reel under (something)

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reel under (something)

1. To struggle to walk or remain upright due to the weight of something. The recruit was reeling under the steel beams across his shoulders, but the drill sergeant wouldn't let him put them down. It breaks my heart to see such young kids reel under the weight of their backpacks as they walk to and from class each day.
2. To struggle to deal with some oppressive or difficult burden or responsibility. I was happy about the promotion at first, but I have to admit that I'm reeling a bit under the weight of all these responsibilities. I could see that she was reeling under having to make such a difficult decision.
See also: reel

reel under something

 
1. Lit. to stagger under the weight of something. Tony reeled under the weight of the books. She knew she would reel under the heavy load.
2. Fig. to stagger because of a blow. The boxer reeled under the blow to his chin. Fred reeled under the beating that Mike gave him.
3. Fig. to suffer because of a burden. Gary reeled under the responsibilities he had been given. I was just reeling under the burdens of my new job.
See also: reel