One day you finally knew
what you had to do,
and began, though the voices
around you kept shouting
their bad advice-
though the whole house began to tremble and you felt
the old tug at your ankles.
"Mend my life!" each voice cried.
But you didn't stop.
You knew what you had to do,
though the wind pried with
its stiff fingers at the very foundations-
though their melancholy was terrible.
It was already late enough
and a wild night,
and the road full of fallen branches
But little by little,
as you left their voices behind,
the stars began to burn
through the sheets of clouds,
and there was a new voice, which
you slowly recognized as your own,
that kept you company as you strode deeper and deeper into the world,
determined to do
the only thing you could do-
determined to save
the only life you could save.
(Mary Oliver, 1986)
If you are about to begin psychotherapy, you are in good company, heeding the ancient piece of advice given to seekers at Delphi "Know Thyself".
No matter what brings you here: anxiety, depression, addiction, relationship problems, self-esteem issues, grief, anger, guilt, or simply the desire to find out more about yourself - this could be the beginning of the journey the poem speaks of.
Psychotherapy can become the safe vehicle for this journey, and your therapist, the reliable, skillful guide and companion on the path. Welcome!
If you have been in therapy before, and find yourself still/again grappling with seemingly the same issues, consider this: nature is cyclical, and timing matters.
Who you are today is not who you were two or five or ten years ago.
Your willingness and your capacity to engage with yourself has grown.
This may be your time.