The tears came quite unexpectantly
Between us, between the pain, across decades of life
On an empty BART train on the last day of the year.
“Will you please ask the voices inside my head to stop talking to me, it’s very upsetting” he said.
“Of course” I said, and I did.
I pleaded that they leave him be, this young man
who was being tortured by voices.
And yet, they began again. He yelled at them to give him peace. He screamed and screamed and then was filled with regret for disturbing.
“I am so sorry, it is so uncomfortable!” he said.
“I know. It is ok….” I said. I didn’t want to feed the voices.
My heart joined his and I looked deeply into his scared eyes, not knowing what would come out of my mouth, out of my heart.
“You are going to be ok. You will.” I said. I really didn’t know how he would be ok, or why I would say that, but my soul was drawn to comfort, to reassure, to soften the voices.
He blessed me for showing up. We smiled. I cried at what a brave man he was, encountering the voices alone. For those few minutes, I joined him. I cried for all those I have known living with voices who try to cause harm. And often succeed.
Blessings to this sweet man on his journey. With every smile and kindness he encounters, may the voices slowly grow fainter and fainter.
I wish it was that easy.