“So where is the book going?” Liv asked. I was lying in my bed, barely able to move, and she’s asking about the damn book.
“Nowhere. The book is going nowhere. It’s a joke. What the hell was I thinking? I can’t write a damn book!” I said, my voice cracking.
“Did I wake you up?”
“Yeah, but I have to get up anyway.” I said, with no actual plans of getting up.
“It’s 11:30 Eddie, why are you still in bed?” Liv asked, half laughing at me.
“It’s called depression Liv. It doesn’t allow me to get out of bed. It doesn’t allow me to do anything. I’m going to go, I need to get something to eat.” I said, flatly.
“Are you okay?”
“No. I gotta go. I’ll call you soon.” I hung up my cell phone, feeling a little guilty about being so shitty to Liv, and rolled over to fall back asleep.
Within ten seconds my phone rang. Knowing it was her, I didn’t answer it. I didn’t have the energy to talk anymore. I didn’t have the energy to do anything other than slowly move into various positions in my bed.
Another minute went by and my phone beeped, alerting me to a voice mail from a no doubt pissed off Olivia. I didn’t even bother to listen.
I had spent the last two weeks pretending to write in my room, but not actually able to type a single letter, let alone word or sentence. I felt so overwhelmed with the task that I had given myself that I had basically become paralyzed with fear.
Here I was with this unbelievably amazing opportunity in front of me and I was terrified of it. I couldn’t admit it to anyone else though. I couldn’t stand the look of disappointment staring back at me from the mirror, there was no way I could stomach it from someone I loved. So I sat in my room either messing around on the Internet, or reading, or staring out the window and wondering how many other people out there were fucking up their dreams.
When you spend your entire life thinking about this one goal, that if only you had the time, you would achieve it. And then someone gives you the time, and you are completely unable to achieve it because you don’t even know where to begin.
That’s my problem. I have no idea where to begin, and I don’t even know if I have the courage to tell the story I want to tell. I don’t want people to think differently of me because I finally reveal who I am. Even if it’s only a fraction of who I am. What if people hate it? What if they all think I’m insane? What if my dad is angry at me? What if my family is angry that I have spilled our secrets?
But then I keep thinking about how it’s the only story I know to tell. I need to get it up, to get it out. It’s like when you feel like you need to throw up, but you don’t want to actually throw up, but then you wrestle with the idea of knowing that you will feel better once you throw up. It’s exactly like that. Knowing that I want to get this all out, to get it up and out and then be able to move on from it is a great idea in and of its self. However, the actual writing of it is like the physical act of vomiting. It burns and aches as you heave up whatever has been churning in your stomach. It’s painful and you hate doing it, regardless of the fact that you know it’s a means to the very end that you seek. Once you throw up you feel better, and then you can go about your life feeling better.
So here I am with my freaking head in the toilet swallowing hard even though my teeth are sweating and I know I will feel better once I just do the damn thing. Yes it will be disgusting. Yes my throat might burn and my teeth will feel as if I’ve burned all the enamel off of them. But then maybe my insides won’t ache so much anymore. Go on kid, yack it up, brush your damn teeth and and then maybe we can get on with this thing everyone else keeps calling life.
I rolled over, picked up my cell phone, and dialed my voicemail to listen to Livs message. Surprisingly she just sounded worried about me, which made me feel even worse for hanging up on her. I scrolled through the list of saved numbers in my phone (which was depressingly short) and dialed hers once I came upon it.
“I’m sorry I suck,” I said as soon as she said hello.
– Copyrighted 2008 from Shoo Elephant Shoo