Charles Balis' Journal for the Week ending 1/17/97

Saturday, January 11, 1997

Sunday, January 12, 1997

Monday, January 13, 1997

10 am. Second Session with Peter Hossfeld. Peter came in and told me about an "out of body" experience that he had that week. What he related involved an uncontrolled loss of consciousness with autonomic nervous system involvement. Peter has interpreted the experience as a cross over into a higher plane of existence, but I'm thinking of the more prosaic explanations, like epilepsy or a brain tumor. Adult onset of epilepsy usually starts around Peter's age. I ordered some blood work, an MRI, and an EEG. Peter is quite threatened about any questioning of his spirtual beliefs, but I felt it was important not to screw around on this one.

2 pm. Thirteenth Session with Sarah Wright. Sarah described herself as falling into a recurring depression, so after a consult with her cardiologist, I switched her medication from the Ativan to Zoloft, 50 mg. once each morning. This will be the beginning of a six week trial. Sarah quite succinctly described her emotional symptoms as being afraid in crowds, being distressed by ordinary noise levels, unmotivated crying spells, and an inability to concentrate. At work, Sarah decided to stay on an extra month because they are having difficulty finding a replacement. Robby's AIDs is progressing fairly rapidly and Sarah is trying to have an opportunity to resolve a number of emotional issues with him. Sarah believes that Jeff's interest in Robby is waning somewhat, now that Robby is being cared for by Sarah. She believes that Jeff is inventing reasons not to spend time with Robby. I suspect that Jeff is repressing his feelings regarding Robby's illness and is avoiding Robby somewhat to help avoid the issues that it raises for him. Sarah hasn't repeated The Game with Glen recently, but just because she hasn't found the time. Sarah is convinced that she can skate the emotional issues involved in her sexual relationship with Glen and come out unscarred at the end.

Tuesday, January 14, 1997

4 pm. Conversation with Tom Bows. Sylvia was asleep when I went to her house for our session, but it gave me a chance to have a conversation with Tom Bows, who I met for the first time in person. Although he has a lot of hostility towards me, I found him genuinely likable. The guy has clearly been run ragged. He is pale and haggard looking. I told him that I thought he needed some sleep, but he just shrugged my suggestion off. He seemed pleased when I told him that Sylvia had told me how helpful and supportive he'd been through the last few weeks. But Tom believes that I've never met the "real" Sylvia. He says that I erred in prescribing medications for her so early after I met her. I argued that the physical symptoms she presented in our early sessions demanded pharmacological action. Tom said that he knew she was in bad shape. He even said that he was the one who urged Sylvia to seek medical help. Now, Tom is focused on the kids, whom he thinks of as his. He doesn't believe Sylvia to be capable of raising them, even as he says that he doesn't want to take the children away from her. I startled Tom by asking him if he is still in love with Sylvia. He clearly is, although he claims it is irrelevant. I told him that I thought not, but Tom believes that Sylvia has made up her mind about the divorce and that nothing can change how she feels.

Wednesday, January 15, 1997

Another fax arrived this morning. This one depicts six cupid pendants hanging by ribbons. There are three each of two types of cupids: one has his bow drawn and the other has his arrows quivered and is holding a laurel wreath with his angel wings outstretched. I keep joining this image to last week's image of the bus to the Castro. Has the Anonymous Faxer found love? There is something almost tawdry or commercial about this image, as though it didn't represent real love, but rather some facsimile thereof like Valentine's Day imagery. The angels aren't real angels, after all, but jewelry pendants. And none of the arrows have yet left their quiver. Perhaps it is an image about the anticipation of love. Perhaps it is a quest through the commercial district which is the Castro. Maybe next week's image will shed some light on the meaning of this one.

Thursday, January 16, 1997

4 pm. Twenty-Eighth Session with Anna Green. Anna spent a frustrating weekend with Martin trying to seduce him. She paraded around naked and received a series of massages, but he left her sexually frustrated. He said that he wasn't worthy of receiving her sexual favors. In fact, it sounds like our good friend Martin may have something of a foot fetish, combined perhaps with a masochistic tendency. And Anna is following her usual pattern of ecstasy in the first portion of her relationships followed by disillusionment as the reality takes over from her bloated expectations.

Friday, January 17, 1997

Arrow, Straight, Left, Earlier Arrow, Straight, Right, Later
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