The Elephant In The Room
5 April 2017
I am the elephant in the room.
Not because you don't love me. Because you love me so much, you don't want it to be real. And maybe if we ignore it, if we don't mention it, if we sweep it under the rug, it doesn't exist.
Maybe if we act normal, things will be normal, and we won't have to deal with this.
But I need to talk about it, because things aren't normal. Because things have changed. I've changed. I'm still changing. And adapting. And trying to cope in an environment where I'm the only person that has to live with something being wrong. I'm outside of the bubble you've created.
You make that face. That "This makes me uncomfortable" face. The face that makes me feel bad, for making you feel bad. The face that says you don't want to be reminded, you don't want to be brought back to reality.
You tell me I'm over thinking things. You've experienced similar problems! And you know, I haven't been sleeping well, and lack of sleep can cause all sorts of problems. You know how I stress, and maybe magnify a small problem into a bigger one, and if I really think about it, maybe a lot of this is just in my head. And did I hear about your friend of a friend who has cancer?
Yes that's much worse. How selfish of me. I shouldn't have said anything. Life isn't all about me and my problems after all. There's people who have it a lot worse than I do...
But I still need to talk about it.
I know you don't know how to deal with this. Because I don't know how to deal with this. But I do know, that I don't want to deal with this alone.
You say you'll always be there for me and you're here to support me, and I know you try. But you don't want to be there. Not in your heart. Because it's too hard.
It is hard. It is.
What's happening is real. Is it all in my head? No. Only some of it is in my head. The rest of it is in my spine. I have the scans to prove it.
Yes I can get help. Professional help. Yes I can educate myself. I can join groups. I'm doing those things. But... I can't force everyone else to get help. I can't force everyone to educate themselves. Being the only informed person in a room full of people who want to help me but don't actually want to hear the reality of what's going on, doesn't help me.
Do you want to help me? Of course you do. You love me.
Then we need to help each other.
Don't disregard me. Don't diagnose me. Don't analyse me.
Photos by Kalegin Michail & Jennifer Latuperisa Andresen; courtesy of unsplash.com