Life on the Rocks

When I was ten I was at the beach in Monterey, California walking over the large boulders, enjoying the challenge and the adventure. And that’s when I saw it. A crab. There are limits to my adventurous spirit.

You know in horror movies when you see someone wants to eat you and you freeze, and then you look around and you realize EVERYONE wants to eat you, that’s how it felt when I noticed that crab was not alone.

There were crabs everywhere. And I know, I know, some people think crabs are “adorable” or whatever, but I can assure you, they are not. Not when you can sense their murderous hunger in their little sideways claws made of grappling hooks.

Like these rocks...but with more crabs.
Like these rocks…but with more crabs.

I panicked, as you do when you feel grossly outnumbered and about to be on the receiving end of upsetting the food chain. I tried to run away, but again, boulders, and that’s when I jammed my leg in between two of them — boulders, not crabs — Effectively ruining my chances to run away and increasing my panic.

Eventually I was able to pull my scraped and bleeding leg out. And much to my dismay and embarrassment, I realized none of the crabs were interested in me at all. All that horror and panic, and it led to no actual dismemberment.

There’s a moral I believe can be drawn from my adventure with sea life.

Sometimes you’re afraid of the wrong thing. My fear of being surrounded and closed in on by an army of what I thought were organized and militant crabs led to me being genuinely trapped by real life boulders. I let one fear dictate my life so completely that I made myself miserable.

We do this with a lot of things. To be honest, most women do this more with their fear of being single than their fear of being in a relationship. Fear of being single can lead to being trapped in a relationship you otherwise would have sensibly avoided.

Because marriage can be a huge societal pressure on a woman. It’s one of those things, like those Monterey crabs—you see one marriage and you think “well it’s only one, I’m still fine” and then you look around and you see marriages everywhere. And the panic builds.

Why am I the only one not married? Is there something wrong with me? Are people talking about me? What if I wait too long and there aren’t any men left? What if I’m single the rest of my life? And in that panic, there are some women who can make the wrong decision.

Panic very seldom leads to good decisions, and relational panic is always very detrimental to your health. The trick seems to be, in this sort of panicked situation where marriage is coming at you from all sides and you’re balancing yourself precariously on rocky ground, to keep an eye on where you’re standing, and to not focus so intently on the married people around you who, more often than not, are minding their own business and encountering their own set of fears and tough decisions.

As the saying goes, life’s a beach. It might be a rocky beach full of giant weaponized spiders craftily hiding between boulders, but it still has a pretty epic view.

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