I’ve got two weeks without therapy to get through. As I write this, I’m sat wrapped in a blanket that belongs to J. It’s my ‘transitional object’. I always borrow it when I’m not going to see her for a while, to help me feel like I’m still connected.
The blanket is very ordinary. It’s grey with some white stripes. It doesn’t look like it could be important, but it is. The main reason I love this blanket is its smell. I’ve always found smells evocative, good or bad. This blanket smells like J’s consulting room. It smells like the safety I feel there. It smells of being held and accepted and nurtured.
I am already disproportionately worried that the blanket’s smell will fade before I see J again. I’m not sure what the science is, but smells definitely wear off. Particularly the good ones. So I am rationing how much I allow myself to be wrapped in this blanket for fear that the comforting scent won’t last.
Aside from borrowing this magical blanket, J and I have agreed on a plan to help me feel a connection to her while she’s away. I’ll send her a few emails or text messages on allocated days to let her know what I’m up to and how I’m doing. She insisted I don’t have to be having a crisis to do this. She wants to hear the good stuff too.
I’ve also got my CoDA meetings. They are a great source of warmth and support. I’m planning to go to an extra meeting while I’m not seeing J. And perhaps I’ll make an effort to call my friends from CoDA on the days I won’t see them. I’m amazed at the kindness and compassion I receive from these relative strangers.
It’s important that I fill my time when I’ve not got therapy taking up my afternoons. I am a creature of habit; I need plans and a structure to my days. So I know I also need to reach out to friends and try and make some plans to see people.
The alternative is festering in this blanket until neither of us smell nice anymore…