot mug, reached my brain, I determined I was actually awake, but still couldn’t understand what I’d heard, and so came out with a primitive grunting sound, at which Mum brightly nodded, and REPEATED: “Where’s your boyfriend?” I finally looked at her, wondering whether she was as awake as she thought, but there she was, as usually, flitting like the proverbial Energy Bunny from the stove to the kettle, half-way into the fridge, and back again. I managed to organise my thoughts and tongue enough to respond that I didn’t want one.

4933Turning from what I thought was half-way up the cupboard, Mum smiled and shook her head: “But you must have one, Ciggie.” The statement was so confident, so final, for a second I actually thought there was something wrong with me. But only for a second. “WHY?” I returned aggressively, tipping half the contents of my mug down my throat, and the other down my front. Mum now seemed to be perched atop the pantry door: “Because you must,” she answered simply. Giving up the whole thing (I never have any discussions/arguments/debates or other significant exchanges in the morning. As I’m a night owl my brain’s absolutely pointless at that time, and has led, in the past, to seriously compromising behaviour, including my promising things I never intended, arguing heatedly for Fascism, and an hour-long decision to enter a convent.) As I was saying, I was giving up the whole thing, when it came to me to say, in a manner that was a perfect throwback my 16th year: “Well he’s on the Internet somewhere, so whatever.” Mum was now outside in the small court where we have our washing machine, and loading it with gusto. Poking her head up for 3/4s of a second, she said: “Well find him! It’s High Time.”

Young Woman ThinkingAnd that’s the mood I’ve come to work in.

Now, let me talk to you a little about my (doctor? Counsellor? No. I’ve got it!) THERAPIST. What I like most about him? He has NO idea what to make of me. What I like next about him? That doesn’t seem to fluster him one bit. He gives me homework… and whether I want to or not, I actually THINK about doing it. Which means I do it. Which has so far led to Excellent sleep and a hardening decision to join the gym up the road. It has also led to my use of a car, which has been terrifying. Though I’m an excellent driver, it’s been a lo-hong time since I was responsible for one, having spent years spoiling myself and avoiding any responsibilities I didn’t absolutely HAVE to shoulder… In short, after just two (yes, 2) sessions, my Life’s already changing. It hasn’t been painful so far, and I’m suddenly feeling more positive than I have for a REALLY long time. No, no, no… trust me. I don’t expect to be feeling like this forever, or even for the rest of the month. But I do believe I might develop enough strength to weather it when things do turn, without turning to “Destructive Behaviour” (read avoiding human company, and binge-drinking while indulging in negative feelings.) Being Me, I question and debate almost everything he says to me, but this little man is GOOD at Tennis. And what he comes up with makes sense –even to me. I don’t know how he does it, I really don’t. But I think I’ll keep him. Especially as he seems to be the only one not urging me to throw myself into the arms of the very next Loser I lay my eyes on (bless his little toes.)

psychotherapy_imgI end with a formal apology for such a long Silence –I’ve been… that’s it: “Working Through Some Issues.” I’m going back to posting at least once a week, and promise to appall you a hilariously as possible. I hope you are All well (can you believe it’s half-way through 2014 already?!) and that the year has so far shown itself as Promising. If not –you know where to write to me: ciggie.cramond@gmail.com. And if you have appalling episodes of your own lives to share –Please DO! Post a comment!

Bless, C.

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About Ciggie Cramond

Ciggie Cramond is an author, writer, editor and translator currently living in Nairobi, where she is actively writing her next book, supporting Arsenal, and looking for The One... Online, naturally!

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