I had an interesting revelation today. I try to write every day and, like with so many other things, it is often a struggle to stay on track. I always seem to wait until the last minute to get things done, if they get done at all. I’ve always wondered why I can’t stay focused the way so many others seem to do. My partner is a dynamo. He stays busy all day accomplishing amazing things. But I can’t seem to manage it. I was catching up on overdue things today and was reminded of a recurring nightmare I used to have as a kid. It would come once or twice a week for years and was terrifying. In the dream, I’d been cursed by a woman. She said that everywhere I stepped the ground would turn to quicksand. As I ran away trying to go home, everyone threw rocks at me and screamed to get away because of the quicksand. When I finally reached my home, the house was sinking in a pool of quicksand. I didn’t recognize the man and small child on the roof who were yelling at me to go away. That’s when I woke up.
Many years later, when I was living in Santa Cruz with Paul Cavanaugh and our baby daughter, I had that dream again. This time I recognized the man and child and woke Paul up to tell him we had to make plans to move. I was sure it was a warning. It was them on the roof. Half asleep, he tried to assure me that it was just a dream. “Go back to sleep,” he suggested. But I couldn’t sleep. I’d had prophetic dreams before that warned of disaster, and I knew I should listen. That morning Paul went out to get the newspaper as he did every day. He came rushing in to show me an important article. It was a scientific report determining that if a big earthquake hit Santa Cruz, the land there would turn into quicksand. Needless to say, we started making plans to relocate. An earthquake did hit Santa Cruz much later than we had been there, and the neighborhood we lived in did turn to quicksand due to its proximity to the shore. We were sure we’d made the right decision.
I always thought that was the end of it but was also puzzled as to why I would dream about it repeatedly during my childhood. It seemed like a crazy early warning system. Today, I was writing about the struggle I have with staying motivated. I wrote that I feel like I’m slogging through a swamp. Then I remembered the quicksand and realized I constantly feel like I’m being sucked down in quicksand. That’s one reason I smoke pot. It takes me out of that mire. When I’m not fighting against that quicksand, I have the energy to function in other ways. I can create, do chores, even going out is often a struggle. I used to think it was emotional. I came out of a dysfunctional and violent home, and throughout my life I’ve experienced trials and tribulations that you usually only hear or read about and certainly too many to write about. Now I think it’s more than that. I’m sure there’s a medication that people take now. But when I was young, I was told I was just lazy, antisocial, over-sensitive... I could go on and on. In reality, I guess I just need a little helping hand sometimes.