6. Push the Button

Staring at my beaten-up face in a mirror, I thought about pushing the button in my head.

I hadn’t really thought much about the ‘imaginary’ button in my head since childhood. But now, aged 22, I could feel it pulsing inside my head.

The last lines of the poem Disabled, by the World War I poet Wilfred Owen, surfaced in my thoughts.

Now, he will spend a few sick years in institutes,
And do what things the rules consider wise,
And take whatever pity they may dole.
Tonight he noticed how the women’s eyes
Passed from him to the strong men that were whole.
How cold and late it is! Why don’t they come
And put him into bed? Why don’t they come?

Wilfred Owen

I pressed my head against the glass of the mirror and I pushed the button inside my head.

I felt a click.

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