Flying the Nest

Flying the nest

Words & art by Susan Robinson

A couple of years ago, I had a brilliant project worker who provided one-to-one support and ran an art group. It was the best support I’ve ever received and we developed a strong therapeutic relationship. I was very upset when our time together finished, and I wasn’t sure how I would cope.  

As I was walking home from our final meeting, I had an image of myself as a bird leaving the nest of support. My worker had done what she could to prepare me, but it was up to me whether I flew or fell.

I channelled a lot of my feelings into artwork, partly as a distraction technique, and partly to process my emotions. This picture and this poem remind me that I was able to fly when I doubted I could. Moving on can be scary, but sometimes you don’t know what you are capable of, until you take that leap into the unknown.

A nest of support
Built slowly, twig by twig
Until eventually it becomes a safe place
Warm and comforting
Protecting you from the outside world
From the fierce winds and torrential rain
From the unknown and the uncertainties

A mother hen figure
Who takes you under her wing
Gently she preens your feathers
Prepares you

And then she is gone
You are all alone
Time to leave the nest
Up to you now
Whether you fall or fly
No safety net
No one to catch you
You need to believe in yourself
To trust your wings
Take a deep breath 
And jump into the unknown
Feel the fear and do it anyway
Jump. Soar. Glide. Fly.

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