I sometimes work in the Millview Psychiatric Hospital. There are some familiar faces that keep coming back to the hospital over and over again. They get better, they are discharged, then they become ‘mentally ill’ again and they come back.
The same phenomenon happens in prison all the time. Crime, Prison, Freedom, Crime, Prison…
And it happens every day too in the outside world. There are many different shapes and forms of emotional prisons or psychiatric hospitals. It can be a job that you don’t enjoy, a relationship that is abusive, or even an addiction…Break up and make up with the wrong guy, with the wrong job or with a substance… It can be absolutely terrifying to be alone, to be free, or to be you. (*for some people solitude is the prison)
On the contrary prisons can feel safe as we don’t have to question anything, we don’t have to make decisions etc. The price we pay of course is that we silence our True Self and that can lead to all kinds of mental and physical health problems. Freedom can feel overwhelming. Living a free life is a form of art that is not for the faint-hearted: It takes a lot of practice and self-love to master it.
We don’t talk nearly enough about what it is like to be alone for me, for you and for others. How do you cope with the silence, with the emptiness, with the gap between two ” hellos”? How do you cope with the nothing? And most importantly how do you cope with the feelings that break through the noise of daily distraction?
There is no two ways about it. In order to be free, you need to face it. ‘It’? What is ‘it’? You need to face You. You need to face the Soul of You and face the Fear of YOU. You need to bring everything that is in the shadow into the light. So you won’t feel like having to distract yourself all the time. Instead you will come to a place of acceptance of everything that is you. Suddenly all your prisons will make sense. When you meet the real, authentic, strong and independent you, that is where you will find love. And with that in your heart and with courage, you can open the door of your prison and walk out.