It is sinking in that my therapist has cancer and I may not see him again. When he told me I was in a crowded airport. He tried to get me to call back but I asked him what was going on. I was shocked and he said he was sorry I had to find out this way. I remember a few years ago I said half-jokingly "what will I do when you die?" and he said, "hopefully you will be better by then?". I tried to just be respectful and supportive. He said he would know in a month or two if he was working again, and if he did it would have to be tele health only. He said he had a list of long-term clients that he would touch base in a month. I mostly just want to know how he is doing. I told him that I would be thinking of him.
My husband understands how important he was and that I am still fragile. He encouraged me to meet with people and get to know someone, in case I need more support or get triggered while my therapist is battling cancer. He understands that it can sometimes be hard to find a good fit. I thought he was right. My therapist was supposed to email me a referral of someone to speak with if needed but he did not get to it. So today I called to make an appointment with a new therapist, and I almost started crying. I know that I can adjust to a new therapist, but this is a loss. I liked him a lot and he saw me through some tough times. His boundaries were always good, but he shared more information than many other therapists would. He was smart, progressive, warm and funny.
In other relationships, you could ask if you could help. or talk to other people who also care about this person. He has non-Hodgkins's lymphoma that has spread throughout his body. He said it was aggressive but treatable, he said he had a 60% chance of survival. I was calm but I thought to myself, those are not the best odds. So, he may or may not work again depending on how he responds to treatment. I know he has adult children that live in town. The only thing I can do is continue to take care of myself and accept the grief that comes from no longer having this person in my life. I can be grateful that I had such a good therapist for so long, on and off for over 20 years. I will miss seeing him.