We stand tall, erect and proud. We can cope. We are capable. We are in control. We don’t need help, thank you.

At least, that’s the image we try to portray. That’s the image we are taught to portray, especially in the Western world. The stiff upper lip that refuses to cry, publicly; or even privately, for that matter. After all, we are in control. What is there to cry about? We don’t need help, thank you.

Pain sneaks up on us, unexpectely. Pain hides in the shadows of our existence, lurking, waiting for the right opportunity to rear its ugly head; waiting until the perfect moment to cause us embarrassment.

The truth is that we have to acknowledge our pain. We have to confront it. We have to savour the challenge of accepting, and beating our pain into submission. And we can only do that by admitting that it is there, that we are in pain, that we are suffering; that we need help.

For only then can we be truly free. Only then can we stand tall, erect, and proud; not because we are pain-free; not because we have conquered pain; but because we are not afraid to show our vulnerabilities.