Friday, March 25, 2011

all in a day's work

It was about five pm and I had just wrapped my last therapy session for the day. I was just packing my things away when I overheard my eight year old client Jack* talking to his mother. By talking, I mean it was the Spanish Inquisition. His mother was grilling him about what we did during the session. The conversation went something like this:

Mom: What did you do with Teacher Ariane?

(Start of Segue)

People call me "Teacher" at work because of some stupid tradition which dictates that if you, god forbid, do a little instructing, you become a "Teacher" by association. I have nothing against teachers, believe it or don't, it's just that I'll never be comfortable with the label the way I am comfortable with "dude" or my own, personal, given name. For example, I have been begging our new receptionist at the clinic, for the last three weeks, to drop the "Maam" (Don't even get me started with that awful, awful title of "refinement", I only call women "Maam" when I'm secretly mocking them in my head.)

I finally had it this afternoon with the receptionist and finally told her, "If you call me Maam again, I will gut you like a fish. Alive."

Hopefully, that sent the message across.

(End of Segue)

Jack: Puzzles.

Mom: You fixed puzzles? Okay. What else did you do?

Jack: Tool shelf.

Mom: You also fixed a tool shelf? Nice. And then what else?

Jack: Draw story book.

Mom: Then you drew a storybook. Is that all you did?

There was a pause. Which was followed by what could have been a sigh. And then, he answered.

Jack: Working. Always working.

And even though I couldn't see the satisfied look on his mother's face, I knew that Jack had finally given her the answer she wanted.

I think I should start working my clients like a nine to five. Only I already am working a nine to five, and oh boy, is it fun.

And if you're Sheldon Cooper, yes, that was sarcasm.

*not his real name

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