Writing from opposite points of view, I thought of this whilst at swimming training a few nights ago and thought I'd write it down:
SHRINKING, SHRINKING, GONE
The psychologist extends a wrinkled hand.
'Good morning, Sarah. How are you today?'
I sit down in one of the two chairs in the room. He just looks at me, comprehending, for a second. Then he turns to my file.
'It says here you're suffering from...' A scan of the papers. 'Post traumatic anxiety. Is that right?'
His features twist into the rough lines of worry. When he turns the page, the sound is like a thousand bullets ricocheting through the room.
'Would you like to evaluate on this?'
He swallows nervously. My silence is unnerving him, as it usually does with most others.
'Would you like to talk about the incident?'
Does it look like I want to 'talk about the incident'?
'Would you like to talk about anything at all?'
Heaving a sigh, he leans forward on his seat, staring directly into my unchanging eyes. 'I can understand this is hard for you -'
I fight off the urge to roll my eyes. What he doesn't seem to understand is that if I haven't talked about it to my closest friends, or family, there is no way in hell I'm going to spill my guts to a complete stranger.
' - it's understandable what you must be going through -'And how does that make you feel?
' - and how does that make you feel?'
I don't move. I don't twitch. I don't even blink.
'Please say something.'
I don't think so.
'Sarah.' Another sigh. 'I'm here to help.'
And I'm here to fill out your next pay cheque.
He taps his fingers impatiently. I can see he's trying to swallow back his annoyance; that he's been trained just for this. The problem cases. The ones that don't talk. Well, let me tell you something: I don't want
to talk. I've had enough of that.
Finally, it seems, he draws up the courage to move on. Picking up the remainder of my file, he lists my 'symptoms'. Anti-social behaviour, lack of appetite, mood swings, lacking concentration, and other points wavering on the borderline to depression.
'Anxiety, inability to sleep...'
Is it that hard to understand that some things just can't be cured?
'Constant tiredness, suspected paranoia...'
That some wrongs can't be made right?
'Drop in academic results, introvertial behaviour...'
Well, doctor, did you know shrinks have the highest suicide rate?
'Unresponsive.' A hard look. 'Sarah, are you listeni -?'
The buzzer goes, signalling the hour. I stand up and leave, without a word.
Yeah, as you can see my character's a bit arrogant about this stuff. It's from a very opposite perspective from what I usually write (which my English teacher says is 'good practice')