Supporting

Your wellbeing in mind & Norfolk and Suffolk NHS

Inside Out-a poem about mental illness

A Poem by Jonny Benjamin.

I was just finishing this short film when Robin Williams very sadly passed away.

I wrote the poem and created this film to show that we often never truly know what is going on in someone else’s mind, particularly if they are suffering.

I hope that someone who is suffering might be able to see this and relate, but most of all know that they are not alone and that as my last words hopefully illustrate, the suffering can be overcome.

Remember you can get help wherever you are in the world at any time. Find someone to speak to here: http://www.befrienders.org/

Inside Out

On the outside, I may be smiling
I might seem confident, eloquent, well-groomed,
But the inside of me is crumbling,
A prisoner in my own panic room.

My mind has become a cyclone,
Retaining everything in its wake,
So it feels like the cogs don’t stop,
And the churning of thoughts won’t ever break.

Sometimes it seems my heart
Will burst violently out of my chest.
Or that my guts are being smothered,
Under the weight of anxiety’s duress

I wish that I could tell you,
I’m longing to explain,
Because the day-to-day would be easier,
If I could share a little of this pain.

It’s not the words I’m looking for,
I have them all right here.
It’s the courage I need to say them,
That’s buried deep within all my fears.

The fear of what you’ll think,
The fear of what might change,
Or, maybe, it’s the fear in me,
That i’ll never find what I’ve lost again.

Each day I wake up hoping,
Some miracle has come at last,
And today I’ll discover peace of mind,
For this existence will have passed.

But each day is just the same,
Thus the delusions I’m having to ride,
And I’m so sure they’re beginning to notice,
As the despair I’m struggling to hide.

I’ve turned to stronger vices,
In the desperation for some relief.
But what provides momentary escape,
Serves only to prolong the grief.

I wish that I could tell you,
I’m longing to explain,
Because the day-to-day would be easier,
If I could share a little of this pain.

It’s not the words I’m looking for,
I have them all right here.
It’s the courage I need to say them,
That’s buried deep within all my fears.

The fear of what you’ll think,
The fear of what might change,
Or, maybe, it’s the fear in me,
That i’ll never find what I’ve lost again.

The inner critic is deafening,
Any self-esteem hangs by a thread,
I’m growing fonder of these four walls,
I’ll take isolation over social dread.

It’s not that I don’t want to see you,
But when I do I am self-consumed
By feelings of unworthiness
And the worry our words will dry out too soon.

Forgive me if I don’t say hello,
Or slip out the door without any goodbye,
I’ve convinced myself you’re not concerned,
And it’s getting hard to look into anyone’s eyes.

I wish that I could tell you,
I’m longing to explain,
Because the day-to-day would be easier,
If I could share a little of this pain.

It’s not the words I’m looking for,
I have them all right here.
It’s the courage I need to say them,
That’s buried deep within all my fears.

The fear of what you’ll think,
The fear of what might change,
Or, maybe, it’s the fear in me,
That i’ll never find what I’ve lost again.

And what if it HAS gone, never to come back,
Not all things return once apart,
Well then we’ll just create a new beginning,
There’s no limit to the infinite times we can start.