Originally, when I first sat down to write this blog, I was going to call it “The Time the Rose-Coloured Glasses Came Off”
I had it all planned out. My thoughts on everything, my arguments for and against and why I thought it was time to admit to myself that perhaps I’d wasted to much time putting certain individuals on a pedestal.
I sat on it for days. I knew I was going to write it. I had a plan. It was well thought out. A solid piece of writing.
Just like that, the wind got knocked out of my sails and everything changed.
There’s no need to reiterate what went on and what happened- but those in the Outlander fandom know exactly what I’m talking about.
I don’t want to talk about that.
The purpose of today’s blog is that I want to talk about me. Not in the ‘Look at me! I’m being self- indulgent’ kind of way … more the ‘Jesus Christ, I can’t believe I let it get to me and turn me into that kind of person’ kind of way.
I’ve always maintained I’ve sat on the fence when it comes to this fandom. I’ve tried my best to understand and appreciate everyone’s point of view – regardless whether I agree or not. I’ve always opted for respectful, honest, discourse rather than childish finger pointing and outright accusation. I’ve tried to ensure that if I don’t have all the facts – I ask. And I’ve always said that If I’m ever wrong – please correct me.
I’ve gone to great lengths to try and remain impartial to most of the fandom dumpster fires and been there for those who needed a shoulder to cry on or someone to vent to.
That said, there have been times where I’ve failed miserably at doing that and let my emotions get the better of me. In fact, I can count no less than 3 times in my time in this fandom (No, I am not going to mention them here. However, I have no doubt that some of you reading this would know what they are as well) where I have wanted nothing more than to go on 280 character rants ad-nauseum about whatever the situation happened to be and declare that “Ye verily thou art naught but a shit storm of epic proportions and I say unto thee that thou ‘st wrong and needeth to take all the damn seats!” – OK … So maybe not exactly like that, because let’s face it my Shakespearian is not that great and way, way, way off the mark … but you get my point.
But none of them have affected me as much as what’s been going on these last few weeks.
I think I may have mentioned it a blog or so back, but Covid- 19 has simultaneously brought out both the best and the worst in people and sadly, what I’ve seen in the Outlander fandom was ultimately the worst in people.
I became quick to react. I became judgemental. I forgot about facts. I forgot about truth. I spiralled and got caught up in the he said-she said of every argument. I took to twitter DM’s and WhatsApp group chats to vent and rant and rave over everything.
“How could they do this?” I demanded to know “Why is there no apparent element of seriousness about this situation?”
I was hurt. I was angry. I was disappointed, let down and couldn’t believe that it would’ve even got that far, and someone let it happen. I didn’t want to be believe what was going on, I really didn’t but, when you find yourself drowning in a sea of negativity, eventually you give up and go right along with it.
That is until, as I said, the wind got knocked out of my sails and everything changed. I realised I was wrong. I realised I was angry and disappointed for all the wrong reasons and I came to see that everything I thought was the truth turned out to be an outright lie.
For those that know me, they know that Social Media is more or less my only link to the outside world. With the exception of going to work and attending various medical appointments, I don’t get out very much. Recently, Twitter has become my happy place. My place to talk with and make friends with people from all around the world. Most of the time it’s a place where I can laugh and #DankMeme to my hearts content. It’s where I can fangirl in peace without hurting or annoying anyone else that I know in real life… but when it becomes a dumpster fire that starts burning down your own lawn? It’s time to take some action!
So, I stepped back. I didn’t tweet for a couple of days. In fact, I didn’t do anything for a few days. I took naps. Lots of them. I took a couple of deep breaths and went and got some air. I thought about my behaviour and best how to fix it. I set about sending apologies to every single person I took to venting to or ranted at. I locked down my twitter account and began the process of unfollowing, blocking and muting people. Regardless whether I had spoken to them in the past or not. I’ve started paying close attention to the language I use- in the hope that I can lift people up and make a positive impact rather than complaining about every #FirstWorldProblem that comes my way. To not listen to the hate and the hyperbole spewed by the darker corners of this fandom. To not take every, single thing to heart and swear it is gospel truth – until the truth presents itself.
For the remainder of 2020 my goal is to be a better fan. A better person. Frankly, I would go so far as to say be a better Human.
Maybe we should all aim for that this year huh?
What do you say?