The Ramblings of a Village Idiot
I have a problem.
I want to do all of the things. I want to do all of the things right now. I want to do all of the things right now, and I want to do them all by myself.
Have you ever heard that old quote that no one really knows where it came from, and when you Google it to find out where it actually came from, it somehow gives you one link to an old African proverb on Wikipedia and then somehow also links you to a book by Hillary Clinton?
At this point in my story, I will turn to trusty ole Wikipedia to really determine what this actually means, not that I can't infer it myself, but because I also feel like citing some sort of source makes me feel more validated in what I think the quote means. It's fine. This is fine.
This is what Wikipedia says,
"It takes a village to raise a child is an African proverb which means that it takes an entire community of different people interacting with children in order for a child to experience and grow in a safe environment. The villages would look out for the children. This does not mean an entire village is responsible for raising your children and/or the children of a crowd."
Maybe you know where I'm going with this, mostly because this is all I ever talk about. And no, it does NOT have to do with being tired and needing a nap. Maybe it does a little bit. I don't know.
Back to my problem: I want to do all of the things, all of the time, by myself, because I don't know how to accept help.
Last month, I wrote a post that took entirely too long to type saying that I got into an accident on my bike. It was super tight...It was not super tight. I sprained both of my wrists, broke my left hand, and in one word to describe my overall state of how I was feeling and I am currently still kind of feeling, it was: Ouchy. It has been a very frustrating and difficult place to be in with a problem like mine. My hands didn't work. That meant no working; and THAT means:
No screening shirts
No coffee roasting
No packing packages
No writing notes for packages
No playing music
No high fives
Things I COULD do:
Text with my right index finger
Point at things
Learn to accept help from the people that have supported me every day even if I was feeling sorry for myself because I need to feel like I'm the one taking care of people and not the other way around.
I don't know if anyone struggles with this-Actually, I know several people that struggle with this. I know this because we talk almost every week about how we need to learn how to not struggle with this.
ACCEPTING HELP FROM PEOPLE IS HARD.
In the past month, the community that I have been blessed enough to be a part of and the people that create what feels like a small family, has stood along side of me and my company. People have brought meals to my home, helped me roast coffee, helped me pack gear, helped me write notes, helped me get to appointments, help get my bike in order, replace my parts, get my bike moved, keep me from going into massive debt over medical bills until insurance figures out what they're doing and foremost kept me connected to other people and companies I didn't even know we're out there and willing to keep me on my feet. The community that I never really knew existed until 2 years ago, is the reason that I haven't lost my freaking mind.
It takes a village.
Yeah okay, the quote is talking about a child being raised by a community. The village looks out for the child. The child is brought up, knowing that it is protected and taken care of. That's super tight.
And that's kind of how I feel about this company and this community. Having to say, "Hey I'd like to cash in that favor," is one of the most difficult things I think I have had to do in a long time. I don't like being a burden and I definitely do not like not being able to control everything. But the fact that a group of people in and outside of my very own, "Village" have been willing to step in and say "Hey. We've got this. You need to rest," is one of the craziest things I have ever experienced. I mostly wrote today's blog to say thank you again. To every single person that has reached out, taken my work home, come to my home to help me, brought over meals, and send words of encouragement, please know that it is not lost on me. I know not everyone has this. I wrote this to really drive the point that this little proverb relates not only to a child, but to your business, your work, your passion, your dream, your high days, your super low days, and all the other days where you feel like the president of the #BlackCatSadToadClub or king of the #BlackCatFriendshipClub--Success, in any aspect, is not achievable by yourself. And I think it's super important, especially for myself, to remember that.
This community is here for you. We, at BlackCat, are here for you just like you have been here for us. And if BlackCat is never known for making good coffee, putting out good gear, or giving out good high fives, I hope that it is remembered as a company that stood by what we started doing and committed to from the start: Being people that support people, supporting people.
Supporting people, other companies, artists, their ideas, starting collaborations, giving people a chance, picking someone up when they go down. Just listening. Just being there.
It takes a village. Happy Wednesday. --Nick