Late in 2002 – stress at work, coupled with the break-up of a long term relationship, the death of a close friend, and the fact that I still hadn’t come to terms with watching my mum die a couple of years before this, led me to what was probably the lowest point in my life.
I decided to do an unmanly thing, and took my doctor’s advice in going to speak to a counsellor.
I’m not sure whether it was because she couldn’t get over the novelty of having a man in the chair, or because I really was a basket case, but the sessions went on for longer than they really should have. My scepticism of the benefits of doing this were soon squashed, as I began to take a step back (with the help of a little medication), and take a fresh look at things. At the end, I sent my councillor a homemade ‘thank you’ card with the following written inside.
Life was safe behind the wall, emotions locked inside
From those who sought to hurt me, here I’d stay and hide
But grass was green on the other side, and here the earth was dead.
How could I climb to such a height; this wall’s inside my head!
I turned away.
I walked so fast on a dusty road; I could not read the signs
Found myself in a one-way street with happiness behind
I heard a voice call out to me, from where I could not see
And then I knew from where it came, a voice inside, it was me.
I found the strength to face the wall, but when I tried to climb
I fell, but tried again to scale the wall inside my mind
When near the top I almost slipped, back to the barren land
Then just in time appeared the strength of a helping hand.
I grasped it.
Now when I fear to lose control, there’s nowhere now to hide
I hear the voice inside me, and feel the strength inside
When I feel alone and lost in this strange new land
I know now how to ask for help and reach out for that hand.
Should I reach another wall it will never seem so high
No longer shall it block my path –
For now I’ve learned how to spread my wings and fly.