Evil Cricket On My Shoulder

Who has seen or remembers the Disney classic Pinocchio? The story of a wooden puppet who wants to be a real boy. Yes the animation is old school but when you consider it’s a 1940’s production it’s no surprise the quality isn’t as crisp as today’s animations. But I’m not going to discuss the skill used in creating the movie or wanting to be a real boy in this crazy world, I’m going to talk about the concept of Jiminy Cricket, depression and self doubt.

Now Jiminy is Pinocchio’s conscience and does all he can to help him do the right things. Jiminy wants the best for Pinocchio. To help him reach his goal of being a real boy. My cricket however isn’t as caring. Let’s call him Jamany to make it easier to discuss since he jams up my thought processes. Jamany isn’t your typical devil or angel on your shoulder, one emploring you to do right while the other whispers what you should do for yourself or personal gain. No he doesn’t care about the consequences of my actions being good or bad. To him all my actions and thoughts are a waste of time, futile, pathetic, rubbish…you get the general idea. 

Jamany isn’t my conscience but my depression and anxiety given voice. When ever I think of how my actions will affect someone he’s there telling me I’m going to screw things all up so why bother. This can make things very difficult when it comes to day to day life. Some days I can stuff him into a canvas sack and toss him in a hole.  Other days I can put tape over his mouth to muffle his comments. Then there are the days when I just can’t get my hands on him. His constant chatter almost like a fog horn in my ear.  

Before you comment about me hearing voices let me clarify that this is all figurative. Yes I am mentally unwell but not at the white coat and padded cell level yet. Trying to explain things that are in your head can be very difficult when talking to people who have no idea.

What’s the point of all this? Why bother explaining things like this? It was actually while talking with my oldest son about his battles with depression that I saw how hard it can be to explain things to someone. You are taking an internal sense of self and attempting to explain it to others who can’t see the images or words in your head. Almost like explaining colour to someone who was blind since birth. 

We all have a Jamany, Jiminy, Angel, Devil and perhaps a myriad of others which make up our personalities. Some will be louder than others or we may not hear them at all. After all we are all unique in our own lives and how we face our insecurities makes for a daily battle that we can all have an impact in. 

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