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Mysteries of the Sea-shell
based on a guided imagery exercise

I gasped in shocked when the beach and the rock pool disappeared and I felt like I was falling. Suddenly, I found myself in a monstrous cavern. There was nothing in there but another little shell and a lot of tiny bugs crawling and flying around. The cavern wasnít dark; light seemed to filter in through the strangely coloured walls. I walked over to the nearest wall to me; there were many shallow pools of water that I had to walk through in order to reach the wall. I placed my hand on the wall and had to stop myself from screaming. The wall felt exactly like a shell, the same shell that I was holding just a few minutes before. I was inside the shell.

Somehow, I had shrunk to a very miniature size and ended up inside the shell. I looked all around, hoping to find the way out, but there was none. The shell was huge and cone shaped with no entrance or exit. I walked around, thumping on the walls, trying to find a spot where I might be able to break through. I found nothing, I was trapped. I looked up at the roof that was high above me. There was a hole in it, but it was way out of reach. I sat down to think and my eyes fell upon the small shell in the centre of the room. I walked over to it and picked it up. It looked like an ordinary shell to me, much different than the one that I was in. It had a big black hole in it, obviously where crabs and things could get in and out.

Suddenly, a long black crabs claw darted out of the hole and snapped closed on my hand. The pain was excruciating. I saw blood pour out just above my wrist. I let go of the shell, but it dangled from my hand because the claw was still holding tight. Finally, the claw let go and the shell clattered to the floor. I grabbed my hand and cried out in pain. It seemed that gallons of blood was gushing out, the floor and my clothes were stained red. I looked down at the shell on the ground and saw that an evil looking black crab was beginning to emerge from the blackness. In a blind rage, I lifted my foot and prepared to crush it but something stopped me. A voice seemed to call my name. I looked around but nobody was there. Then I heard it again, from the direction of the crab. The crab was speaking to me.

ď Donít be afraid,Ē it said, ď It is my fault that you are in here. I called you to me because you are not taking your life seriously. All you do is joke around and make fun of people. You canít waste your life, because you never know when it will be over. You could find yourself trapped in here like me at any moment and youíll be regretting your life. I will send you home now; I hope you have learnt your lesson. Life is too short to waste, it is okay to have fun, but remember, you canít have fun all the time. Thatís the way life is. Good bye!Ē

I looked down at the black little crab; he didnít look so evil any more. Suddenly I was flying upwards towards the hole in the ceiling, there was a blinding flash of light and I was back on the beach, holding the shell. I placed it back in the rock pool and walked back over the sand dunes, feeling the soft sand between my toes.