Day Six: Invisible
I had a hard time writing today. I spent two hours writing and then deleted the entire post. I knew if I was bored and confused by my ramblings and repetitive prose, you certainly would be. So instead, I offer out this excerpt from my prior writings. This scene explores the sense I had most of my life of not truly being seen. I imagine all people can relate to not being seen at some point or another in their lives.
“Sensing I needed help, I sought out a stranger, someone who could make sense of my world, someone who was not close to me, someone I did not have to risk losing. Before graduating high school, I would be deemed to have an inferiority complex, a diagnosis that led to little more than four weeks straight of listening to a dull realization tape made by the very same middle-aged therapist who’d so dubiously named my title. His was a tape where a deep methodical voice played out a fifteen-minute narrative of an imaginary creek scene.
Each night before bed, I was to place myself by the bubbling brook and healing sun and relax. That was my only task—to relax. I tried my best. I truly did; though I remained obliquely cynical throughout the process, thinking, in someway, I was at least getting something out of the one hundred and twenty-dollars Father had been forced by Mother to pay out in therapy fees.
For the red-bearded psychologist there were no readily available reasons for my inferiority. I was an intriguing case indeed—a pretty girl, somewhat charming, and well accomplished. Sitting there, in the stately office that gave off an awful stench of new carpet and furniture polish; I began to wonder why I had insisted on seeing someone in the first place. In all honesty, I knew what this man was thinking; as he sat there in his comfy leather high-back chair swiveling from side-to-side with one finger tapping his lip. He was seeing what they all had seen. The only difference being, he was receiving payment. This stranger behind the tidy walnut desk was no different than the rest. He was easy to fool. He hadn’t the slightest idea of where to begin looking or what to uncover, and I knew just the right words and phrases to lead him in the wrong direction. He would notice my nice clothes, my youthful face. He would note my kind mannerisms and make a list of all my accomplishments. He’d probably highlight a few catch phrases. And then he’d be done with me, done like the rest, having seen only what they had wanted to see, and not trying to see anymore.
He looked at me in the same quizzical doubting manner that my friend’s therapist had years ago. Though his doubtful expression was masked, I saw the essence of a smirk behind his steady pale eyes. And in the same way, I recognized by the way he nervously fidgeted with his ballpoint pen and wheeled his high chair, he hadn’t found the answers he’d been seeking.
Perhaps he was aware of my time limitations, of the lack of funds, and the urgency of my situation. Seeing how Mother worked just across the street from him and had more than likely had a lunch date once or twice with this man; he was bound to know some of the happenings, at least Mother’s view of it.
Quick and easy is how I saw the entire therapeutic experience. Roll her in, figure it out, and roll her back out—even if she’s still broken. Just make sure she can make it down the street on her own accord without breaking down.
With my new diagnosis in hand, granted after a brief multiple choice test and short interview, I now believed my emotional issues rested in my own inferiority complex and resulting inability to love myself. However, stepping out on my own, beyond the therapist’s office, one vital question remained: If I was somehow internally flawed by a faulty infrastructure, then how could I feasibly begin to rebuild myself? After careful contemplation and finding no solution to my troubles, I supposed, this therapeutic experience and the resulting diagnosis, was the world’s wicked way of placating and failing me all at once.”