Yesterday I didn’t do any writing on my practice novel. I took the day off to spend time with my daughter and her family. We travelled with others to watch a Thanksgiving weekend football game. The bus ride there and back gave her and I a chance to get caught up as her world has been filled to the brim with her sons, husband and her work. Funny how life seems to bring long spaces of separation from those we love. It was a good day, our team won in spite of playing a lousy game, and I got to share the day with two grandsons and my first child.
This morning I got back to writing and want to bring the results here as another peek into the story. After all, Will comments that he wants to read more. Perhaps when the story is done there will be enough interest for me to to through the process of publishing the book. But that is for another day. Now, to the story.
~ ~ ~
“What’s the matter, Hugh?” asked Enid as we walked down the old paved road passed the golf course still buried beneath snow. It was Sunday afternoon and I had said that I needed to get out for a walk. The wind had picked up a bit and the cold had deepened. Winter on the Canadian prairies often made the daily walk an exercise in will power and well as exercise for the body.
“I don’t really know what’s the matter, Babe. I thought that it would start getting better already. But I just seem to be getting more and more confused and depressed, if that’s possible.”
Enid had noticed my depression but hadn’t said anything on Thursday evening when I arrived. I could see it in her eyes and in the hug that seemed to go on forever. Enid knew that I would tell her when I could find the words. However, with the week-end almost over and facing another two weeks without me, she couldn’t wait anymore. It was too hard living on the sidelines watching the only man she have ever loved, descend into depression.
“Hugh, you know that things always seem to get worse. You’ve always told your clients that when they began to confront their demons in counselling,” Enid offered. “I think you forget, already, just how bad it was before you left for analysis in the city. The kids saw it, I saw it. Now what we see is a ray of hope that you going to come back to us, healed. We see it and feel it, Hugh. Now you just have to let it happen. Stop fighting it.”
Without realising it, Enid had hit the nail on the head. I was fighting it, I was getting in the way.
“That’s what I love about you, Babe. You know me better than I know myself and aren’t afraid to tell me what you see, what you know, what your intuition tells you.” I confessed. “I am resisting and don’t know why. I do all that Wiatt is asking; well, almost all.”
“What do you mean? ‘Almost all?” Enid asked.
“Wiatt is beginning to ask about my mother. It feels as if he hoping that there is something hidden there that might be relevant to the work I need to do.”
“Maybe he is right.”
“Enid, you know my mother.” I protested thinking that what enough. I wasn’t ready for her response.
“No, Hugh, I don’t know your mother. I know you love her, but I don’t really know her. There is an invisible shield around her that doesn’t let me in. She’s just there in the background. Do you really know her, Hugh?”
“Of course I know her,” I replied defensively. “She’s my mother for Christ sake.”
“I wonder?” Enid softly offered as a question, “But, you’re probably right.”
And with that, the conversation stopped and we continued our walk in silence. And in that silence, squirming with guilt for having brushed off Enid’s honest attempt to help, I remembered the words from a book I had read following Wednesday’s session with Wiatt in which the topic of my mother came up, a book called the Inner Child in Dreams, by Kathrin Asper:
Another aspect of the negative mother complex brings the experience of having no solid ground in oneself . . . cannot develop trust in himself and the world . . . leads to untimely maturity . . . the impression of being understanding, reasonable, willing to adapt and ready to help . . . guilt feelings . . . an endangered child . . .
“Maybe you’re right, Enid.” I said in the silence. “Maybe you’re right. Maybe I don’t know my mother as much as I think I do.”