I'd give a lot to achieve fun," Elphaba said. "The best I usually hope for is stirring."
I knew you had been following me for a while. Watching me for a while, wanting to consume me. Actually, I think I knew you were there years ago. Yes, it's been a long time. Sometimes I thought about you, but when I was out and about I would forget about you. You were never really important; you truly are insignificant. However, you crossed my mind quite often still as a lot of useless things do. Most of the time it was when I was alone. I would look into the mirror, deep into my own eyes and vanity, and then there you would appear. There. Like you had been for so long. And then I pretended not to see you. I ignored you like I had for so long.
But I couldn't ignore you forever. I saw you when I looked in the mirror. I felt you so near me while I got ready for the day, for work, for a date, for just a night to myself. I'd spend so much time, waste so much time trying to hide you so no one else would see you like I could. You'd sneer at me when I pulled my hair up into a ponytail and you'd laugh at me when I let my hair down. Sometimes someone brought you up in a conversation, sometimes only in passing. A child might point at you. An adult might tell me he was concerned about you like my parents had done when I was fifteen. A friend might pretend not to see you in order to assure me it was fine. A young handsome man might sincerely shoo you jealously away for a while. Nothing could make me forget you like a nice young man...If he was the right one, that is.
But today I had had enough. Enough of you. I sat in a big sanitized chair and confronted you head on. I asked questions and dug deep into the root of the problem. I sought professional help. I answered questions I had never let myself be asked. I stopped denying your existence. I acknowledged you. And so did they with their latex gloves, miniature flashlights, and strange rulers.
I looked away when they poked me with needles. I looked back when I felt the needle leave my arm. I watched her carry tubes of deep, red life liquid out the door. We all acknowledged you then as something I never wanted to see you as: a true threat. When I started to feel sorry for myself, for you, for it all, the nurse told me he had been a paramedic firefighter. He was hurt in a fire and could no longer continue that career path. Well. I stopped feeling bad for myself. You couldn't keep me from any career path. You were, in fact, not a true threat at all.
When I drove home, I started to breathe fast. I didn't like that you were in the car with me when I started sobbing. I didn't like the smugness about you when I read more and more about you when I got home. And when I cried and let myself feel sorry for myself once again even though the paramedic firefighter had a sadder story than I, I felt cold and ashamed. I didn't like the way you rolled your eyes when I read about the side effects to the little red pills I was given to stop you in your tracks. There was a lot I would sacrifice in order to get rid of you, but there were also lines I couldn't cross. And you knew that.
Like most terrible things, large and small, that we must overcome in our lives, it would take courage more than anything to regain control and become unafraid once again.
Laugh all you want; laugh while you can. But believe it when I say I have what it takes to make you disappear.