Trapped

Quarantine is being trapped. I’m having some trouble with it.

Friyay night (super yay)

I’ve been trapped before. I know how it feels. I hate it to my very core. Now lest you say everyone hates being trapped, no. They don’t. Some people choose it for security, actually many do. Many many do. In fact I’d venture to say it’s the status quo, at least in the Midwest, which is what I know.

People stay trapped in marriages because they have security. People are trapped in jobs. They are comfortable. People stay in homes, in communities, in churches they don’t believe what’s being professed, even vacation to the same damn places year after year after year. Same friends whether or not they actually get along or have anything in common. Security, comfort, trapped but not really right? Because they have a choice and they choose to stay in the cage.

Still trapped. Hate to tell ya.

But it’s no matter to me if you like your cage. You do you. I’m not judging though it may sound like it. At least recognize it. I do completely judge people for not living in reality. I suppose I shouldn’t. It’s a coping mechanism. I guess if you are a loving, kind individual who needs that you got it babe.

If you are a fucking asshole who treats people like shit because you are too scared to leave your cage, fuck you then. Get a life. Step out. Change for you and for others.

Okay back to me. Trapped. I grew up trapped and not knowing it. When I saw Plato’s Allegory of the Cave I had a visceral connection to it. The people are staring at the wall of the cave, chained down, and they think that the reflections on the wall are real life. It’s all they’ve ever known. One gets loose and runs away and finds out real life isn’t the shadows on the cave wall. He goes back and tells them but they don’t believe him.

My cave wall was my small town, actually smaller than that. It was my school and my home on the farm with my sisters and parents. I didn’t grow up going to ball games, actually the list of what we didn’t do is so huge it’s easier for me to tell what we did do. First of all we were on a farm five miles from town but it was like it was 60 miles the way my parents acted. Things we left the farm for: groceries once a week, my sisters and I went to Sunday School, once a month we went to visit a family we were friends with. That is my elementary school experience. When I got to middle school I got to go roller skating maybe three times, to the movies maybe twice, my BFF’s house four times, the fair one day, and camping maybe three times. That’s in a YEAR. I was on that farm or school otherwise. Nowhere else. I swear.

No band or sports because then someone would have had to come get us after practice. Gotta be on the bus. That limits your friends then. I didn’t date anyone seriously until Hillbilly, not for lack of trying. I was a romantic little cuss. Pathetically so. Then I was so shocked that someone wanted me. And I looked at that cave wall and thought you know what the hell and walked down the aisle less than two years later, at age 19, because he asked me. Or sort of told me. It went like this, “We’ve been dating awhile now… so we should probably get engaged…” It had been 14 months; we got married five months later. I wasn’t pregnant either. Just stupid as fuck. I had a year of college under my belt.

I trapped myself in a marriage and in southwest Missouri just when I was so close to escaping. Isn’t that so funny? It’s a riot. I didn’t know shit. Just that cave wall. I was in college yes but I lived with my best friend from my hometown and spent every spare minute with the Hillbilly so I still didn’t learn a damn thing about the world that freshman year of college.

So then I’m married. Twenty years old, in college and married. Nothing like that to set you apart from everything and everyone. School and home. No parties or shit like that. Hillbilly didn’t even really like me going to see that BFF so I stopped eventually.

Then three years into the marriage I almost escaped again. I mentioned in a post recently that I cheated on the Hillbilly once. I fell in lust with a guy at my work; well he chased me first then I saw him. I was so starved for attention folks. He dragged me down further to get in my pants for hmmm probably 8 minutes. The goddamn Hillbilly had asked me for a “date” and showed up at my door the morning after when I was crying in the shower. Looking back I was so depressed. I went back and then left him and then went back and then left and back, three times in a year. I was making it real finally and had an apartment I was gonna share with someone. I was to move from my GD parent’s house (God that was awful) that weekend. Hillbilly’s mom asked if I had cared about her ever in my life to go to a counselor just once for her. Psshht just once. Whatever. Of course.

Well this was a Southern Baptist preacher, not a “real” unbiased counselor. He did say that two make problems happen, didn’t shame me for the affair, but then said that I’d be breaking a promise to God if I divorced the Hillbilly. Well shit. I still had my faith I guess. So I moved back in with Hillbilly and didn’t leave for 25 years. I went to church 20 of those. It kept me there where I was supposed to be. Another trap.

There’s the whole vibe of the Southern Baptists, women are second class citizens. We can’t be pastors or leaders but in actuality women are doing the important work in a church and it’s like everywhere else in the midwest where the respect goes to the white men leading shit while the women are in the background making the world go around: nursery workers, cooks, Sunday School teachers, children’s choir, Wednesday night Bible clubs (had to beg a handful of men to take the boys), more women in the pews too. I remember an adult choir contest where I got to lead a team and it was a competition. The insurance guy and I had a little funny (I thought it was anyway) ribbing going during it. Then I got all creative and had some fun and his nose got out of joint when it looked like he might lose the contest for a minute.

One more thing for now on the Southern Baptists. There was this sermon I heard several times , the umbrella sermon. The woman is to stay under the umbrella. The man is the umbrella if I remember right. All the “trouble” hits him and the woman is “protected.” So you were told to stay under the umbrella of your man, to follow him and be submissive.

Yeah.

I was able to live in that situation for all those years because I adored my children and focused on them. I left home at home when I went to work. I focused on my work completely. At home I focused on my children. I made the best of my cage. As the first one went to college and then the second was getting ready to I saw my cage fully though. And couldn’t do it.

So I busted out of the marriage. I had already left the church a few years before. One month later I started dating Hoppy. Yes I have some issues. Left Hoppy last April. Started dating Cranky Narcissist in May.

HOWEVER folks! I left CN the week of Labor Day. That is September! So I have made it seven whole months! And now am dating The Masseuse but am thinking that isn’t going to last much longer. I do like him but things are falling apart with his life and it’s a lot for a new relationship honestly. Different post.

I was going to write how I know how to live in a cage but I cried several times while writing this. I did live in cages. I was trapped. It’s killing my soul to feel trapped, to be so alone. It feels as if the world has ended when I go out to run and no one is there.

Apocalyptic films always scared the shit out of me and it feels I’m living in one.

Photo by Denniz Futalan on Pexels.com

2 thoughts on “Trapped

  1. This is a really heartbreaking post. Thank you for sharing. You have led such an interesting life. I don’t understand the American midwest and the culture you describe, but it’s fascinating to read about. Your choices and eventual freedom do make an enthralling story. Keep on living the dream, you will be properly free again.

    Like

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