Saturday, November 27, 2010

Popcorn Therapy

In my movie marathon, I watched many of my favorite movies of all time. Movies that make me feel good, that bring me relief, that remind me of the blessings I have in my own life. This is why I love movies in general -- their ability to transport me to another world and, in the same breath, cause reflection about my own. Let's call it popcorn therapy.

My favorites collection ranges all over the spectrum, but the ones that ring truest have shaped not only my personal views and opinions but even my life's greatest ambitions. Dead Poets Society and Hoosiers touch upon even my career in teaching and coaching, showing not just the impact a teacher and coach can have upon a student but also that power that a student or team can have on a passionate although flawed adult. Field of Dreams gave me the hope that with love all things which seem impossible cannot remain so. Good Will Hunting lit forth in me that true friendship means loving someone else and wanting for them more than you could ever do for yourself. But two of my favorites, The Color Purple and Steel Magnolias, trace not only the beginnings and lifelong journeys of friendship (as what I believe all my most treasured movies and books do) but the relationships of strong women. Women who were forced to be stronger and tougher than they themselves ever thought to be. Women whose strength resided not only within each self but also within those closest to them. These are the women I have thought about all weekend.

It is a hard thing to be strong. Everyone assumes that strength is the opposite of weakness when, truthfully, the very essence of strength is the awareness of weakness. To know all the soft spots within yourself, and still have the courage to expose them, is the last empowerment we have at times. Lately, I haven't felt very strong. I know that I will continue to have days where my weaknesses and fears nip at my heels. I also realize, however, that fleeing them is not an option, for I will never be fast enough to outrun them. I've never outrun anything in my life.

Probably too much butter on my popcorn.

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