Sharing something a little different today:
It shouldn’t really come as a surprise to anyone who knows me, but there is an elephant in the room. An enormous, fuck-off elephant, and nobody is talking about it. Seriously?! It’s like Pachyderm Fight Club. First rule of Pachyderm Fight Club? Well, you know.
This particular elephant is my friend and her name is Depression, which if you ask me is a supremely shitty name. I mean, her parents must have hated her to call her that – and I say this in a world of babies named Pilot Inspektor, Moon Unit and Moxie CrimeFighter… but I digress. To save her some embarrassment, let’s call her Dee for short.
As I was saying, poor, gigantic Dee is sitting the corner, tusks to the wall, with a knot in her trunk so that she doesn’t make a sound, trying her darnedest to not be spotted (which is no mean feat for the largest land animal on the frickin’ planet).
In the meantime, my family, my friends, my colleagues are all sat squashed together like sardines in the opposite corner balancing cups of tea on any available body part and carrying on the inanest conservations I’ve ever heard, which broach any and every subject except the bleeding obvious one. All the while their nostrils are flared, and their eyes are watering from the stench of the enormous turd Dee has inevitably taken right on my lap.
But even though I feel utterly disgusted by the festering faeces that have landed on me, I just do what I always do; decant bottle after bottle of Febreze all over myself, while sporting tree-shaped air fresheners as earrings and cinnamon sticks as hair accessories, slap on the most convincingly carefree smile I can muster, and pretend right along with the rest of them. Why? Because second rule of Pachyderm Fight Club, that’s why.
But then I feel guilty, see, because Dee is my oldest friend, and you simply don’t ignore your friends.
I first met Dee, in all her wrinkled grey glory, not long after my eleventh birthday. She showed me that banging my head against walls can temporarily take away all the hurt inside. And later she showed me that making myself bleed was even better than banging my head. Such a good friend! She was there for every break up, every death, every shitty life experience and she never once failed to show up.
So you see Dee isn’t bad. She’s just a little lonely. Sure she has thick skin (ha!), but she doesn’t like being ignored. Or glossed over. Or belittled. So, every now and then she unknots her trunk and gives out the almightiest trumpet call and it shudders through me like an earthquake, leaving me broken in its wake.
Then everyone sees her.
Then everyone pays attention to poor, sweet, disregarded Dee.
But now, instead of helping me back to my feet (as one might reasonably expect one’s loved ones to do when one falls on one’s arse) they run away. They flee from the room and leave me inside, all alone, save for my one true friend. Dee. The only one who never leaves my side.
If I’m lucky, some of my braver loved ones will call some cliched words of encouragement through the wall and hover awkwardly just outside the door until they’re sure I’ve got Dee safely back in her corner, trunk tightly knotted once more. Then (and only then), dare they peek their wary heads around the door jamb, and when they’re absolutely sure that I’ve picked myself back up, and put myself back together, they will slowly tiptoe back in and re-huddle with fresh cups of tea and more frivolous, pachyderm-free, conversation. Like nothing. even. fucking. happened.
Dee is friend.
Dee is my oldest friend.
Dee is my only friend.
But alas, I’ve already said too much.
Pachyderm Fight Club, don’t you know?