The Counselor (A Tale of Success)

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Other  |  House: Booksie Classic

Submitted: August 21, 2016

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Submitted: August 21, 2016

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The door to her office opens at 10:00 AM.

 

She is a counsellor, always aiming to help those in need.

They often ask her why it is that she chose to study psychology, why she decided to become a social worker. Couldn't she have at least gotten her PHD and made some real contribution to the field of psychology, rather than giving up at the age of twenty-six and settling for the average? Why be happy with the average when you can be the best, when you are a smart girl and possess the ability to achieve the highest plateaus of success? What kind of a degree is psychology anyways? Some say it's not even real science! She provides no response to those who ask such questions - only a smile that seems to reassure them that she is at peace with herself.

 

Among her clients she is mostly well-liked. For the most part she can at least get them to open up a little bit about themselves, even if after a couple sessions they decide to stop showing up. Losing grasp on a client is a fact she has gotten used to; life has taught her that people will come to her if they need help. For those who seek a shoulder to cry on, she will be there like a rock, a testament that even in the darkest of times, humanity still prevails.

 

What of her personal life, then? What does she do in her free time? Her friends at the bar she often goes to tell her that she needs to get out more often, go flirt with strangers, let them spoil her. What about traveling? Surely there are places she still hasn't visited, countries she has yet to grace with her presence. She responds by saying that she isn't much of a traveler. Her friends let out a gasp, abhorred by the fact that a young woman presented with all the opportunities life has to offer should settle so quickly, without seizing every one of said opportunities by the throat. They remain silent. She smiles and mixes her drink.

 

At night when she gets back to her apartment, she unwinds by watching TV or reading a book. Some nights she even allows herself the luxury of drinking some wine. Before bed she sends a few messages to this guy she's seeing, asking him how his day was, him replying with curt responses that put a smile on her face regardless of their rude nature. She is happy to have someone to talk to before bed, the presence of whom she imagines by her side before she drifts off into sleep.

 

When she goes out for dinner with her friends she always chooses the same burger joint, which leads to a collective groan by the rest of the group. Why must she be so plain? Why does she only eat boring food? Why limit herself and her choices? In response she tells them that it is not about being close-minded, but that she simply likes eating burgers.

 

Another interesting fact is that on sunny days she refuses to leave her house. She stays inside and watches Netflix, drinks her black coffee, and reads her books. Her friends are out there by the pool, tanning and having the time of their lives, squeezing every ounce of pleasure out of their lives. They talk about her often, in third-person, concocting tales as to why she is a shut-in, that she must be depressed if she likes to go out only on rainy days, that she needs to get some more sun. She doesn't want to be this pale forever, does she?

 

She does in fact remain pale skinned. She continues to drink hot coffee in 35 degree weather, to go outside when it's raining and stay away from sunlight, to settle for her current job that her friends seem to think is way beneath her true potential, to continue spending hours with herself staring at nothing while her friends move about incessantly as if chasing something that isn't there. In her own view she is at peace, satisfied, comfortable. To those around her who wish they have had the same opportunities at some point in their lives, who see stagnation as a sign of weakness and seem to think her desire to remain where she is a cause of worry, she is considered sad, a shut-in, pretentious, unhappy, hopeless, sick, and perhaps mentally ill.

But what of her happiness? What of her love for humanity? What of her desire to be a decent person? All of that seems to be lost in the shuffle of tired expectations.

Yet the counsellor rises above those expectations and continues to love people all the same, living her stupid, average life in peace.

 

And rumor has it that every night, she falls asleep with a smile on her face.


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