writing

elle has a healthy disdain for my spiritual gangster boyfriend

I didn’t think I would ever feel the same way. And yet, here I was. 17 months later, sitting in the bathtub with a plugged-in shaver in my hand. And psst, I waxed yesterday.

How did I get here and how do I make it back out? I guess I could start by putting down the Hitachi. Yeah, that would probably help. Rise, step out on to the bath mat, towel off and then slink into my jeans, one leg after another.

I’ve gone through a million different scenarios in my head. Wrists? Too emo, too messy. Pills? Ok, I’m not a spoiled brat with an infinity pool in Stouffville. Oven? Nobody does that anymore. Plus, ovens are too smart these days.

Elle stuck her head through her door into the bathroom. She took one look at me and said:

Because electrocution is so much better, right? Haul ass and get out, I haven’t showered yet. Your theatrics can wait for after my hair’s clean.

I grinned at my sister and slid the still plugged in shaver across the tiled floor. It stopped a meter from her feet. She rolled her eyes.

What do you think Otis would do if he found out his new toy had become your causa mortis?

He’s neurotic enough as it is. No need to add guilt to the equation.

I sighed. Elle has a healthy disdain for my spiritual gangster boyfriend. She refers to him as King Cymbeline and me Ophelia, no matter how many times I gently remind her that both characters are from different plays and that O dies. She either never remembers, or doesn’t care.

Look, I get that you’re not happy. Trust me, I’ve been there. Been there, done that. It gets better–

We both sniggered. It doesn’t get better; life still kicks you in the teeth, you just get better dental care ‘cos kindergarten friend Daniel can hook you up.

She sat on the counter; I slipped on a t-shirt. We compared our reflections. One time in the sixth grade, I looked at her and in a moment of cognitive confusion, I thought I was looking in a mirror. It was only when I raised my arm to my own head in a movement to fix my mussed-up hair that I realized my hair was fine. Hers was not.

Again, back to square one.

———————————————————————————————————

I wrote this short little verbal snapshot because mental health is such a hard topic to tackle, yet so important. You never know what demons the person next to you in class/at work/on the bus might be fighting. So if you feel locked in an internal tango with the parts of yourself you hate the most, I hope you find a new dance partner. In the meantime, I’ll always be here to talk listen.

— Xx C

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