Friday, January 2, 2015

One-Handed Therapy

It must have been a slow day. One can only wonder why New York Magazine chose to publish this story of Tara Henson’s postmodern therapy.

Henson explains why she ended 2013 in the slough of despond:

For most of my 38 years on earth, I've never bothered with New Year's resolutions. Who needs more reasons to feel like a failure? I have a long mental checklist of things I'd like to change, but if I spend too much time resolving to correct all my shortcomings, I just end up adding "doesn't keep her word" to my catalogue of inadequacies. So, at the end of 2013, in the midst of one of the most challenging times of my life (loss of parents, end of a marriage, big college debt), I found myself craving the solace that a neatly written list of New Year's resolutions offers.

What were her goals?

I wanted a fresh start, looser pants, a boyfriend. I also knew that getting too ambitious would be the end of any progress I might make, and a juice fast or some "journaling" was not going to cut it. So I tried to make a different kind of New Year's resolution. I asked myself, "What could you promise to do on a daily basis that would, without a doubt, make you happier?"

What did she resolve at the beginning of 2014?

It didn't take long to arrive at the answer. I vowed that every day, for 365 days, I would enforce a strict routine of belly laughter and orgasms. This goal seemed within reach, and had the added bonus of warding off my impending depression. I began January 1 with a hot bath and a visit to Funny or Die.

Did she end up 2014 with, say, a boyfriend? Of course, she did not.

She began a romance during the summer. It ended around Thanksgiving.

Henson is proud of the fact that she did not allow a mere boyfriend to interfere with her one-handed therapy. Through it all she kept her resolution.

She does not understand that her special road to happiness might be shutting other people out of her life.

So, she ended the year exactly where she started it—alone, with her hand:

For New Year's, I've decided to go out with a bang to honor my accomplishment. I had a few invitations to parties, but tonight I will be staying in. I will wake up, come in bed, cook myself an omelette, watch a Gene Wilder comedy, come again, go to the gym, come again when I get home. I'll take a nap, make myself a good dinner, watch Broad City, and take a bath where I come some more. I'll go to bed tonight knowing that no matter what happened in 2014, I have the capacity to expand my happiness. One-handed, and one day at a time.

Excuse the expression, but on the one hand Henson must count as one of the very few who really did keep her New Year’s resolutions. She seems to be taking considerable pride in her achievement.

On the other hand, she has not succeeded in reaching her relationship goal.

Now, do you think that writing a story like this is going to enhance her prospects for finding love and romance in 2015?

2 comments:

Kaiser Derden said...

so she spent the year like a late teen boy with a stack of Playboy magazines and she thinks she's discovered something ?

Sam L. said...

Answering your question: NOPE. And publishing her story is not going to be helpful...except to her shrink.