by Pierre Garau

I spent the last ten years “doing hair”, from the south of France to Paris, from London to Montreal to Ireland to South Asia to California. I left my family, my people, my home, my life, I left it all behind searching, seeking, far away from riding dragons and saving fantasy worlds…

By Pierre Garau

There’s a time in our lives when we might need to talk, and not simply to confide in the people that are the closest to us. Within us is the need to express our very soul in the deepest way possible to someone new to our world, someone with the incapacity of any judgement, someone who is simply there to listen to us easing our troubled hearts, becoming its compass for us to navigate through an ocean of questions, towards the answers that always lie deep below the waves.

“Going into therapy” does not mean you’re weak, or sick, it doesn’t mean failure. On the contrary, it takes strength to make such a decision, it takes courage to be willing to meet ourselves, to look at ourselves in the mirror, instead of looking for external validation from the others… it takes maturity to be curious about yourself in order to move further.

Writing the pain and emotions away helps a little, but talking to a stranger who listens with their heart and soul is where true healing begins. I like to do both, because I believe the more we share, the lighter our burdens.

I was lucky to have started seeing that special someone right at the start of the biggest lockdown of the world’s history.

The newly infamous virus that caused us all to put our lives on pause to preserve it, and to save others, that virus also put us back on the same level; whatever our wealth, our skin colour, our gender, our sexuality, we were all facing the same enemy capable to bring us down.

It’s a shame that we needed a pandemic to realise that we’re all human beings with red blood streaming in our veins, thanks to a beating heart. And even more shameful to see that it wasn’t enough. This pandemic, as scary and unpleasant as it can be, shall, I hope, help us see the world as it should be seen, care for the planet as it should be cared for, and most of all, value lives as they should be valued.

In my case, this world gone mad upset me to a point that I couldn’t go out as much as before, and when I say the world’s gone mad I’m not talking about our friend Corona, but more about medias, racism, harassments, hate, social medias…a new technologic era feeding us the troubles of humanity everlasting for far to long, trapping us in a cage like hamsters churning on the wheel of negativity. I was already lost enough in my life, I did not need to add more confusion and sadness within my walls.

Since I was a little boy, I’ve always dreamed of becoming an actor. That kid within me carried enough imagination to jump on top of an open storybook in order to get into it, Mary Poppins secrets were revealed. When I discovered a film called “The NeverEnding story”, that was my aha moment…I wanted to become an actor to allow me to ride a dragon and save a world of fantasy. In case you haven’t seen it…The NeverEnding Story is about a boy who happens upon a magical book that tells of a young warrior who is given the task of stopping the Nothing, a dark force, from engulfing the wonderland world of Fantasia. But it is so much more…it is about self-confidence, courage, and empathy, luck, dreams and wishes, and the power of the imagination.

Who can say they have never dreamed of that fantastical world? I’m sure everyone of you had a dream when you were little. How many parents and teachers at school heard children chatting all together about what they wanted to be when they grow up?

“When I grow up I want to be a doctor, when I grow up I want to be an astronaut, a veterinarian, a singer… when I grow up”…

…You’re now all grown up and how many of you are living the life of your childhood dreams? How many of you are living a life that you actually chose? You may not have to be honest with the people around you  but you owe the truth to yourselves because you are wortht it, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

Truth be told, our realities make us easily forget our dreams. Education, society, unfortunate events… there are so many factors that can drive us onto different paths far away from our childhood fantasy.

I spent the last ten years “doing hair”, from the south of France to Paris, from London to Montreal to Ireland to South Asia to California. I left my family, my people, my home, I left it all behind searching, seeking, far away from riding dragons and saving fantasy worlds…all those acting promises done to “young me”.

Despite all the landscapes, all the culture, all the people that I met, the relationships that I had, the love that I shared, I still was a hairstylist, away from my family, but 315,569,520 seconds older.

This feeling of living the wrong life for too long hit me hard on every single inch of my body. I envisioned myself looking at me from above, about to turn right knowing that I should turn left, with the incapacity of doing anything to stop me. I could shout to me as loud as I could, I was about to take the wrong path no matter what.

But is there really such thing as a wrong path? And therefore a good one? Is life’s journey reduced to one path?

It turns out that my “wrong path” actually opened me more to my emotions, revealing the sleeping writer sheltered in my mind. When there’s nothing else to do but close your eyes and sit still, even for just a few minutes, a whole new world opens up before you…your inner world.

Every single challenge we face has been presented to us to direct us towards the next right thing. A door never closes without another one opening, one that you should have chosen earlier, one that you should walk through, before facing the final door that closes forever.

And what life is teaching me right now, writing these words, is that it’s never too late…

After all, what if you were your own special someone?

Read another piece, this one is about PTSD, written by Tess Bacchus.

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