Monday, August 09, 2004

The Doldrums

Imagine yourself aboard a sailboat. You've followed the trade winds across the Atlantic countless times bringing valuable cargo around the world. But this time, you're mired in the doldrums.

The trade winds typically propel ships along at about 15mph. They are consistent, steady and reliable. They are a sailor's best friend.

The doldrums, however, are rumors bantied about by older sailors. And now, you're stuck in them. The sea is dead calm and it's like your ship is sitting on a pane of glass. There's nothing to be done. The sailors slowly start panicking. Food is running low. There's no telling when the ship might start moving again.

That's the tricky thing about the doldrums. They move during the year. They follow a typical pattern, but nobody has figured that out yet. And so, you're crew is slowly going mad. The endless waiting is debilitating. They look to you to rescue them, but there's nothing you can do, except wait and pray.

Welcome to my current existence.

I am on this placid sea without stimulation, aching to emerge from the lack of speed and excitement. I eargerly await the trade winds of normality, or dear Lord, even the squalls of mania to save me from this current slump.

I'm as helpless as the ship's captain who whispers to Poseidon, pleading for mercy and for relief from the unexpected pause, the aggravating slow motion of his newfound existence.

The doldrums are painful. The captain can do nothing for his soldiers except give them meaningless tasks to keep their minds off of the slow and miserable death they may face, starving to death unless the capricious weather decides to push them back into the path of the trade winds.

Yep. This is where I am. Waiting.

There's not much I can do. A part of me knows just how pathetic it is to sweep the floor and call that an accomplishment for the day. And yet, I don't have much of a choice. I'm trapped in lethargy and any tiny wind I can create through the tiniest of achievements is something. I personally don't think that a congregation of these little tasks will ever create the gale necessary to shove me into action.

I suppose the only thing I can do is wait and try to appreciate the here and now. I'm sure there's some kind of ephemeral beauty in the calm. It merely eludes me like the fleeing of a phantasm, an imaginary echo of teardrops in an endless sea.