The Boundary Ninja is a Time Lord
NOTE: This post discusses the BBC series Dr. Who and although I have tried to avoid them as much as possible, it does contain some minor and one major spoiler. The major one is labeled so that you can avoid reading it if you have not already seen the show. And if you haven’t seen the show, why are you still reading this? Go at once and watch! The first six seasons are available on Netflix for those of you with access.
I have recently been watching the BBC series Dr. Who (the most recent one) and am really enjoying it. Actually I watched the first season a few years back, but was unaware that at times the Doctor regenerates (allowing another actor to step into the role). I was so disappointed the first time this happened in the new series, that I stopped watching the show, sure I would not accept watching anyone else in the role of the doctor. However, my daughter, bless her, informed me that I had to go on, so I started watching again. And immediately fell in love with David Tennant. (If you’ve watched the show, you know why, and if you haven’t, again, WHY are you still reading here?).
You slowly learn more about who the Doctor is as the series goes on and I experienced a dawning realization. My therapist is a Time Lord from the planet Gallifrey. 🙂 Whoops, sorry, what I meant to say was that there were a lot of things about Dr. Who which reminded me of my therapist. So I thought it would be fun to compare the ways my therapist is like Dr. Who. So, with my tongue quite firmly pressed into my cheek, here’s my list:
1. Dr. Who Travels through Time.
OK, Dr. Who literally travels through time in a Tardis disguised as a blue police box, but when you remember trauma, it’s as if it’s still happening. So my experience in therapy is that of going back to a time when I was utterly alone and overwhelmed but this time someone goes with me. I travel back in time and find BN there waiting for me, not scared, and helping me to face it. So it turns out I wasn’t alone, because he’s a time traveler.
2. Dr. Who Focuses on the Good of the Other Person
Dr. Who always has a human companion and protects that person fiercely and does not count his own costs. He just does what is necessary. It’s so NOT about him. BN brings the same kind of focus to our relationship. When we are together, it is all about helping me and protecting me.
3. Dr. Who Hides So Much of Himself
He is the last of the Time Lords, wandering profoundly alone through time and space. He has seen and done things that cause him deep pain and regret, but he will not burden anyone with it. So his companions only catch glimpses of all that experience. He just shows his joy and delight in all that the Universe holds and his deep desire to share that with his companions. In the same way, BN keeps his own pain and regret and burdens out of the room. He shares his hope, and belief in my healing and his joy with me, encouraging me to experience the Universe and to be open and curious and to be always growing and reaching for more life.
4. Dr. Who’s Companions Always Leave with Someone Else
Dr. Who is immortal (ok, not quite, but with the regenerations, he lives for a long time, not to mention being able to see all of time. So for practical purposes, immortal. I mean he’s 905 years old at this point in the series) and is acutely aware that his companion is not. So he travels with them for a time but is always aware that they cannot stay. So he helps them grow and become more of who they are and the best that they can be, and then watches as they move away from him and find their life elsewhere, alongside someone else. OK, I’m pretty sure BN is not immortal, but he is outside of time in that he is not part of my “normal” life. And he is conscious that I need to find my life away from him and his job is to teach me how to do that and put himself out of work. But just as the doctor is always happy to see an old companion and the relationship is always intact, BN is still there and the relationship continues even when we’re apart.
5. Dr. Who Does Not Say “I Love You”
Seriously, someone on the writing staff of Dr. Who has been in therapy and is working out their issues writing this show. Dr. Who is very aware that he will outlive his companions so he will not let them get too close because he can’t face any more loss. And since he knows that he cannot provide them with a long term relationship, he will not hold out a promise of anything more than to travel together for a time. Even when it’s bleeding out of every pore he won’t say the words.
****SPOILER ALERT: When he says goodbye to Rose Tyler in an alternate dimension, knowing it is the last time they will ever see each other, she asks and his reply is to ask if it really needs to be said. When she says yes, he starts to say it, but it literally cut off on the cusp of saying the words even though they hung in the air. Gentle reader, I almost threw a shoe at my TV set and cursed the cruelty of the writers. OK, they make up for it later by providing Rose with a human clone of the doctor (unfortunately, an ability BN does NOT share) with whom to live out her life, but geesh!! *****END SPOILER
BN loves me, I know he loves me, but he will not say it. There are too many interpretations of those words and he will not hold out a promise of anything more than therapy. Like the doctor, that love shines out of him when we’re together, but always unspoken. So I can see his love lived out but do not get to hear the words. Which I understand, but I still really sympathize with Rose.
6. The Doctor’s Companions Take What They Can Get
The doctor’s companions know that they will not always be able to travel with him. Some of the funniest scenes are the present companion being thrown into the company of a past companion, but they go anyway. To have what time they can with him, going on incredible adventures and seeing broader horizons that they ever could have imagined is worth the cost of the pain they will suffer when they part and in some cases, knowing that he cannot or will not love them in the same way they love him. I don’t really have to go on to explain the similarity to BN for this one, right?
So there it is, I have finally solved the mystery of BN, except for one thing. Where DOES he keep that blue police box? Hmm, I’ve always wondered what was in his back room…