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A moment that changed me: I cured my 3am terrors with the help of a therapist – and a moose

ICYMI: After cancer, my health anxieties kept me awake at night. But when a marauding moose put paid to our well, our only source of water, I felt my mindset shift

It was clear the moose was to blame for the lack of water. Halfway down the ravine, far from the house in southern Alberta, Canada, tracks circled our well. The moose had punched straight through the plywood cover, exposing the pump and pipe to freezing temperatures. For 20 years, my husband and I had been saying we should replace the flimsy wooden lid with a metal one, but it was never a priority. That is, until last winter, when we lost our only source of water.

Regaling my therapist with stories of the moose was an easy way to start our session. She laughed along when I told her about hauling jugs of water from our neighbour’s place, about my dirty hair and how there was just enough water to wash the critical bits. But when she paused and then clicked her tongue, I knew the fun was over. “How do you feel about having a guided conversation with your fear?” she asked. She thought that a free-flowing chat, a one-on-one with my imagination, might help me with my sleep problem. Continue reading…

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