Bob says the perfect thing when I get mired in the Gall Bladder Blues. He asks:
Those words offer support without inflaming me further.
The Gall Bladder Blues make the world a dark and dreary place. I remember the sun, but don’t see it. I try not to spread my gloom around, but it’s tangible. Bob feels it the minute he walks in the room. Like Perseus relating to Medusa, Bob knows not to look me in the eye lest he be turned to stone.
But also like Perseus, he does look through a mirror. Perseus used his shield to see Medula’s reflection. Bob’s mirror is in his own heart. That shields him.
Normally I don’t explain my perceptions when I’m at a low. Recently I did. I told Bob, “You’re sitting across the table from a woman for whom everything seems wrong right now.” He said he’d lay low. I continued, “It’s important to understand that there’s no way you can make me happy right now, but you’re obligated to try.”
Instead of speaking from my toxic mindset, I spoke about it. It’s a fine line. I know I’m toxic, and I don’t want to infect anyone. I also don’t want to be completely isolated, either.
I sipped a new herbal tea. The tea I had switched to in the more recent stage of my recovery triggered my Gall Bladder Blues. I hoped this would ease my malaise.
By the end of the conversation, my cup was empty and my Gall Bladder Blues were gone. I saw the sun again. I still had some physical symptoms, but peace was restored inside of me.
Happily, peace was never lost between Bob and myself.
Bob gets most of the credit for that. He stayed present without drinking the poison himself. He looked at me through the best possible of mirrors and waited. We had a lovely evening together.