I own an elephant since I was in highschool. It is big and disturbing. Sometimes I walk it in school, inside the classroom, inside the library, with my friends, with my family, with strangers but mostly I don’t. I always have to remind myself how big and disturbing it is.
I received the elephant on a car accident. It was raining and so I hardly saw the road. Before I knew it, I was running towards a car. I was badly injured. My left leg was almost ripped into half, all my fingers was gnarled, my broken ribcage implied I could no longer swim, my throat screamed its last scream. And the elephant, as a gift from the offender, would remind me of that dreadful accident. My parents were the least thankful.
Since the accident, my life changed dramatically. When somebody saw the elephant, they too would be reminded of that accident and gave me a pity look together with a reassuring smile. My family exempted me from any exhausting chores. Gone are the days of lifting the garbage bin or carrying the pale of water. The school gave me a special treatment. Its either I will be the first person to get the freshly cooked lunch or the last person to pass a test paper. One would think that was a blessing in disguise. The one, however, is not the injured. For the injured, the blessing can’t still compensate for the pain.
Today, I am walking my elephant. It would be odd in particular days but today is not a particular one. I will be having a presentation of my thesis for the next hour. I can’t talk without the elephant, I became dependent on it. It is worsed than a trauma, this phenemenon is untreatable. Unless, of course, if the heavens go crazy, then I’ll utter my dying wish.
When I enter the classroom, all is in place. My teacher, my technical devices and my classmates. I walk towards the center of the classroom as soon as my name is called. I flip through my note cards and begin my presentation. It is after fifteen minutes when I heard one of my classmates rustling over the back of the classroom and mimicking my voice. I am quite grateful for it. Usually, it takes them only three minutes before they start mocking me. At least now, I made my premise. My teacher didn’t flinch. As usual, he is showing his professionalism, just doing nothing. When my presentation is finish and after some phony bows, I immediately walk out from the classroom. I can’t bear the view anymore.
The scenery always happens when I’m with my elephant. One would have thought that I had gotten over it and people would have been tired teasing me. However, the one hasn’t realized how piercing every smirks and laughs I received. This kind of pain didn’t diminish over time.
There is, however, another reason why I am with my elephant. My book club is having a discussion about “The Lovely Bones” by Alice Sebold and I am tasked to be a discussion leader. I review again my note cards and begin the discussion. I start with the objective questions working up to the intimate ones. They all listen intently to my words, as if missing one word would deprive them of a valuable information. All participated in the discussion, which I am happy for. When the discussion is over, almost all of the members pat my back and praise for the good work and worthwhile session. I smile and return back the favor.
My classmates loath my elephant but my book club appreciates it. That explains the old adage of “you can’t please everybody”. I’m just glad that there is somebody who appreciates elephants, my elephant.