Disney Series of Self Help- Finding Nemo. Just keep swimming!

I was just digging on the ocean theme of last week, so dragged Finding Nemo out of the depths for today’s DSSH. And before you ask? You bet your sweet ass I force my kids to sit down and watch movies with me ALL DAY. They’re all like “Mummy can we please go out and get some sunlight and explore the awesome world around us and learn to read and write?” And I’m like “No way girls. That shit’s for dorks. Sit down, watch TV and let your brains turn to mush”.  Phew. Feels so good to get that out there. Now that we’ve got that established, let’s commence, shall we?

Fishies. Life’s greatest lessons can be learned here. None of this ‘experiencing the world’ shit.

Finding Nemo is a fave of Miss SP at the moment. Except for Bruce the shark. I think she gets confused between the shark and our puppy, also named Bruce. It’s a lot for a 2.5 year old to get their head around. The husband and I actually went to the cinemas to watch it many moons ago, and subsequently he ‘got something in his eye’ at the end, causing his eyes to water *cough* was totes crying, *cough*.

Main theme? Holding on too tight can have the opposite effect of what we want. Sometimes we gotta trust that others are going to make the right choices, and all we can do is support from the wings. And when shit goes wrong you gotta just keep pushing through. There’s always a way around things.

So from the outset we see the back story for Nemo’s Dad, Marlin. He was ready to welcome a full brood with his wife Coral, when out of nowhere they were attacked, leaving his wife and all his little future eggy children gone. All bar one, who was cut but not fatally. Little Nemo. So fast forward to Nemo ready for school. He’s excited! Marlin is freaked.right.out. (Which I can relate to as I am dragging the chain big time on Miss DP’s foray into school next year. She must never grow up. NEVER). Marlin is so, so, so over-protective of Nemo that he stops him from experiencing and enjoying life. Nemo is gettin’ a little tired of Dad’s OTT nature. When Marlin steps in at a school excursion, Nemo decides to make a stand, swimming away to touch a boat, but that leads to him getting nabbed by some divers and taken away. Cue panic (even more than the usual amount) from Marlin. Lesson? You might think you’re clinging on for someone else’s best interests, but that only serves to push them away. You don’t need to hold so tightly onto people. And don’t trust divers. They’ll scoop you up fo’ sho’.

finding nemo
Chasin’ hussies

Marlin is out of his mind. He tries to swim after the boat but can’t seem to catch up. Funny that. He desperately begs anyone going past for help, and runs into a fish called Dory, who is cute and bumbling and seems to have a case of source amnesia. You know, the perfect side kick. Anyways, Dory says she saw where the boat went, but as they go along, she can’t remember. Nor can she remember Marlin. Gets a little hairy there. Fed up, Marlin turns to leave but the pair run into Bruce the shark. Marlin automatically assumes Bruce is evil, but c’mon. No one called Bruce can be evil! Exhibit A- Bruce Jenner.

See? Bruce= not evil

Bruce proves to be a straight-up shark, trying to live a life fish-free. Not an easy feat. With his farm now a bit calmer, Marlin spots the mask in the shark meeting HQ. Looks like shit can get sorted out easily! Oh wait, no, a scuffle ensues, blood is spilt and Bruce realises he’s a shark. Marlin and Dory manage to escape without being eaten, and with the mask. The hunt is on! Lesson here? Don’t write people off straight away. You never know what great things may come out of giving someone a chance. Appreciate the support you’re given, and take support when it’s offered to you.

While Dad is scrambling to find him, Nemo is placed into a fish tank of a dentist’s office in Sydney, in preparation for handover to a crazy kid. Kids and fish don’t mix. In kindergarten we had a girl who carried our school fish in her pocket all day, poor bastards. They had to get flushed by the afternoon upon the realisation her denim overalls smelled fishy. It’s not looking good Nemo.  Scared and unsure, he’s taken in by the fish tank’s resident crew. Being rebellious has not landed him in a good spot. Lesson? Even when being mega-controlled, you’ve gotta look for the smarter way out of things. Acting impulsively a lot of the time is short term gain for long term pain. Sometimes we also need to trust the help of strangers. When they’re not carrying lollipops.

finding nemo fishtank
Strangers. But no lollipops. So they’re ok.

Meanwhile, Marlin hasn’t given up on Nemo. Through explosions and being chased by crazy fish, Marlin finds courage he never knew he had. And Dory’s memory actually functions partially when she remembers the address on the diving mask. They take off for Sydney, running into some stoner turtles along the way who get them on the right track. Stone turtle dad provides some very sage advice about allowing kids to be, and giving them space and voila they’ll flourish. A lightbulb moment for Marlin (who’s still probably tripped out himself following being stung by jellyfish).

While Marlin is hanging out with stoners, Nemo is planning his escape. With the support of the tank crew, Nemo is determined to get back into the ocean and back to his Dad. He’s got gumption. But after a failed attempt that nearly sees Nemo sliced up, Gill (the patriarch of the tank) takes a leaf out of Marlin’s book and cans any further attempts at Nemo trying to escape. But word is passed through Nigel the pelican that Marlin is trying to get to Nemo. Rejoice! Nemo is pumped and despite the botched attempt last time, he bounces back and tries again to muck the filter up and this time he succeeds. Lesson- Stoners have some great advice. Just ignore the munchies. If we put trust in others, and let them know we believe they can cope, then quite often they will. People (and sea creatures) rise to the occasion when they are allowed to. Learned helplessness is real and it sucks balls. Don’t enable it. Sometimes when shit goes wrong, you’ve just gotta keep trying. Because what other option do you have?

finding nemo stoner turtle
Dude’s so stoned he can’t even keep his eyes open. Turtles, eh?


So Nemo is waiting in a grotty tank, and Marlin and Dory are seemingly moving 1 step forward, 3 steps back in their hunt for Sydney and Nemo. After chilling out a bit, Marlin goes back to his stress ways when they get caught in a whale’s mouth. He tries fighting against the whale, but to no avail (oh yeah, like what I did there?). Dory tells him to let go and it will all work out, and this time, Marlin listens to Dory and lets go. Which results in them being shot out of the whale’s blowhole right into Sydney harbour. Winning. Lesson? Fighting against the world just makes you tired. Sometimes you gotta roll with the punches and know that eventually shit smooths out. We need to be able to put our trust in people sometimes. It might just work out for the best.

While Marlin is rolling with the punches, Nemo is faced with a setback when they wake up and find the tank is all clean and shiny. Damn dentist being on the ball. But he’s a resilient mo’ fo’. Rather than give up, Nemo improvises when being put in a plastic baggie ready for the fish killer kid. While he’s being clever, Marlin, having been scooped up by a pelican and taken to the dentist’s window, thinks Nemo is dead. Classic Romeo and Juliet shit right here. Except between Father and son. Never fear, Gill to the rescue, managing to shoot out of the tank and onto the crazy kid’s head, resulting in a rather nifty chain of events that sees Nemo heading down the drain into the ocean, and Gill back in the tank. No fish were harmed in the making of that scene. Phew. Lesson? Can’t give up, even when the perfect plan backfires. Because there’s always another way. Not everything turns out the exact way we anticipate, but that doesn’t mean we stop trying.

finding nemo fish net
Could you leave Dory in a net? Hells no.


So now we’re back in the ocean, Nemo trying to find his Dad, and Marlin swimming away, thinking that his son is dead. Ditching Dory after she travelled so far with him. NOT COOL DUDE, NOT COOL. Nemo runs into Dory, whose memory is jogged and her source amnesia suddenly isn’t so sourcey anymore. They chase after Marlin but Dory gets caught in a big trawling net with other fish. Nemo explains to Marlin that he has to swim into the net to help all the fish get out. Finally getting the message after all this time, Marlin puts his faith in Nemo and lets him go. The fish are instructed to ‘just keep swimming’. Dory turns it into a neat little ditty (that I always get stuck in my head when I’m running). They don’t’ give up, keep trying and BAM! Fish overpower the net, and everyone is safe and sound. Back home at the reef, Marlin is more chilled out, and gives Nemo some breathing space, which pays off. Everything works out in the end. Lovely jubly. Lesson- Sometimes taking a step back means you can move forward. And when shit hits the fan? Just keep swimming.

So go on, turn your brain into mush and watch Finding Nemo this weekend. And keep swimming through the shit. It’ll get easier.

  • Jo

    I think you may just have a possible career on the Disney Cruise ships. Here I was thinking you were telling me a story but now I’m on the other side with a pocket full of life lessons. Genius! Love your work Sasha xx

    • Lol! Thanks lovely lady!! I’m not sure the Disney Cruise ships would approve of my potty mouth ha ha! Oh that and I get mega sea sick, so I’d be swearing and vomiting everywhere. Disney’s dream! 😛

  • I can’t believe I’ve never seen the movie, but I did find Nemo at Sydney Aquarium, does that count? Good life lesson that, just keep swimming, or as my mum used to say, everything will come out in the wash. Nice one, Nemo!

    • Zomg your mission for this weekend is to go and watch Finding Nemo! :) It’s a lovely movie, and it’s got some good Aussies in there lending their voices ha ha! Finding Nemo at the Sydney Aquarium is still pretty cool- those clown fish are the cutest! It all does come out in the wash eventually, doesn’t it? Sometimes it just needs a good scrub and a few run throughs, but it works out in the end! x