Joy, therapy, and A Walk in Darkness….

 God only knows where I would be if I had not encountered Joy that fateful day at Ft. Carson.

I suppose my view on therapy today is somewhat parochial. At my lowest point however, I was willing to accept all the help I could get. Those days I spent in the small office recounting the pain I was feeling provided a rope to assist me in hanging on for another day. I could freely express my thoughts and punctuate it with venom and flying chairs. As much good as it did me to go through therapy, it is limited. The goal of therapy is to help you get to a point where you can stand on your own. A soldier who can’t stand on their own is useless on a battlefield.

Therein lies my problem with a continued reliance upon therapy and psychologists. At some point, I must be able to stand and deal with the issues which arise in my life. Running from the pain does me no good, facing it, baring my teeth and dragging myself to my feet after getting knocked down, is how one learns to stand. A newborn child needs milk to grow, but it doesn’t live off milk it’s whole life. As it grows into a mature human being the body develops a need for meat, vegetables, and other means of nourishment. Therefore, a continual need for therapy keeps the mind weak, it can’t grow strong if it is constantly pampered.

I do not mean to belittle people who continue their therapy. You know what you need to do to overcome your struggle. For some, therapy is a necessity, for me however, after almost a decade in therapy, I see no need to continue mine. Trust me, I know who to call if I crash back into my darkness. After spending the last few years trying to regain a sense of balance in my life, I would hate to start over from the bottom. If that is what it takes for me to be the best version of myself, I am willing to do it again (I would just rather not).

There is a place for therapy, and usually we find our way there when we hit rock bottom. When you reach the bottom, you know it. At the lowest point in my life, when I felt I was alone and no one cared if I lived or died, I was glad to have Joy in my corner. Our weekly meetings gave me the strength to try again. She would listen and let me vent until nothing was left, then she would encourage me to get up and give it another go. I am eternally grateful God placed her in my life. The story of A Walk in Darkness would not be complete without Joy. She saved my life.


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