Transcript of 11th Session between Charles Balis, M.D. and Ms. Katherine Lippard, Wednesday, July 9, 1997 at 4:00 pm.

Dr. Balis: Hello, Katherine.
Ms. Lippard: Hi.
Dr. Balis: Are you okay?
Ms. Lippard: Yeah. Just a little scared, I guess.
Dr. Balis: What are you afraid of?
Ms. Lippard: Feelings. Losing it. Last week was really hard. I know you warned me there would be hard times, but I don't think I was ready for that. I've been dreading this all day--going through that again.
Dr. Balis: I understand. You're feeling very powerful emotions, probably ones you're not used to.
Ms. Lippard: Not used to? I guess fucking not. Sorry--that was uncalled for. But no, the only thing I've felt for my father since...oh, since high school graduation I guess, is a kind of weak resentment. Maybe a little longing.
Dr. Balis: What happened at your graduation?
Ms. Lippard: He didn't show up. And no, he didn't say he would--I hadn't heard from him in years already. I just had this magical notion that he would be there. I mean, it was the biggest day of my life to that point, surely he would know that and show up. Show up because he loved me and because he was proud of me. But he didn't. And that's when I knew...oh, here I go again.
Dr. Balis: That's okay, Katherine.
Ms. Lippard: Yeah, great. I'm here for five minutes and crying already. See? This is what I was afraid of. I don't want to spend all my time crying over things I can't change. That's getting nowhere.
Dr. Balis: On the contrary, it's a very important step. How much crying over your father did you do before you started therapy?
Ms. Lippard: A lot when he left. A couple of months or so.
Dr. Balis: Then what?
Ms. Lippard: Then I quit. I thought I'd see him again, and he did send a couple of postcards. He even called two or three times, but I just ended up bawling the whole conversation and so did my mom. I guess he couldn't take that, because he finally stopped. Or else he died.
Dr. Balis: Do you believe your father's dead?
Ms. Lippard: No. I can't. I want my Daddy to be alive.
Dr. Balis: So you...
Ms. Lippard: Doctor Balis? I'm sorry--this is empty.
Dr. Balis: Here, there's more.
Ms. Lippard: Thanks. Oh, man, I'm going to be sitting in a drift of soggy tissues before this is all over. At least you have a good supply, or I'd be dripping all over the furniture.
Dr. Balis: That's okay. Everything is ScotchGuarded.
Ms. Lippard: ScotchGuarded! Oh, that's great! That's a good one. Oh, man. Thanks, I needed that.
Dr. Balis: Are you ready to go on?
Ms. Lippard: Almost. Do you have any water or anything?
Dr. Balis: Yes, it's here. I'll get it.
Ms. Lippard: I did it! I did it! I got you out from behind the desk! Glory be, the doctor has legs! But you're wearing pants.
Dr. Balis: What did you expect?
Ms. Lippard: Well, you know, I've heard newscasters don't bother wearing pants, because you never see their legs. You know, you're a nice looking man, Doctor Balis. No flab, good posture. Handsome, boyish face. Nice.
Dr. Balis: Thank you. Here's your water.
Ms. Lippard: Thanks.
Dr. Balis: Katherine, would you like to return to your father some other time?
Ms. Lippard: Would that be okay? I mean, I know I have to do this. And I will, I promise. It's just that...not now, okay? I'm not ready right now.
Dr. Balis: That's fine. This is new to you--it's okay to take it slow. Is there something else you'd like to talk about?
Ms. Lippard: Yeah, there is. I went out with Jake again. A few times, actually.
Dr. Balis: And how was that?
Ms. Lippard: We went to the new sculpture exhibit at the Museum of Modern Art. We talked a lot. He's very calm., that's not the word. I mean he thinks a lot. Intellectual, I guess. But it turns out he's into excitement, too.
Dr. Balis: How so?
Ms. Lippard: Well, he says he's an adrenaline junkie. He says the motorcycle's only part of that. He goes backwoods hiking, downhill skiing, rock climbing. He wants to take me hang gliding or on an ultralight, whichever I choose. What do you think?
Dr. Balis: I think those both sound like very dangerous activities, particularly with no training. I'd be concerned about your safety.
Ms. Lippard: Oh, Jake has a very high rating--just short of instructor. He's certified to have passengers.
Dr. Balis: I didn't know there was a certification system for those activities.
Ms. Lippard: Well, there's none, really. Not by law, anyway. But there's a sort of self-governing body that sets rules and standards.
Dr. Balis: I see.
Ms. Lippard: I'm leaning toward hang gliding. Have you ever been up to Fort Funston, where they launch off the cliffs over the ocean?
Dr. Balis: No, I haven't seen that.
Ms. Lippard: It's sort of near the zoo, on the Great Highway. I've watched them hang glide there. It's quiet, just you and the wind. Close to nature, part of the sky. In fact, Jake recited part of a poem about that. Something about being one with the sky, that sort of thing. See? Jake's not all dark and brooding; he has a lighter side.
Dr. Balis: I don't recall saying he was dark and brooding. Is that a concern of yours?
Ms. Lippard: You didn't say that? I guess that was Phil. Well, the no laughing thing. And the poems about night to be recited only at night, you know? But he has fun, too. And he wants me to have fun with him!
Dr. Balis: How do you feel about Jake?
Ms. Lippard: I like him. He's smart. He', adventurous. He's good-looking. He can talk about anything. I could really fall for this man.
Dr. Balis: What about other activities away from Jake? Have you been out on your own any? Or with Phil?
Ms. Lippard: Yeah, I...well, no come to think of it, I haven't. I've pretty much been going out with Jake.
Dr. Balis: Is that enough for you? I remember how excited you were about "getting a life," as you put it.
Ms. Lippard: Well, like you said, it's okay to take it slow. I have more life now that I did a few weeks ago. Don't push it, Doctor Balis. I'm enjoying my time with Jake. Isn't that enough for now?
Dr. Balis: You have to answer that.
Ms. Lippard: Yes. Yes, it is.
Dr. Balis: Hmm. So are things getting physical with Jake? We haven't discussed how you feel about that.
Ms. Lippard: We've made out a little, yeah. But Jake's a nice guy, he's not pushing anything. It's like he's not dating me for my body. He's actually said that he's more interested in my mind. But there's a healthy attraction there, too. What do you mean how I feel about that?
Dr. Balis: I just don't know what your attitudes are about sex, that's all.
Ms. Lippard: Well, I'm not a virgin. I don't have anything against sex--I think it's nice. But I think there should be more to a relationship.
Dr. Balis: That's a healthy attitude.
Ms. Lippard: Thank you.
Dr. Balis: Katherine, I keep coming back to the hang gliding. It really is a dangerous sport, and I'm concerned for your safety. It's not a bad idea to know what you're getting into in any situation. You might consider learning more about it--maybe taking a lesson or two before you go up, even as a passenger.
Ms. Lippard: Your concern is duly noted, Doctor, but I am an adult. I've lived on my own for years and excelled in a world dominated by men. I think I know how to take care of myself.
Dr. Balis: Of course you do, Katherine. I didn't mean my concern to be taken as an insult.
Ms. Lippard: I know--it's part of your job. But you'll see. I'll come in next week all in one piece. And maybe, I'll be able to talk about my father then.
Dr. Balis: That would be fine.
Ms. Lippard: Okay, then I'll see you next time.
Dr. Balis: Good night, Katherine.
Ms. Lippard: Goodbye.
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