I always think Well-Being is a bit like the new slightly over-educated receptionist who greets you at the front desk of a doctors surgery. She’s somewhat inappropriately dressed in a light blue waistcoat suit – over a cream blouse with a too-large scarf tied in a floppy bow. Rather like a British Airways stewardess.
She doesn’t quite fit into this place – a bit too sharp. A bit too clean.
She looks up and greets you when you arrive and asks you to sit down and to consider your life.
She tells you that if she has a moment, she may show you around the place:
Calling you over to her desk, she gestures towards the corridor that runs off into the building. The first door on the left is Stress and next to it, PTSD. She tells you both rooms are always busy. Sometimes the therapists become overwhelmed by the high demand for their help. Sometimes the Stress therapist swaps rooms with PTSD.
Hung on the wall between the two doors are a couple of posters. They have the words Imposter Syndrome and Perfectionism printed beneath some calm photos of waterfalls and mountains.
Across the corridor, the wall is made of glass. You can see into a larger room filled with tables and some comfy chairs. There’s a flip-chart on a stand. This is the room reserved for visiting proponents of Current Fad.
Jane Well-Being tells you Shirley Mindfulness is due to fly in from California for a week’s intensive work in the room. Apparently Prof. Atkin’s diet therapy sessions were well attended a few years ago. Jane tells you the room still smells a bit.
The last door on the right – just before the double swing doors – has the label, Burnout, incised into the wood.
Jane tightens the scarf around her neck, and pushes open both swing doors at the end of the corridor. This is the Prep Room. She tells you it all gets a bit more medical from here on. There are doctors, specialists and other highly qualified professionals – all looking a bit serious.
Various doors open off the prep area into smaller rooms. Everything is white and wipe-able.
Jane points to the left. That’s the door to the Emergency Therapy Suite. Apparently there’s a corridor that links it to the Hospital next door.
Jane spins on her sensible heels and gestures to the door on the right.
That is the Depression therapy room. She shrugs her shoulders. The next door along is Depression B.
She points at the next door. That’s Depression C she tells you. She shrugs again and tells you they are all still learning. The doctors categorize depression by severity – some cases are easier to reverse than others.
Next to the door for Depression C is another set of double doors. Jane Well-Being half pushes open one of the doors. You can hear a hum, and you glimpse some deep-freezers, and some other bits of machinery in the dim light. There’s a flickering fluorescent light. At the far end, behind a trolley, is another door.
Jane tells you that is the door for Suicide. She says there’s a shortcut to Suicide from Depression C.
Jane turns and leads you through the Prep Room and back into the waiting area.
Your breathing returns to normal.