Likely, this post will stand alone; perhaps others may follow. Time will tell.

Perhaps you are familiar with the expression ‘the elephant in the room’. It is often used in relation to the family and friends of drug addicts, abusers and others who have a problem both inescapable and seemingly too large to confront. It refers to the efforts people make to ignore that giant, glaring problem that no-one wants to have to examine …  the excuses, the lies, the quiet little chats about ‘complicated’ and ‘sensitive’ and ‘you must understand, (x) doesn’t mean to be like that’.

Whenever a certain friend (light of my life, centre of my world … destroyer of my self) comes to visit, I see a herd of elephants squeezing through the door behind her. Unfortunately, when she leaves, they remain behind.

They are crowding me out of what little personal space I have left, these damn elephants in the room. They are eating me out of emotional house and home, keeping me awake nights with their trumpeting and stomping. 

I try to reason with them, but of course, that is worse than foolish; akin, in a sense, to trying to stop a speeding bus by standing in front of it and asking it to stop. I try to shut them out, but I am just me, and they are so many, and so large. And of course, I try to run away … but those giant beasts are deceptively fast on their feet. Such a mess they make with their leavings … small mountains of broken dreams, betrayed hopes, empty promises; how can I possibly clean this up?

I think of all the years I spent tending the herd along with the rest, making excuses with the rest, even as I did my level best to pretend these damnable creatures did not exist. I think of all the times I got trampled, and chose to blame myself … anything to avoid seeing the obvious, knowing that if I looked, I would never be able to look away again … and the person to whom these shadowy pachyderms rightly belong will never be able to accept ownership of even the smallest of them. 

Like all who have been through the experience of trying to manage such a menagerie, the greatest sting is that false promise of hope: ‘I will change’. 

Knowing it to be impossible, believing it anyway. Wanting with all my heart for this little one to break free of her shackles, seeing that it can never happen.

There is a herd of elephants in the room, trampling my heart, crushing my soul … and I don’t know what to do.


~ by thedyingmoments on October 9, 2012.

One Response to “Elephants”

  1. Good expression of reality. I’m so happy to see this writing thing happening. xo

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