I’m stuck! Although writers are cautioned not to use idioms, I can’t think of an easier way to explain the extreme personal stress I’ve been under for many weeks. Yup, I’m stuck. I’m certain all of us have ‘been there, done that’ from time to time. Unfortunately, if I use the many nouns, verbs and adjectives available to describe my current events, our travelers will be ‘blogged down.’ So, I asked Electra to give me her thoughts. Here’s what she had to say …
Electra: “You have no choice! We MUST get off this sick island ‘ASAP!’ You MUST use idioms!”
Me: “OK but it’s a ‘tough pill to swallow.’ I’ll do my best to select only a few of the worn-out phrases.”
Hmmm! Let me think about it. There are so many … (thinking) …
OK, I’ve narrowed it down to the following:
‘caught between a rock and a hard place’
‘looking for a needle in a haystack’
‘going on a wild goose chase’
‘bent out of shape!’
‘experiencing the last straw’
Most certainly neither Electra nor I intended staying on the sickly floating Isle for any length of time. We really wanted a ‘quick get away.’ However, as circumstances developed, we found ourselves unable to leave the island. Indeed, we were on forbidden ground in ‘no-man’s land,’ which according to the Thesaurus also means ‘NO-Fly Zone!’ Yup, the phrase ‘no-fly zone’ extends beyond military to other instances. While I was having a ‘moving experience’ and stuck on the Isle of Ills with its metaphoric ‘No-Fly-Zone,’ the controversy over a real ‘No-Fly Zone’ added considerably to my stress, along with everyone else! EVERYONE
Let’s just say, I was having both a physical and emotional ‘moving experience’ on several levels. The physical move was from a 2100 foot townhome where I had lived for the past 20 years to a 875 foot apartment within a retirement community. Yet, despite the luxuries provided by this independent retirement village, where every need is met, I experienced high anxiety brought on by several approach/avoidance conflicts. Sort of like being between ‘the devil and the deep blue sea’ or ‘damned if I do and damned if I don’t.’
Damned if I do because ‘downsizing’ or, in my case ‘right sizing’ is, ‘on the one hand,’ chaotic. But, ‘on the other hand, ‘I’m reducing my carbon footprint! What better way to accomplish this than being ‘in the right place at the right time,’ enabling me to ‘grab the brass ring.’ However, grabbing the brass ring also means leaving behind the comfort of one home to find comfort in another. OK, what about the other half of the expression? The, ‘damed if I don’t’ part? Being 77 (but going on 45) with family far away … well, ummm, ‘put yourself in my shoes.’
My move took place during an ongoing complicated war threatening to involve EVERYONE, and I mean EVERYONE! Thus a new ingredient was added to my emotional mix – FEAR. The war, brought to me in technicolor on my new smart TV, presented an unfathomable dichotomy to which I reacted with – GUILT.
And my body backfired accordingly. I suddenly lost 65% of my hearing in the left ear which was remedied by a painful shot in my eardrum followed by a course of prednisone for 20 days. The prednisone caused hyperactivity. I became sleep deprived, unsteady and disoriented. The many boxes in the house and garage created a maze through which I could not safely navigate. I suffered multiple falls. Not even Electra was there for me. I was alone … except for my Apple watch which after falling didn’t even ask, “Are you OK? Should I call your emergency contacts?”
GUILT multiplied exponentially as I tried to relax (yeah right) watching the evening news. The dichotomy of my sorting through and selecting which of the cherished belongings to take with me from one safe home to another was in stark contrast to the horrors of those fleeing their homes with nothing but their lives, the clothes on their backs while grasping the hand of an elderly relative or child hugging a selected stuffed animal.
GUILT multiplied exponentially as I tried to relax (yeah right) watching the evening news. The dichotomy of my emptying my refrigerators, freezers and cupboards filled with food knowing that all my meals would be provided for was in stark contrast to the horrors of hunger, malnutrition and pain of those suffering on the TV screen.
GUILT multiplied exponentially as I tried to relax (yeah right) watching the evening news. The dichotomy of my choosing a ‘time out’ with BF of 14 years was in stark contrast to the separation between married and unmarried couples, both young and old being forced apart with tearful hugs and goodbyes.
Electra pulled me out of my doldrums urging me to take to the skies despite the messed up world below. So before I too became hardened to the ‘point of no return’ I selected a destination.
Stay tuned to learn more …
Sorry to hear about your elevated stress levels due to your hearing loss and moving. Where is your destination?
I have moved to an independent apartment at the Masonic Village in Sewickley! My Cherry Hill town home was just too big and I needed/wanted to reduce my carbon footprint. What better way than to move to an CCRC that is more like a cruise ship or college campus. It’s wonderful and I live it here! Perfect for me at this point in my life!
You know my wishes are only good ones and my hopes are to see smiles ….. through … yes … these very difficult times that we have to navigate both at home and abroad
Thank you Barb. You always respond to my blog posts and I promise they will not always be so grim! Comic relief to be included during my “flights of fancy” with Electra and travelers!
Moving is stressful and letting go of beautiful things that remind uS of past experiences is tough. But I envy your determination and strength to “ get it done “. Sounds like a great place to be with so much going on. Hopefully, the stress melts away and you can really enjoy your new abode!
My idiom to you…
Take one day at a time.
Your making it through. Moving is a huge stress inducer.
Ukraine is such a horrible situation and we all feel so helpless.
All we can do is support any valid organization that is sending necessary supplies and pray.
So appreciate your idiom and am finally able to take it “one day at a time!”
“Outside of a dog, a book is a man’s best friend. Inside of a dog, it’s too dark to read.” – Groucho Marx
Idioms are the playground of pedestrians. Only make language choices which predate Canterbury Tales and you’ll never be targeted by the Prose PC Police.