He was a funny guy, in a caring field. He had a somewhat bombastic personality buoyed by a not-so-silent confidence that had been cultivated by helping so many people over the years. He worked in one of those therapy mills (you know the type, lots of fancy equipment with each therapist seeing too many people simultaneously) and despite the obstacles to providing therapy, he moved quicker than any other therapist in the building (he had to, his treatment rooms were the farthest from the gym). The staff loved him; he understood what made each person “tick”, which was good for him because it allowed him to maintain a positive relationship with every person (which in turn, allowed him to get what he needed when he needed it). He had upward mobility and was being crafted as a potential successor to the owner of a business with no caseload herself and 30 employees. Things were looking up.
He was lucky; he did not become emotionally invested in his patients like the other therapists would do. He would do with them what he could, and (hopefully) they would get better. He would go home later that night and not concern himself with his work again until the next morning.
It was a good life, but even good lives are frustrating. At least a few days per week, he walked into the clinician’s office, sat at his desk and said, “This job would be great if not for the fucking patients.”