I recently watched Croods for the first time with my children. Over the years, there has been a few times that we’ve attempted to watch this animated movie but either it was due to the quality or something we never ended up watching it. Finally watching this movie at this point of time in my life was simply divine timing. For the past year, I’ve felt like I’ve been hiding myself and not really being who I truly am. With our nanny leaving and having to tend to my daughter’s health, it has definitely felt like I’ve been living from a place of necessity and old patterns.
In the movie, the Croods family lives in a dark cave for survival, and the dad teaches them ‘never not be scared’, however, the daughter loves the sunlight and always wants to be out in the light. After a sudden earthquake they are basically forced to leave home and venture into the unknown. Starting off the journey their intention was to find another cave to stay in, to search for something familiar. It reminds me of the many times in my life when I have clung onto something familiar and known for dear life because that was what I knew to do. When their home collapsed, they were forced to venture out into the world, and to their surprise right on the other side of what they were familiar with was a beautiful rain forest filled with colours and flowers.
I absolutely love the simplicity and beauty of this metaphor for our lives. Sometimes we are so set and stuck in our ways and engrained in our old patterns that we can’t even see that all we have to do is drop the old and what we’ve been wanting and looking for could just simply be on the other side.
I’m sure that all of us at one point or another in our lives knows how it feels like to be holding onto something that we know full well isn’t right for us anymore or makes us feel unhappy; but we do it anyway because we don’t know what else is out there for us. Much like the Crood family, you really can’t blame the dad for looking for a cave because where else would he know to live and how else would he know how to protect his family. It was also very funny how they believed that anything new is dangerous, I think about the times that I have blocked myself from trying something new or changing because I was afraid of new things because I didn’t know what it would hold or how things would turn out. If we lived life like that, we would simply be repeating old patterns and thoughts and outcomes over and over again until one day you simply feel like your life is the same tape recorder playing over and over like ground hog day.
If it weren’t for Guy, another character that the daughter meets in the movie, they wouldn’t know that there could be something different, that life can be different. He introduces fire into their lives, shoes, amongst other things and most important of all, he teaches them to have ‘ideas’.
At the end of the movie, they all decide to follow Guy to a new land and take a tremendous leap of faith into the unknown, and literally they had to take a leap because the earth collapsed and split into two, so the father had to fling the rest of the family to the other side where they had no idea what was there. In the end, they discover a place by the ocean that is more beautiful than anything they’ve ever seen.
At one point, the daughter said to the dad that she didn’t want to hide anymore, living in a dark cave wasn’t really living; it simply just wasn’t dying. I couldn’t believe the immenseness and wisdom of this phrase, which rang true for me on so many levels. In parallel to my life, holding onto what’s known and made me unhappy rather than stepping out to the unknown feels a lot like not really living, and more like surviving through the routines of the day.
The morale of the movie for me was to ‘follow the light’ and upon reflection, I felt in my heart that this was a message from the universe that I was to remember and follow my inner light – that which makes me shine and makes me happy. In other words, follow what brings you joy and happiness in your life. Even though we can’t be sure of the destination, at least we can be certain that the journey is one that inspires and ignites you. At the end of the day, isn’t it the journey that matters and not the destination? Perhaps our joy and bliss is our inner guide that can lead us away from the dark cave into futures brighter and more exciting than we could ever imagine.