In the mean time--Friday's recap
Today’s episode begins with Jill and TJ in the car driving to a doctor’s appointment to further investigate Jill’s tumor. Jill is in confessional and says that when she woke up, her first thought is that it would be nice to not be in pain all the time. She is nervous about the appointment. She meets with Dr. Konialian and he performs an exam and discovers a lump in her stomach area. He isn’t sure in feeling it if it is a tumor in the stomach or ovaries so he does a pelvic exam and determines that the tumor is in her uterus. They decide to perform a CaT scan and Jill worries about cancer and the pain of the testing.
Back at the house, Lisa, getting ready for the day, struggles with a sense of self and is nervous about her meeting with Rhonda because of abandoning her appointment to discuss her failure to complete her jewelry business task. She says in confessional that she just isn’t getting it and feels stupid and disappointed Rhonda and herself.
Jessica, sitting at the computer, receives an email from her father and is having mixed emotions about it. In confessional, she says that its clear that he misses her and is sending his love and support to her, but on the other hand, he says he is uncomfortable calling her while she is at the Starting Over house. She says, “I can’t help but feel that I’m not a priority.”
At the hospital, Jill and TJ arrive at the hospital Radiology department for her CT scan. Jill is given a liquid to drink to ensure proper scan results so they can get a clear image of the mass. TJ compliments Jill in confessional for getting through it and also in confessional; Jill says that she is really glad that TJ could be there for her.
Art, the radiologist gathers Jill from the reception area and takes her back for the scan. He instructs Jill to put on a gown and she lies down on the scan bed and tells her that she will need to hold her breath for 10 seconds at a time at intervals during the scan. In confessional, Jill says she doesn’t like going to doctors because it’s just a signal that something is wrong and that she doesn’t enjoy this process one iota.
Art and another radiologist find the mass and Jill completes the scan. Jill resigns herself to the waiting process on the way home from the hospital.
The ladies meet with Rhonda for group and Rhonda starts by telling Lisa that she will deal with her later. Lisa, in confessional says, that she knows Rhonda has her best interest at heart but that she still scares her and that she is shaking in her shoes when Rhonda speaks to her sternly. Rhonda turns to Jill and asks her how she is doing and Jill responds with, “Present.” Rhonda, alone with the camera, says the ladies in the Starting Over house have a tendency of making things up to feel better and keep themselves stuck. Today, in group, they will be discussing “Are you making it up or is it a fact”.
Rhonda says she believes that most people life their lives on a made up perception of what we think our life is and associates that with Jill, lacking health care insurance and quit taking care of herself so she made up a rationale and ignored her tumor to avoid having a hysterectomy and not being able to have children. Rhonda then asks Allison is she is present and she responds by telling her, “sort of.” Rhonda ties in Jill’s current health crisis to Allison’s past and current health issues. Allison turns to Jill and says, “To be honest, don’t steal my thunder. I had the hysterectomy.” Rhonda compliments her for telling the truth and says that being in pain and having illness makes us special and we stand out. In confessional, Allison says that she wants to stay sick because by staying sick, she doesn’t have to work on herself or own who she is. In group, Rhonda says, when you take away all the stories and look at the facts, and then you face the reality of your life.
She asks Christina what she has made up and Christina tells her that she has used not having her G.E.D. to avoid trying to get a good job and says she also uses her son by saying it will take too much time to get her education because she has to spend her time with her son.
TJ asks the difference between enabling and support and Rhonda explains that enabling helps people live in a fantasy and support helps them get back to reality. The group begins to talk about enabling and Rhonda asks Lisa to take center stage. In confessional, Lisa says she just knows she is going to get kicked out of the house and that she wants to crawl into a hole and just die.
At the front of the room with Lisa, Rhonda says to her, “You blame everyone else. Last night all I heard was I didn’t have enough leather…” bringing up Lisa’s failure to complete her jewelry making assignment. She turns Lisa’s excuses around on her and asks if it was her job to make sure she had enough supplies. Lisa gives excuses for each thing Rhonda brings up. To illustrate a point, Rhonda refers back to an incident with the car. Lisa arrived late to meet with Rhonda and when she finally arrived, Lisa asks if she is in trouble and says they rushed like crazy. Rhonda says, “Who’s responsible for you keeping an appointment.” Lisa replies, “I am,” to which Rhonda asks, “So why are you asking me if you are in trouble?”
Back in group, Rhonda says she was planning to give Lisa two steps because of her progress with Defining Adulthood and Reality Check out of Lisa’s 5 steps of Reality Check-Define Adulthood-Cut the apron strings- Walk without crutches and Soar in order to achieve her goal of Growing Up. Rhonda says she was hoodwinked and that now as a result of Lisa’s behavior yesterday, her steps are all erased on the screen. Lisa sighs heavily with disappointment.
Christina in confessional talks about the blank steps on the screen for Lisa’s progress in the Starting Over house and says if it were her, she would pack her bags and go home.
Rhonda tells Lisa that they are starting from ground zero—not a good choice of words based on Jessica’s story---and that when she meets with Lisa at lunchtime, she hopes that Lisa has come up with a solution to get herself out of this situation. When asked, by Rhonda, if she has anything to say, besides blaming other people, Lisa says nothing. Rhonda tells her, “This is your life, Lisa. Face the facts.” She pauses to see if Lisa will comment and then finishes by saying, “well, I guess Lisa’s not ready to speak. She advises the other ladies to not enable Lisa today and remember that it’s making it up or truth day and wishes them a good day as she leaves the room.
They sit in silence in the group room. In confessional, TJ says she doesn’t feel like Lisa is getting it and that Rhonda is justified in removing her steps. She says, “Either you wake up and do what you have to do or pack it up and I’ll help you (pack).”
Outside, Jill is speaking with the other ladies questions her spending habits that she would rationalize not taking care of her tumor and says she probably spent it on cigarettes. She starts to question her smoking habit and believes she poisoned her body instead of paying for health insurance. Jill chimes in that she found money to go to London for a weekend, but didn’t have health insurance. She continues with other extravagances that she had instead of paying for insurance by saying, “I have money to go to Loehmann’s to buy a designer dress for a party but I don’t have money for health insurance and do something practical.”
Rhonda meets on the patio with Jessica to discuss the memories our bodies hold. Jessica brings up the email from her father. She explains that she feels she is always the one to call him rather than the reverse and Rhonda says, “So,” and reminds her of the day’s focus from group. She tells Jessica that she has to decide if she really wants to talk with her dad or if this is a test. Jessica has only been connecting to her family through her pain and today, Rhonda wants her to switch that and connect with them through joy. She also wants Jessica to start sharing her hugging with the world. Jessica’s assignment is to hug at least 35 people, random strangers. Jessica is nervous because she fears pulling back from the hugs and not being present.
Rhonda meets with Lisa and Lisa says in confessional that “the worst is yet to come and I’m just waiting for it to happen.” Rhonda asks her why she thinks she was given the assignment of making and selling jewelry. Lisa says that she doesn’t know. Rhonda then asks Lisa what were the things that she told her she was really good at and Lisa tells her Customer service and selling. Lisa comes up with an excuse rather quickly and says, “It’s the making jewelry part,” but Rhonda interrupts her and asks, “Well, aren’t you creative.” Lisa confirms that she has told Rhonda that and is creative and Rhonda tells her that this was an exercise that she thought Lisa would ace.
Rhonda asks Lisa if she wants to conquer the jewelry and Lisa tilts her head to a side and says gives a rather ho-hum, “Yes.” Rhonda isn’t convinced. Lisa feels ashamed and wonders if she can fix the situation. Rhonda then tells her that she is the only client in the house that doesn’t call her. She tells Lisa that one of her (Lisa) fears is that when her parents come to visit, she will be going home with them and Rhonda says that might be a reality and asks Lisa what her plan is. Lisa says she wants to finish her necklaces and sell them. Rhonda wants a call at 8pm of everything she accomplished and tells her that today is the day she has to let Rhonda know that she is really ready for change.
Jessica stands on a courtyard sidewalk with a notepad ready to start giving her hugs. She approaches her first person and he declines her hug offer. She declines keep coming.
Back at the house, Jill is waiting for her results of her tests and is worried about additional surgeries.
Lisa is working on finishing her jewelry but is stressing over possibly being kicked out of the Starting Over house.
In the courtyard, Lisa finally gets a table of people for her hugs and she’s off and running. In confessional, Jessica says there were a lot of moms and children in the courtyard and in the past, she has avoided moms because of how they remind her of her own, but says that today it felt great to get those hugs from moms.
Jessica returns from her assignment having completed 67 hugs and tells Allison and Lisa how the day went. Lisa continues making her jewelry. Jessica tells her that after people heard her story, they came out of stores to give her hugs.
Jill receives a phone call with the results of her tests from Dr. Konalian and he confirms that the tumor needs to be removed and tells Jill that she may lose an ovary in the removal. He recommends removing the tumor soon because it will keep growing if she doesn’t.
Lisa hits the street with her jewelry and some flower arrangements. When people walk up, she tells them that she is selling her jewelry for $5 and approaches with a line of “Can I interest you in a necklace?” She confronts one potential customer that was carrying a coffee and said, “You can spend $5 on that, but not on a necklace from me,” and he replied, “Yep, pretty much.”
Dr. Stan meets with Jessica and they talk about her joy and her hugs. When asked how she felt from the hugs, Jessica says “It felt great because I was able to receive them.” Jessica makes the connection between the love and support of her housemates because she really only thought it could come from her mom.
Back on the sales beat, Lisa is now using her last customer’s coffee to attempt to sell necklaces. As people pass she says, “Can I interest you in buying one of my necklaces? They cost about the same as a coffee.” Lisa says she is deterred when people ignore her and wonders if a really good sales person would be able to overcome that. Lisa wanders over to a table and offers her necklaces to a gentleman and his two children and makes her first sales of the day.
Dr. Stan gives Jessica a box from Rhonda that is filled with “fun” things. Assorted bubbles, hopscotch and a hula hoop. Dr. Stan says that if he were less dignified, he would show her how to use the hula hoop. He ends up giving it a spin and the hoop drops quickly to the ground.
Dr. Stan stops by to visit Lisa and inquires about her day. Lisa cries and tells him that she sold necklaces but only sold 7. She goes from weeping to immediately speaking normal when he asks her the point of the exercise and she explains—in a normal voice—that she was feeling more confident from her other jobs and felt that this was the next level. Dr. Stan’s take on the assignment was that it was to help her examine how she deals with different situations. He tells her that it teaches survival and that her problem is that she has relied on other people to survive.
Lisa nervously calls Rhonda to explain the results of her project. Rhonda says, “Excellent!” when Lisa tells her that she only sold 7 necklaces, for about $35 of the $100 that Rhonda lent to her for the business with nothing left to pay her “employees”. Lisa says she hopes this gets her out of the dog house. Rhonda adds a part to the project and gives Lisa 72 hours to complete a business plan for her jewelry business to teach Lisa the ins and outs of a jewelry business and teach her the skills to open a business. Lisa’s excitement quickly turns quiet and in confessional she says that she really doesn’t understand why she has to create a business plan because she would much rather receive jewelry than make or sell it any day.
Jessica asks TJ to play a game of jacks with her. It’s a first for both of them it seems. In confessional, Jessica reveals that when she woke up, she really didn’t think she would be experiencing joy and be able to bask in it all day. She says the hugs lifted her up and the toys from Rhonda make it an amazingly joyous day and she believes it could be sustained and is excited over what’s to come.
Lisa tells Allison and Jill about her assignments to write a business plan and immediately Jill steps in to offer leads on how she can get information on writing her business plan. Lisa receives a package via courier. She opens it to find a start up kit for a business plan and Lisa goes right back into saying that she’s overwhelmed and says, “I can’t do this.”
Jill calls a friend and shares the info about her fibroids. Her friend sounds shocked and amazed by the news. She tells her friend that the doctor says she has to have a hysterectomy and cries as she tells him that she is really, really dealing with a lot.