So when we left off last, I was wondering whether I wanted to continue therapy. It turns out, I didn’t. I cancelled both appointments I had in July, and I never rescheduled them. If you’re curious why I quit therapy, read on!
As I was evaluating the pros and cons of therapy, I realized that therapy like all kinds of treatments, has side effects. Some of those side effects are minor, or at least would be if I was living in an alternate timeline where Covid wasn’t a concern and I didn’t have a disabling brain tumor.
As an introvert, I already spend a lot of time inside my head thinking and overthinking everything. Therapy intensified that for me, and at least for the time being, that’s not doing me much good. (Every session also means another medical bill to pay, so unless it’s something I see as necessary for my health and well-being, I’m not likely to keep forcing it on myself. Medicare actually pays less than Medicaid, but after two years of disability it’s pretty much your only option.)
I’m veering off course. Surprise!
Anyway, when I wasn’t in a therapy session, I was overthinking an upcoming session. I was ruminating about what to bring up and how to make that time productive, as I do for every medical appointment I have, and I was trying to knock back that same pre-appointment anxiety I always get a couple of days before seeing a doctor. It was weighing me down.
Not that there was no benefit for me at all. After my first session I initially felt unburdened and was bolstered by having someone on the outside say to me, “This is some heavy stuff. I’d be surprised if you weren’t dealing with these things right now.” But the returns diminished with each successive appointment.
That’s not therapy’s fault, though. I want to be really clear about that. I would consider going back again at some point in the future if my circumstances were different. And, of course, I would never discourage someone else from seeing if it helps them. There’s no way to know if it’s going to help than to give it a chance.
It just wasn’t good for me right now. I’m pretty sure I’ve said this here before, because I say it a lot: adding anything new to my routine means giving up something I was already doing. And cancer-related fatigue ensures that I never have enough energy to do all the things that need to be done. And I have to be careful about not cutting things from my day-to-day life that I enjoy because I see them as frivolous or whatever because going down that road is a fast-track to a major depressive episode where the little goblins in my head are like, “Why bother with anything?”
The price of therapy for me was being too exhausted and disinterested in things to Zentangle, and there’s a month-long gap in my YouTube uploads to drive home my point. Zentangling and my making videos for my channel are things that distract me from cancer, disability grief, the pandemic, and the general terribleness of a living through the age of Trumpism. So I’ve been doing my best to prioritize drawing simply because I like doing it.
If you missed any of my recent videos, I invite you to subscribe to my YouTube channel. Here’s my most recent Tangled Talk episode for those you who enjoy hearing me yap about stuff and things:
And here’s a more relaxing music-only video where I practice some basic Zentangle patterns. Enjoy!