Ms. Zhou focuses on mental and psychological counseling for woman in rural areas. In this article, she writes about her mountain peregrination with a girl she is counseling, and an encounter with a poor shepherd.
When doing public service, one must serve with a loving heart.
I told this story before: there was this high school girl who had a lot of pressure from studying, as well as a high self-esteem and a bad relationship with her mother which led to her obsessive-compulsive disorder. One of her friends introduced her to a downtown psychiatrist treatment center, and within four months, spent about 30,000 RMB (~4,800 USD). By chance, the director of the women in the town recommended my counseling and she was able to find me. The first time when we met, she told me that she could not go to her school classes, and even at home she felt extremely unhappy, irritated, and anxious because of this situation.
So far we have only met 4 times, and after the second time we met, her parents called and happily said: "This time we are on the right path! Our whole family has hope now!"
Yesterday was the weekend and the girls asked if she could see me. I told her mother to let her take the bus to come to the hillside to find me. Now is that season where the grass green, flowers are blooming, and I believe that nature would be a much better place than my counseling office.
Since we will be going up the mountain, I was a little concerned about the safety issue. So I sent my husband to scout ahead of us and also take pictures for us as well. As we walked down the road, there were rows of pines,
fully bloomed apricots, and I talk to her about nature, life, and her future. We found a smooth place to sit down and I asked her take out the homework I gave to her titled “My Dream." I had her read it out loud in front of the mountain and the nature, along with a passionate voice, appropriate language. The way everything fit together and her description of her dream really touched me. It was as if I could see her dream become reality already! How is it that this girl needs to take medicine? She's fine the way she is!
We took a total of about 40 pictures, and on the way back down from the mountain, we came across an old shepherd. What surprised us was that while the sheep were on their own just peacefully eating the grass on the
hillside, the elder was just sitting down under the shade and reading a book. Of course I had to ask the shepherd some questions and I intended that the girl would listen!
The shepherd is not that old, he's 61 years of age and has only taken a few days of junior high school. At home there were a lot of men, he calls himself "foolish" and their family was poor. No one would really like to talk to him—not even his family.
He has been married for four years and has a three year old child. His wife is forty seven years old and was bought through a process of several people form Guang Xi. She was disabled and had no ID card—basically she had
nothing. Their family had to rely on the several sheep they owned in order to survive, and could only make about 10,000 RMB every year (~1,600 USD). Despite all of these hardships he has to go through, he loves to read. He enjoys knowing about the government’s things, and also is afraid he would forget all his Chinese is he didn't read. He says, "My books are all bought on the street and at home, there is a pile of them."
I told him that the next time I came up to the mountains I would give him books or newspapers.
After we walked down from the mountain, I asked the girl a few questions about life, the book, her future. The girl didn't say very much, but as we departed from each other, I asked the girl to write a piece about her feelings and thoughts about today, and she nodded her head saying, "Of course, I can write it right away!"
As for the psychotherapist, what role did she play in the end? Were there high counseling fees? Mysteries? Will there be a lot of technology involved?
How many people do not understand psychological treatment, and just how many people are actually treated or cured? As for the elderly shepherd, he doesn't even know his own language, behavior, or attitude toward life, and I
hope he can find us for counseling as well.
We encountered an elderly shepherd reading books on the way down from the mountain.
His family's goat.
Original Article written by Ms. Zhou,translated by ShiShi Ma, edited by US intern Kevin Mo.
TFISH FUND BLOG
We update news and reports directly from the field written by our NGO partners daily.
PHOTOS & VIDEOS
IN THE NEWS