Do you remember as a child,
On slick, wet pavements,
Jumping over gaping cracks
That felt like crevices,
Giant rocky cliffs.
Misjudge and you are dead,
Burning for eternity
In a molten hell.
Now that I’m an adult in the world,
Those gaps have so much power to
Ruin life, change the course
And no one sees
As you’re falling through.
I had a bit of an emotional day today. I’m doing my sixth form placement and it happens to be at the college that I attended when I was seventeen. It was at the college where things started to go very wrong for me and so it brought back some really difficult memories that I have pushed down for many years.
Back then, I was struggling to get out of bed and I would cry all the way there and then all the way home. I felt like there was an actual weight pushing me down and making me heavy.
I didn’t realise it then but I think that I probably had really bad depression. It wasn’t spoken about back then and so I struggled through before dropping out and really spiralling.
I sat listening to the Transition Manager today and she was talking about mental health and how they help students who feel like they are drowning. I wondered if I would have been saved if these measures had been in place twenty years ago?
It has taken me fifteen years to get back on track and I wonder if my life would be totally different if I hadn’t slipped through the cracks. I lost all of my friends, I lost the chance at a career and I lost a lot of confidence. I think it’s great that we are now concentrating on this stuff so that more students don’t also disappear for fifteen years. That would be very sad.
7 thoughts on “i just slipped through the cracks”
You are so strong! Do what you always do, with love.
See! That’s exactly what I mean x
A lot of us slipped through the cracks back in the day. Colleges are doing a better job of helping students with emotional issues these days. I worked in a university police office. Most of wat they did was work to get students mental health support. We might have been different than most because we were a small campus.
I have a lot of respect for your resilience and determination. I agree with you, by the way, 100% that students can benefit from the support that’s available now (and wasn’t before). Sometimes we all go through rough times, and when that happens, that extra support makes all the difference. So now you can provide your students what you didn’t get, and make their lives better. I give you credit for that.
My college (university) had no counselors or real counseling back then. I didn’t like the school and haven’t kept in touch, but I hope they are offering all sorts of mental and emotional help for students. As Margot says above, I (too) respect your resilience. You persist. And more.
Brave write. You will be a stronger and more relatable teacher for what you have been through. Kids can tell.