I Am Afraid Of The Light

‘Am I allowed to be?’ I wondered. ‘Will I ever be allowed to be? Please tell me that I will be allowed to be…’ Then I realised that it was my turn to get some coffee out of the coffee dispensing machine in the hospital canteen and everyone was looking at me wondering why I was just standing there. As I pressed the button for a regular Americano I found myself playing a kind of a fantasy game. In this fantasy game of mine I was imagining that what was coming out of the nozzle in the coffee-making machine wasn’t coffee at all but the sacred elixir of eternal life. In my imagination this was the elixir that could cure all my ills and totally heal all my problems. I threw myself into this fantasy exercise and it became real for me – I totally believed that the machine was dispensing the elixir of eternal life! I then became terrified that I might waste a drop and stood there holding up everyone else in the queue as I waited for one last drop, the one last drop that never actually came. I was afraid to move on in case it did, however. I was afraid to move on in case someone else might get it instead of me…


‘Allow me to be, allow me to be!’ I cried out in my anguish. ‘Will I ever be allowed to be? I asked myself, ‘Will I ever be allowed? Will I ever be allowed?’ My whole life I had been restricted. My whole life had been an exercise in restriction – no one had allowed me and I had never allowed myself either. No one else had permitted me to be and neither had I. My anguish was real, my anguish was tangible. I knew no difference. I knew no other way to be. ‘Tell me a different way,’ I wailed. ‘Show me a different way’ I cried out, entreating all the faces I saw around me. A security man was called. I was removed from the building. No one wants to know, no one wants to know. As I pressed the button I allowed myself to fall into my customary fantasy. I was to drink the sacred elixir. Every drop is precious, every drop is precious. I cried out in despair, I cried out in my loneliness. I was in a dark dark place; I was living under a shadow. ‘If only I knew how I could crawl out’, I told myself, but even as I said this I knew that I was lying – I was afraid to call out from under the shadow, I was afraid of the light. ‘Please don’t expose me to the light,’ I cried out in my terror – ‘please let me remain here in the shadows, where I feel comfortable.’ ‘Let me remain here in the shadows,’ I wailed, ‘let me stay in the shadows where I belong…’


‘Why won’t you let me be?’ I cried out to the security man who was forcibly escorting me out of the building, ‘why am I not permitted?’ The security man shrugged his shoulders – ‘It’s not up to me mate,’ he said, ‘I only work here. I’m just doing my job…’


I was in my fantasy world again where everything was okay. ‘It’s okay,’ I told myself, ‘everything’s going to be fine, everything’s going to be fine’. The rank smell of fear clung to my clothes and no one wanted to come near me. The sleepwalkers were everywhere – they’d walk right over you if you got in their way! They’d go through you for a short-cut. I told myself, I told myself. Nothing bad is happening, nothing bad is happening. I was making positive affirmations, I was taking back my power. ‘Confidence is everything in this game,’ I told myself. I was frightened in case I saw myself in the mirror. I knew then that I was already dead. ‘Confidence is everything in this game’ I told myself again. As I pressed the button I allowed myself to fall into my customary fantasy. I was afraid of the light I realised. I was a creature of the shadows…







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