So I show up at my first appointment rather nervous, not knowing what to expect. I’m sitting in the waiting room until she calls me in. We go back to her office and sit down. The office is nice, comfortable, and there’s a device playing some background noise, like oceans and wind, presumably to calm the patient and provide some privacy by blocking voices in and out of the office. Ms Twig seemed nice, pretty in a professional way, probably a few years my junior. I began by telling her that I’m not much of a talker and I particularity don’t talk about myself. She didn’t press and we talked about what brought me to the clinic and generally what’s been going on with me lately.
That session ended and I felt it wasn’t that bad, the therapist seemed genuinely interested in helping and no Freudian talk ever came up. Still didn’t quite know what to think though, but consented to a second session.
Over the next few sessions Ms Twig begun to win me over, she gave me some questions and a test and came up with a diagnosis of PTSD over some stuff that happened early in my childhood and later in life additional trauma from my work. Like many I had thought that PTSD was something that soldiers got from battle. She explained that it can happen to anyone that has had trauma. Upon doing my own research I discovered just how dead-on her diagnosis was, the PTSD not only explained my depression and anxiety, but all of the social and health issues I have/had had over the years! (IE; I was developing digestive issues as early as in my childhood.)
It wasn’t long before I was on regular scheduled weekly visits. Ms Twig had me doing some homework out of a Cognitive Behavioral Workbook. I see now the reasons were multifaceted, I was learning the cognitive skills the book offered, but it provided topics of discussion and proved helpful in drawing me out as it only made sense to discuss what I had written down.
Now I’ll condense the following year as it’s mainly the relationship itself and the bad ending of it that’s relative to this story. I saw Ms Twig weekly for 14 consecutive months, I never missed or was late to an appointment. Ms Twig missed a few for personal reasons and I do not begrudge her those absences. Some months into my treatment Ms Twig left the clinic to start her own practice. She had graciously, (I thought at the time), asked if I would like to see her at her practice. I told her of course, that my loyalty was to her as I was her patient, that the clinic was just the middleman and I didn’t want to start all over with a new therapist anyway. So we continued at her practice without interruption in my treatment.
A few things worthy of note in the following months, I had my disability hearing which greatly distressed me as it felt like I had surrendered my dignity. The weight of this hearing is increasing to this day and cause of a great deal of depression and anxiety, and worry all in of itself.
Ms Twig suggested during a session that I may be an empath. Not knowing much about the subject I researched it and sure enough, just like the PTSD diagnosis everything clicked, the definition fits me to a T and from what I’ve read it’s not uncommon for an empath to have PTSD.
We finished the CBT workbook and began work out of a PTSD workbook.