It’s not uncommon for a therapist to be on the receiving end of gratitude expressed by their clients. I think this time of year can invite a reflective mood and, perhaps especially in the context of this year, we are many of us noticing just how far we’ve been challenged towards healthy change. Noticing our own journey can prompt many feelings – frustration, pain, sadness, compassion, hope, pride… and gratitude to those who have journeyed with us along the way.
I’ve been really moved by some of the expressions of thanks I’ve received over the last few days and weeks especially, yet feel consistently inadequate in my own response.
You see, I’m grateful to you.
Thank you for the utter privilege of hearing your stories.
Many Third Culture Kids I work with have not told their full stories before. There is shame, or fear in the telling and – oh – so much beauty. Your story is You. And how you tell it is such a precious glimpse into the You you are carrying through the world. The privilege of hearing this, and the joy of witnessing the power you take over your story as you re-hear it yourself, re-mold it, and re-birth it is a complete honour.
Thank you for the inspiration of your courage.
I hear so much pain, every day. And so much fear. And so, so much courage. The courage it takes to click onto a meeting with me, to show up, to invest in your own growth. It’s immense, and I don’t underestimate it. You are astonishing. And the fire in your belly to grow is a continuous inspiration to me. And I get to mirror that back to you, so you can see your own courage too.
Thank you for the trust in your tears.
Many Third Culture Kids discount their pain as not “enough” to warrant their tears. But as simple as it sounds, I maintain that sad things need tears. Tears are an honourable response to the presence of pain, and they bring congruence to our internal experience by externalising our agonies. Time and time again, you make water your work with your tears, and you trust me to honour them too. Thank you.
Thank you for the hope you kindle.
I’m so grateful for my clients. I had this mad hope in 2015, when I founded Life Story Therapies, that compassionate understanding of their own stories would propel Third Culture Kids into the lives they wanted. You caught that hope and kindled the embers. We nurse the fires together, in therapeutic alliance, mutual hope supporting your growth. Hope comes to life in our sessions and it’s the most beautiful thing.
In a terrible year, you have brightened my life, and inspired and propelled me forward.
I have the best job in the world.