I’m part of a friend group in which all the women have anxiety.
There’s five of us in our little group, and whenever we hang out, we somehow end up talking only about anxiety.
What’s worse is that they make me feel bad for being in perfect mental health.
After high tea one afternoon, Carol and Marge ganged up on me and told me that it was weird, even borderline offensive, that I wasn’t suffering from anxiety.
What the fuck?!
That night, I was online shopping for shoes that would better support my low arches, when all of a sudden, a pop up hit my screen.
“Service Dogs to INDUCE anxiety. Fit in with your friends. Click here!”
I’ve always been a sucker for clickbait (go figure) so I followed the link to a page with numerous pictures of dogs, all certified to fuck up your shit.
All the standard service breeds were listed, but something about them seemed…off. Memories of taking ecstasy and going to a Salvador Dali exhibition flooded back. But, I wasn’t deterred.
I scrolled for a few minutes before I found the most majestic, straight up terrifying bastard. His picture made me squirm in my seat.
The description read:
“Hi, my name is Beelzbub, the German Shepherd with a little something extra. You can call me BZ for short. Don’t overuse my nickname, though. I’ve been known to take a human hand right off the wrist. Let me in your home so that you may taste fear on your mortal tongue. I also love tug-of-war.”
Without hesitation, I called the number under BZ’s name.
The first week with BZ in my home was relatively uneventful. There was a time or two when he snuck up behind me and I jumped, but I still hadn’t experienced full-fledged anxiety.
That changed quickly.
In the weeks that followed, BZ stepped up his game. I would call him over to the couch, but instead he would sit in a dark corner and stare at me, his eyes glowing like a haunted lamp. I was feeling…in a word…uncomfortable.
I took BZ to a dog park for exercise, but all he wanted to do was stand motionless and stare at a tree. Freaky. I was definitely starting to feel anxious.
One night, I woke up in a cold sweat to find BZ standing on his hind legs at the foot of my bed. My heart started racing and I immediately began thinking about my parents’ divorce.
As if the standing wasn’t weird enough, BZ spoke to me using the Queen’s English.
“Victoria, the devil is inside your walls. I hacked into your MacBook, reactivated your MySpace and started conversations with three of your exes. They all want to grab coffee and reopen old wounds. Also, your oven has been on for 9 hours. Welcome to hell.”
I had certainly gotten my money’s worth. Not only had BZ turned me into an anxious fucking mess, but I had to be medicated.
The following month, I met up with my friends for lunch. When they brought up their anxiety, I was finally able to join in. I’ve been happy and normal ever since, and it’s all thanks to BZ.