Bridges to cross ~
Katy was feeling insecure about a major lecture she had to give. Her role as Instructor of Self Develpment at the college had always been a joy for her. Katy was also a practing psychologist in private business. Her lecture titled ‘Bridges – Crossing A Bridge In Times Of Personal Crisis’ had been anxiously looked forward to by her students, many who were going through a personal crisis. Now, she was going through her own unexpected personal crisis.
Katy’s lecture was well planned, with a video, inspirational photos, and quotes from famous authors and psychologists to show on the large screen. She had the lecture memorized, had worked on it for several weeks and she had felt good about it, knowing it would help many. At the time she began planning the lecture all was well in her life, she was happy and very much in love with Brent, her husband. Next week
would have been their tenth anniversary. If he had died, she could have taken time off and let another instructor take over to give this lecture. But, Brent had not died. He had just left her two days ago. The only thing he left behind in their home was a short note: “Katy, I am sorry, but I have found someone else and need to end our marriage. I have no reasonable explantion why I fell out of love with you and why I need to find a new life. It is just something I need to do.”
Just something he needs to do. What the hell does that mean? That thought kept running round and round in her head. Brent had always left notes for her and she looked forward to reading them. He was not a talker and felt uncomfortable expressing emotions. Since they were in high school, when they first fell in love, he wrote notes to her often. It was hard for him to say things, even to say “I love you”. Katy got used to it and thought he would change over time, become more confident in himself. After ten years he was still not able to express feelings. Several times over the years she tried to help him. His response was always, “I am not one of your looney patients!” Eventually she gave up, just knowing all would be well and he really loved her. I am a damn psychologist! Why could I not see this coming? She berated herself.
Now she had her own bridges to cross. The morning of the lecture she got up early and fixed her favorite omelet and strong coffee. As she lingered over sipping coffee her mind was spinning like a black tornado. Words from her father, a great psychologist himself, suddenly came to her. “Sometimes, Katy, you have to put aside your own feelings, stand up bravely and do what you have to do. Then later you can crash!” He was such a kind soul, always giving her the moral support she needed. Katy reached for the phone and dialed his number. When he answered she said, “Daddy, I am going to have a very difficult day. I will need to see you tonight and crash!” Any time she called him “Daddy” Carl knew she was deeply troubled. “I will be with you all day in spirit, my dear. Whatever it is we will get through it together. Have faith in yourself.”
With courage and no time for tears, Katy took a hot shower, dressed in her most chic suit, grabbed her briefcase and drove to the college. When she entered her classroom she did so with confidence and courage. As the students started pouring in she was surprised to see so many, some who had not attended all classes. She was also surprised to see Joseph, another psychologist in her department. He sat in back and took out his notebook. Somehow, seeing her dear friend back there gave her even more courage and support.
Her lecture went very well. Only one time she almost lost control. When she came to the question: “What if your spouse of several years suddenly up and left you? How could you get through that? Let’s talk about it.” She managed to get out, “What if … “, and tears filled her eyes. She reached for a tissue and dabbed at her eyes. “Sorry, darn allergies,” she said then continued on flawlessly. When the lecture was over several students came down and thanked her, some made an appointment with her for counseling. The last one to come down was Joseph.
“In all the years I have known you Katy, you never had allergies. He left you, didn’t he?” All she could do was nod her head. “I will help you cross that bridge, Katy. I will be here for you.” They left together and stopped for lunch. Katy felt remakably refreshed and brave,
knowing she had a good friend and her father to help her cross those bridges. She suddenly had more faith in herself than ever before.
© 2016 Phyllis Doyle Burns
Inspirational Fiction – Faith in Self, Friends, Moral Support