My TA journey, a Poem by Janet Stevenson

My TA Journey

We are very fortunate that Janet Stevenson, one of our students, has shared this beautiful poem with us about her TA Journey. It really is a powerful read:

My TA Journey

I was a much-longed-for baby when I entered this world
My mother, at 43, had lost her first girl.
Just a year further on and along came a boy
A child of each gender would give her much joy.

I’d been a bad-tempered baby, or so I was told
But my brother was contented and good as gold.
So I felt I’d done wrong and it filled me with shame
Yet, as a baby, was I really to blame?

Experiences and perceptions shaped little me,
Unconsciously scripting my destiny.
I learned right from wrong and was never wild:
Becoming a typically adapted child.

Injunctions abounded in my little head;
“Don’t worry your mother” I remember it said.
“Don’t feel, don’t be angry, it’s a terrible sin,”
So ire became confusion, as I kept it locked in.

When people were rude and should have caused rage
Instead I felt muddled, my mind in a haze.
“Don’t blow your own trumpet” kept pride in its place:
Praise made me embarrassed and red in the face.

“Be thoughtful and generous, and share what you’ve got;
There are millions in the world who don’t have a lot.”
So I shared and I cared and that gave me strokes.
“She’s a thoughtful girl,” said a number of folk.

At school, I worked hard and was conscientious
Sometimes too much and a touch over anxious.
I worried and agonised over getting it right
Reworking my homework until late in the night.

Once, when quite young, I spent a few days
With a family nearby while my parents were away.
But something took place, which I recall well,
Making me grow a protective shell.

There were three of us girls with some money to spend
In the shop down the road, just on the bend.
They chose what they wanted, leaving nothing for me
I am hurt and upset, but I won’t let them see.

So I learned to be strong and to keep things inside,
Emotions in check helped me to survive.
Be perfect and please others are strong drivers too
Under stress, they’re unchecked and that just won’t do.

I want to be silly, to giggle and laugh
Live life to abandon, take a walk in the park
Splash in the puddles, sing on the train
Play with my grandchildren, be a child once again.

Transactional Analysis is helping me see
The scripty behaviour that’s shaped me to be.
Yet awareness brings insight and choice to my mind
It’s time to make changes and – to me – be more kind.

Janet Stevenson
26 May 2013