Word of the day: Courage

As you may remember I have been studying a psychotherapy course since February this year.  After having finishing the gruelling task of the 4k word essay, they hit us with a new assignment last weekend.  We now have to write approximately 750 words of self-assessment.

When I told Nicci what we had been asked to do she said; ‘you know what, over the last few years what you’ve gained is courage.’  She suggested I therefore simply write the words ‘this is courage’ – ignoring the word count rule.  (I didn’t of course).

I have gained courage, it’s true.  But it’s amazing how easy it is for something to knock the wind out of your sails, and you realise we are all weak and vulnerable deep down, no matter how courageous we might tell ourselves we are.

The whole point of the course is to challenge yourself, push to discover new things about who you are.  You deal with issues in therapy when you find you have unpicked a pesky little thread which unravels out of you, in the carpet space between you and your therapist.

Courage definitely comes from within, but having supportive people around you should not be underestimated.  I think I wrote a year or so ago about a fortune cookie I got when I was in Seattle, which said; ‘you will always be surrounded by true friends’.  I decided I was going to keep it with me always.  It seems to be working, because I am still amazed at how lucky I am with the people I am surrounded by.  This includes the great group of fellow students whom I am learning a lot from, and it is a pleasure to give up entire weekends to spend with.

But I don’t have to tell any of you reading this, who are transgender, about courage. Whether you are ‘out’ or not, it still takes courage to question who you are even if you are only admitting it to yourself.

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