A stitch in time…

Twenty-two years old Chinelo sat nervously in the office of her therapist, fiddling with the hem of her shirt. “I just can’t stop thinking about how it’s become increasingly worse in the past months,” she said, her voice shaking slightly. “Whenever there’s a talking stage, I feel all of the resentment, anger, and fear from the past slowly creeping up until it consumes me, pushing me to do something idiotic.”

Her therapist nodded understandingly. “It’s completely understandable to feel that way after what you’ve been through,” she said. “However, it’s important to remember that not all men are like the ones who hurt you.”

Chinelo looked skeptical. “I know that intellectually,” she said. “But emotionally, it’s hard to trust anyone.”

“I understand,” the therapist said. “But we need to work through those emotions so that you can move forward.”

Chinelo took a deep breath. “Okay,” she said. “Where do we start?”

Over the coming weeks, Chinelo worked tirelessly with her therapist, digging deep into her trauma and confronting her fears.

One day, she recounted a particularly vivid dream to her therapist. “I was walking through a forest, and then I saw myself, but she was not me,” she said, pointing at herself emphatically. “Long dark hair, piercing green eyes, and this dark energy I couldn’t place.”

Her therapist nodded, encouraging her to continue.

“She led me to a group of men who had hurt me before,” Chinelo said, her voice shaking. “And then she danced around them, taunting them, and then she grabbed one of them by the throat and held on till his neck lost control.”

Her therapist listened patiently and then spoke softly. “It sounds like your dream showed you your dark side,” she said. “But it’s important to remember that you can control that part of yourself.”

Chinelo nodded slowly, taking in her therapist’s words. “Hmm… I don’t want to, one day, become somebody I don’t recognise,” she said.

“You won’t be,” her therapist said firmly. “That’s why we are working tirelessly to help you discern and control those feelings.”

Over time, Chinelo learned to identify and manage her emotions, and gradually, she could let go of the bitterness and resentment she felt towards men. It wasn’t easy, but with her therapist’s help, she could move forward and open herself up to love and trust once again.

And although the memory of her dream stayed with her, a reminder of the darkness inside her, she knew that she had the strength to confront it and keep it at bay.

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