Client AH.67.109 - Session 4


There’s an announcement for everyone at the end of this session.

(Beep. Music fades in)

I know that, in your line of work, having all the answers can be important. Or at least, you need to pretend that you do. That’s how you got to this point in your career, but it’s all just a game of pretend, isn’t it? Not just for you but for everyone. Everyone in your line of work must present themselves as the manifestations of infinite truth but stay just shy of outright divinity, least future research projects not get funded if the need gets shadowed by their game and their arrogance. But these claims aren’t true. They never are. Or seldom are, I guess we could say in the name of fairness.

Then again, your kind of sociology focuses a lot on the current moment, the present. How thing are not how they were were or will be.

So maybe that’s why it was easy to accept your husband’s so-called miraculous recovery all those years ago. The doctors couldn’t tell you how he recovered, but despite your love of knowledge, you didn’t really need to know how. Priorities and all that. You and the whole family had them. The main one was having him home. And you would, in time.

You didn’t have to react the way you did to his recovery, to a great deal of work that was going to be involved in it. (Music fades out and new music fades in) With his blessing, retroactively bestowed but still guaranteed to come, you could have focused more--or even exclusively--on the children. They needed you more. Everyone knew that but you knew there wasn’t a spare set of hands to help him in the hospital and that there were even certain times of the day when there was no one on staff available and willing to come help him should he need it. And he would need it. He needed you then. So you had to find some sense of balance.

And it seemed possible. After all, your career had a certain enviable flexibility to it. But that still wasn’t enough. You needed more. So you offered up the rest of yourself and your wellbeing. You poured everything you were... Not even everything you could spare.  But everything you were into this family. This makeshift, not even blended at that point, family.

And maybe the risk in there was obvious. You were running yourself ragged. But to be fair, it would have worked for a couple days. Maybe a week. But his recovery was slow, and it needed to be in order to happen properly. I only mean to say that time was not on your side. Because you kept giving. You pushed through your own pain and hurt as your body screamed for you to stop, to rest, you kept going. You were trying to be the superhero circumstances needed. And it wasn't an easy role to take on, but you had never lived your life according to what was easy.

And you found that this role fit you well. Since then you've come to wear it like a second skin. Or even a  first skin. After all, where would you be without it? You still don't know, so I guess that was not a fair question to ask.

(Music fades out and new music fades in)

The children saw it all. You tried to hide it from them. Noble of you. But children have eyes far sharper than what you would expect. And those eyes specifically were trained on you. Mostly to see you fail. After all, they wanted a reason to hate you. Well they had reasons; they were just unrelated reasons. And the children were craving something with more substance. Something they could tie directly to you to justify the anger they felt and carried with them..

They wanted you to give them that, but you didn't. Instead, you gave them light. They watched you empty yourself for them and their father. You didn't have to do that. They were old enough to know that and that you could have just left. Run up and abandoned them like their biological mother did. It was an option available to you. It was your choice. Perhaps a rational one.

But no, you chose to suffer, to wither away out of dehydration in the dessert because they needed you to do that. You ignored the cup of water in your hand because what good would that have done for them.

Quite honestly, it's hard to understand why that had the effect on them that it did. Maybe it's because they hadn't fallen fully into bitterness yet. They were hurt but only hurt. Hurt can heal. Bitterness needs to be escaped from. You need to pry yourself out of it's clutches. And that is so much harder to do, particularly when it grabs you at such a young age.

And personally, I think there was a bit of each of them that still dreamed of having a mother to rely on, even after all she put them through. It’s a natural desire, after all.

(Music fades out and new music fades in)

By the way, before I forget, congratulations on the grandchild. When she gets here. Yes, it will be before we next speak. Let me remind you that your pregnancies might have been hard, but her biological mother had an easier time with hers. And that's the genetic well your daughter is pulling from. It's the only gift she'll ever get from that woman. You always gave her so much more.

Personally, also, I think your name will suit her. It will be the eyes. They might not be similar, but they will match. Trust me.

(Music fades out and new music fades in)

As his recovery reached its second month, your life had taken on a surreal quality to it. That was the exhaustion coating everything around you. You were so tired; you were living in a haze. It's almost like what you feel now, right? In different ways,. You don’t remember much of that time, do you? But you remember, don't you, the rush that came from being their superhero. When your eldest daughter wrapped her arms around you, fearful tears in her eyes as her brother made you breakfast. Pancakes from pancake mix. He did that a lot before you. And that morning, he could see how rusty his skills had gotten. Because of you it wasn’t something he had done recently.

You held her just like you did him. Tightly. And in doing, so you pulled the pieces of her back together. Your friends had told you it was impossible. They told you some lives end tragically and far too soon, figuratively or otherwise, but by the power of your own hands. The force of your own power... You brought those children back.

You weren't use to feeling that powerful. No one is. But we all want to. And it makes a very good story to tell.

Therein lies the perils of human existence, I guess. We always feel the boundaries that limit us. We push against them, spurred on by the urge to do more, to expand, and to take up more space. To conquer, to create, and even to destroy. Conflicts and contradictions. Oh joy. We will always want so much more than we could ever have. And maybe we know we can’t have it, but we can never stop chasing it, can we?

I guess it’s okay to desire, to want. Better than to expect it, I guess. Better than to demand it of ourselves. To put our entire sense of self worth on the ability to do what can't be done and claim what can't be ours. To forget that we are human and demand that we make this a reality.

No, that wasn't a condemnation. These things happen because they are the product of so much more. A great portion of each of us are. Even if spite was the catalyst to that development.

Problem is, what happens to that extra spite? Where does it go? And what it give you?

(Music fades out. Beep. Music fades in)

And now for that announcement. The Oracle of Dusk has a website., and it includes information on how to support the show. Currently and going forward.

But the most important thing always will be to listen.

So are you listening?

(Music fades out. Beep.)