Saw a psychiatrist today about my child's mental health. She is 6. This means somewhere along the line her life has become so disordered that cracks appeared in the wall of her mental stability. In an attempt to hold it all together she shut down everything that was none essential - this including eating, talking, expressing her needs, toileting, getting dressed, leaving the house, loving and playing. The only thing that was left was an empty shell of child desperately trying to salvage herself by clinging onto these fragments. The fragments held together were too small, too minute to keep out the emptiness which engulfed her and those around her. She is 6. She screamed and attacked us in an attempt to connect. Our burnt-out hearts felt stronger discipline was needed - we too started to cling to the cracks to hold the show together. In the joint shadow of our emptiness we pushed her away, where she was further engulfed by the shadows. She is 6. Somewhere we have failed her. She is 6.
This is the thing - we have not failed her. She is 6 but she is overwhelmed and uncertain and depressed. These things have their own rhythm, depression grabs and claws to maintain it's hold and robs us in front of us. We cannot help but fail her but at the same time we are supporting her as best we know. Depression is a dark land, full of mirages to entice travellers to it's shores. She is 6. She doesn't have a guide back. Neither do we. Together we must find one.
Mental health issues affect all, not just the person at the heart of it. Joins hands to lead from this dark place. Form families and communities to protect and cherish those most at risk. Love. She is 6, may her life be loved, cherished and blessed.
"May all beings have happiness and the causes of happiness,
May all beings be free from suffering and causes of suffering
May all beings have the happiness that is beyond suffering
May all beings be free from anger,.attachment, and aversion"
Buddhist Prayer, The Four Immeasurable's.