In February 2013, a doctor friend who'd been providing a bit of guidance on my sober journey suggested I find a therapist.
I told him FUCK NO. I had tried many at this point and had run screaming from the encounters. He nodded in agreement, and then suggested I go to his personal therapist.
"She's weird and spiritual and I am pretty sure she can read my thoughts. So you'll love her."
I signed up.
I was still drinking and some nights I would make it to our appointments, and some nights I would text her that I had "an emergency at work" which meant I was going to sit at home and cry into wine and smoke spliffs. She cost $200 for the hour and didn't take insurance and so I literally paid $200 some nights to get high and NOT see her.
She was about five feet tall and had long curly crazy hair and a really thick accent and big intimidating eyes and her office smelled like patchouli and oranges. She always wore yoga pants and she sat across from me in her chair in lotus pose and our sessions would always start as a staring contest. Her eyes would widen and I would look away sure that she could read my thoughts, just like Matt said.
The third or fourth time I went to see her, I was dying of loneliness. I remember this ache in particular because it was debilitating. I had more friends than I knew what to do with and a staff of 20 and I worked with over one hundred people that I felt close to and I even had neighbors that checked in on me. And yet I felt I had this deeply sad, lonely existence. She sat across from me that night and after our staring contest asked me why I was so sad. I told her I felt desperate in my loneliness. She nodded.
She asked me to close my eyes and to feel the energy around me. I'd been meditating for some time, and so I did this, knowing what to do. Then she said "can you feel IT? Can you feel THAT?" I sat there, the tears pouring from my eyes.
I could feel IT. I could feel THAT.
A buzzing. A knowing. A THING that was beyond explanation. And it wasn't the first time I had felt IT or THAT or THING. I had felt it in those rare moments where I became totally absorbed in meditation. I had felt it once or twice at the end of a Kundalini session. I had felt it at times in churches or on my knees in prayer. It was always so fleeting, so unreal. I simply discarded it as soon as it left, writing it off to a repressed nervous system and a wild imagination.
I opened my eyes and asked her what the fuck it was. I remember thinking that perhaps I was the Second Coming and this is what Jesus felt like, and she was going to confirm all of this. I stared at her, sobbing and laughing, waiting for my answer.
"They're your angels, baby. You're surrounded. I've seen them since you started coming. They won't leave your side."
I thought about the hundreds of times I should I have died. Most recently on my birthday some weeks prior when I Liz Lemoned out and choked on the Shaking Beef from E&O alone in my apartment - drunk and stoned - and had to give myself the heimlich. I thought about the nights where I should have drunk myself to death or should have totaled my car. I thought about the day I asked for help and the things that had unfolded from that first moment on my knees, all the way up to the grace of Matt leading me to this woman.
"Now baby, they are very exhausted. You understand? But they have you. You are never alone. You understand? You are never alone. But they may need a break." She winked.
I don't remember her name. I don't remember what else we ever talked about. I don't remember when I stopped seeing her and started seeing Anne, my next therapist who saved my life. But I remember that she told me about my angels, and that in that moment I could feel the presence of my angels. And I have never forgotten them since.
The truth is that regardless of where you are or what you are doing to yourself or have done to yourself or how big you are struggling this minute - you landed here on this page and are reading these words for a reason. To reap the benefit of what my psychic Brazilian therapist shared with me.
You, my love, are surrounded. Do you understand? They have you. Do you see? Do you see that you are never alone? Do you see that every second of every day, at the depths and the heights and the lows and the shames, that you are being guided? That you are being held? Do you see that your angels are right there?
Sit right now for just a minute and feel for this. Close your eyes, take a breath, and just feel. For this unwavering support. For the miracle of what it is to never be alone - especially in the darkest moments. For the impermeable love and support that is yours any time you will have it. It is there, and it is real.
Side note, your angels may be tired, too. Wink.