I was sound asleep when the phone rang. It was still very dark as I reached for my smartphone. By the second ring I quickly Swiped the screen and its sudden illumination made my eyes wince but through my squint I could read the time 2:22 a.m. and the name of the caller, Jennie (not her real name). I felt no inconvenience, no negativity, not even frustration. In a micro-instant I swiped the phone again to answer the call and with ease I brought all of my attention, all of my energy, all of the love that I could feel fully into that present moment, for I knew that the person on the other end of that connection was reaching out to me because they had no one else...I was between them and a place they didn't have the internal resources to get to on their own...I knew it and they knew it too.
"Hi Jennie...listen carefully to what I'm about to say to you, I want you to take one big deep breath and exhale slowly. "
I was speaking and climbing out of bed while at the same time I grabbed my robe simultaneously with my free hand and threw it around my shoulders, in order to move into another room. My wife stirred for a brief moment...as I left the room gently closing the door behind me and as it clicked gently closed I could hear Jennie's ragged inhale followed by a tearful and sobbing exhale as I moved out into the middle of the parlor. Honestly concerned I asked Jennie one question
"Tell me what's up kiddo?." With those words a flood of fear, pain, guilt and shame poured out through a descriptive snapshot of the previous evening. Jennie had been wrestling with drugs and alcohol since she was eleven. Her parents introduced her to them when she was just a child, it became her way of gaining love and acceptance in an unloving environment.
As she matured through her teen years, she became quite attractive and discovered that her need for appreciation and love...or the at least the illusion of feeling love, could be gained through her sexuality...but the love she really craved could not be found outside of herself and this led her to a number of attempts at suicide, which stopped when through a few sessions she began to reevaluate how she was grossly underestimating her own value as a person. Through a few sessions and her commitment to change a new sense of her own value was being developed and her suicide attempts ended. But drugs and sex were still easy yet artificial ways to gain a sense of being valued by others.
Tonight Jennie had come to the realization that she would have leave her old friends, and strategies of drugs and sex behind in order to discover her authentic self and bring new meaningful relationships into her life. She spoke half sobbing;
"I'm just so afraid I'm going to be alone for the rest of my life." Through the anxiety communicated in her voice I knew her body was tense and needed to be more relaxed for a change of state to start becoming her new reality.
"Take another slow deep breathe Jennie.' I waited until her exhale completed before I asked;
'Haven't you felt alone most of your life already? Doing things you hated doing?"
"Yes I have." I could could hear she was a little more relaxed.
"Take another deeper, slower breath right now."
As she exhaled this time she sighed with a sound of real relief and with that sound I could feel that she would be able to hear and take in what I was about to say and what that would cause her to realize.
"If I told you right now that you would only have to wait two more weeks and that at that time you will begin meeting people that will really appreciate you for who you are, what do you think would happen to your fear about being alone right now?"
"It would go away...it wouldn't be a part of my life anymore..." she sounded a little surprised
"That's right...and what would start becoming a part of your life as your fear of being alone leaves?" there was a long pause, and then she responded with a sense of realization and meaning in her voice;
"Love...I would start to Love!" She actually began to laugh...and repeated the words as if they were now becoming her truth;
"I will have real Love in my life!"
"Yes....remember that it was your your desire to overcome your fear of being alone that made you pick up that phone. "
"In a strange way sometimes our fears and our negative states can move us to find the very resources we need in order to take needed steps back towards love, peace, joy and passion." I could feel Jennie smiling.
Copyright © December 8th 2016 by William Michael Forbes. All rights reserved.