Sometimes, I feel like I’m stuck, unable to move forward … unwilling to move backward … and trying my best to shimmy-shimmy-shimmy my way sideways, just enough to get a little bit of breathing room in my life. I’ve never been stuck in quicksand, but this is what I imagine it would be like. Well, minus the whole “you’re going to die momentarily” aspect of the ordeal. Sometimes, I almost wish I would die momentarily. Just so the cycle of torment and self recrimination would end.

Okay … so, no, I don’t really want to die. Except, well, sometimes, yes, it does feel like this could be a good idea. Figuratively, anyhow. And then I tell myself I’m being overly dramatic. I roll my eyes at my reflection in the bathroom mirror while reminding myself that no one gives a shit about me or my problems. And why should they? And then I go along my merry way. Except … that feeling is still there. That feeling of slogging forward — painfully, slowly, one foot in front of the other. Not because I want to or even because I think it’s a particularly good idea. But because it’s what I’m supposed to do. It’s what’s expected.

deserted road in fall

I suppose I’ve always had an over-developed sense of “duty”. I was one of those kids who did homework as soon as I arrived home — and started with my most-hated subject first. I was a person who stuck it out through three soul-sucking years of graduate school, obtaining a degree that tossed me into one miserable job after another. If it had been up to me, I would have walked away. Right up to the very moment I walked across the stage and received that damn diploma, I would have walked. Run, more like it. And yet, I stayed. Because it was expected. Because it meant so much to other people. I’m the person who does all the shit work in my house. Not because I like it. Or even because anyone ever says thank you. But because it has to be done.

Writing used to be my escape. When I needed a break from the expectations and the obligations and the weight of all the hopes and dreams of the people around me, I would pretend to be someone else. I could be free and do anything I wanted — whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted. It was liberating and terrifying and beautiful and awful and just … everything. All at once.

But now, even writing has become quicksand. There isn’t any freedom in it. There is only the fight to carve out time from the merry-go-round of errands and wants and needs and requirements and just … crap … that is a busy life in a large metropolitan area in the US. And there is the drudgery of slogging ahead, trying to make progress, trying to prove something to myself and to everyone around me. I am worth this. I can do this. I have a voice. I can use it. Except, apparently, I can’t.


8 thoughts on “Quicksand

    • Hi! Thanks for stopping by to read, and for the kind comment. I appreciate both very much. I’m sorry you are going through similar feelings. It’s a frustrating and tough spot in which to be, but, hopefully, there are brighter moods and better days ahead for both of us.

    • Thanks, ES! Life has been crazy-busy, with my husband running in one direction and my daughter in the other. I’ve been on chauffeur duty — LOL. I’ve missed having time to come onto WordPress and blog and read. I hope life is going well for you.

  1. I never thought about writing being an escape, but I love that. I am also trying to prove something and although I may never succeed at that I can succeed at escape. An escape in November is just what I need. Thanks for your honesty.

    • Hi! You’re welcome. And thank you for stopping by and for your lovely comment, too. I hope that you are able to continue to escape into your writing, all the way up until you prove just exactly what you want to prove. Because you can do it! 🙂

  2. I like your honesty and pure truth to your self, Their are no magic instructions or remedies for any relief in what brings the blackness/quicksand ,, Believe me i would share it if there were. I do think that it sounds like you have proven to be fighting the good fight , which really is not a good fight ,but yet a fight to stay out of Quicksand. My comment is to long sorry ..I can relate.

    • Hi! Thanks for stopping by my blog, and thank you for your lovely comment! (Which was definitely not too long. ^.~) Writing can be such a huge struggle, especially when so many other things demand attention. I think you are right: it is a good fight. But it is not an easy one. Wishing you much luck in your own struggles, whatever they may be.

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