Not THAT kind of crabs ya pig…
I have been trying to make myself a little more open and vulnerable to continue my growth and foster healthy relationships. I was never one to talk about my struggles or share personal, intimate details with anyone, and as a result I was often misunderstood and I felt isolated, even from those closest to me.
We have branched the Grim Dystopian brand out into the blog, written interviews, and every so often I will post something personal about our family or my piano playing on social media. That is all part of the journey to help with what matters most – allowing myself to be weird and open, create healthy relationships, a positive community, and surround myself with loved ones – real loved ones.
Well god damnit, I think I succeeded!
Last week I posted a Facebook update to notify everyone I was taking a break from the blog. I was specific in that I was in a good headspace, but just focusing on other creative outlets. The outpour of support, comments, and reactions just blew my mind. I love what we have created with Grim.
We are Facebook friends with someone (frankly, I do not even know why…) who puts out bullshit and gets bullshit in return. Every post is opinionated, unwarranted, and controversial, which is totally fine if that is what you are into. The comments in return are ugly, ignorant, and often end with people fighting and threatening to kick everyone’s ass. That just seems exhausting to me.
I mention this because when Ken and I started the podcast, our goal was to lift our metal community up, to share music coming out of our scene, to highlight talent, to make people smile and perhaps forget about something shitty happening in their life, even if it is only for a split second.
I know life is not centered around social media comments and likes (or should not be), but when I see my post about ‘just not feeling’ it filled with supportive comments, while another person’s is filled with hate (regardless of what they post), it is obvious that what we put out there boomerangs back – give and you shall receive.
You know me…that led me down a rabbit hole of thoughts.
When I was younger, I was a fairly angry person. Meh – maybe not angry – more miserable. I did not do my part to be supportive, I did not trust anyone’s intentions, I had not embraced my anxiety and weirdness, I was just miserable. I met Ken and things began to change. I started growing up, because, despite who I thought I was at twenty-three, I was not a ‘grownup’ (even if I was legally). Then I started to realize I was surrounded by other females that just wanted to tear me down. They used me, talked about me behind my back, lied to other friends to pit people against each other. Again, exhausting.
Then Ken and I read about the crab mentality, or crab theory. In summary, any crab stuck in a bucket could theoretically get out, but if there were multiple crabs, their mates would keep pulling the other crabs down in a selfish attempt to halt progress of the achiever – misery loves company. In humans, the theory translates to cutting people down, jealousy, resentment, selfishness, all the fun qualities.
Something immediately clicked. I realized I was in a bucket with a bunch of other shitty crabs preventing me from getting out. Ken warned me this would happen. When I was the ripe age of twenty-three, I thought I was sitting on top of the world with endless friends. He told me that when I got older, I would realize those people were not really my friends, but true friends would stick around. He could not have been more right.
That article led me to really evaluate who I was surrounding myself with. So, I did what my bestie tells me not to do, and I started distancing myself from everyone – and honestly – I even distanced myself from her for a couple of years. We were never ‘not friends’, but we were at one point not as close (because someone spread lies).
I slowly and quietly climbed out of the bucket while the rest of them were pulling each other back in. I made it out, and now I have my true friends. Friends that support me, challenge me, encourage me, guide me, tell me when I am wrong so I can be better, and most importantly, make me laugh.
…and it just keeps getting better – thanks to Grim. I could write every week about the amazing people we have connected with thanks to the show and everything that comes along with it.
It would be unfair to not mention that my best friend of 20+ years was never a shitty crab – she was in the same bucket, climbing out simultaneously.
I am thankful to be surrounded by awesome crabs. We should all strive to be the crab that locks claws to give the other crabs a ‘leg up’. Life is hard enough as it is.