In some patients who had turned away from their mother in dislike or hate, or used some other mechanism to get away from her, I have found that there existed in their minds nevertheless a beautiful picture of the mother, but one which was felt be a picture of her only, not her real self. The real object was felt to be unattractive – really an injured incurable, and therefore dreaded person. The beautiful picture had been dissociated from the real object but had never been given up and played a great part in the specific ways of their sublimations. ~ Melanie Klien, A Contribution to the Psychogenesis of Manic Depressive States,
We’d tempted fate.
We hadn’t meant to. Just feeling our oats, enjoying our lives, our home, our neighborhood, our careers, and our children. We were pleased with our bank accounts – our retirement looked reasonable enough for self-employed late bloomers, and the college funds were starting to accrue. The children were thriving, our marriage was in a good place. We had beloved friends, my mother had moved nearby to help with childcare and take on the tasks of an everyday grandmother.
We were healthy and fit – we were walking vigorously together in fact, in laps around the park before splitting off into our personal daily workout: I would practice bagua tai chi, and meditate, David would go run a few miles. It was spring, still wearing light sweat shirts, and the ground was damp and spongey.
We loved our work: both of us psychotherapists – we shared an office and had full and thriving practices. We were desirable. Effective. Non-traditional – maybe even a little renegade and rebellious. Our clients found our style direct, demystifying, refreshing….
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