Our lives are not fairy tales…

I’m a visual person. I learn best when I can see something. I think in pictures. I have vivid dreams. I experience much of life by seeing – and that sense seems higher functioning than the others… yes, they all play their part, but seeing something is… in my world – is powerful and quite affecting.

For as long as I can remember, Movies have been a most intriguing thing. I can get lost in another’s world – their reality for hours… forgetting my own, feeling part of their lives, their experiences and whether the writer, director or actors themselves intended to ‘teach’, I seem to see something, a lesson, watching their circumstances unfold.

This past weekend I wanted a chill night so I ordered pizza, picked up a movie and plopped on my couch ready for a mindless evening…. But what I experienced wasn’t the chill, disengaged-from-life 120 minutes I planned – this movie rocked me!

Maleficent.

I hadn’t remembered the storyline, or watched the trailer, so I didn’t know what was about to happen, but I was intrigued from the opening credits.

The story unfolds – the stark contrast of 2 worlds. Human and Fairy. And as with many fairytales – the two unlikely characters meet and fall in love. Sadly it’s not ‘and they all lived happily….’ scenario after that. Through the course of time – greed, desire for power and the approval of the king influence the prince to play his hand well. He gains the Fairy’s trust and in her defenseless moment – he steals her strength. He takes her wings.

Watch the scene…. (Click here).

Maleficent.

Broken.

The realization of betrayal and intentional pain. She is wounded – to the core. Her cries piercing.

I sat there – moved by the depth of her pain. In that moment – I felt broken with her. I sat watching, knowing there was a moment of truth, a moment where a choice would be made. This moment – where brokenness was tangible – physical – deep… and it would catapult her either into bitterness, anger and revenge – ultimately affecting every aspect of herself and her kingdom or, if she drew on something deeper, a different choice could be made…… 

So if you know anything about Sleeping Beauty’s story… (and as with most fairy tales and blockbusters), bitterness and revenge was Maleficent’s choice. The tone of the movie shifted. It was dark. I watched, hoping there would be a moment where Maleficent realizes her choice, her reaction to how her life played out, and change, before affecting her kingdom and all those around her. 

It does come, later in the film but damage is done. People have been hurt, killed and even in the midst of hidden pain, she fights, mostly with herself, seeing the result of her choice, affecting the one she loves – truly!

I won’t tell you the ending…. so you should just watch it…. But, since Saturday, I’ve been thinking about it over and over…..

Our lives are not fairy tales that play out in 120 minutes with directors, producers and actors (who can write happy endings)……. but there are some similarities. We are the main character and “life (does) happen” — and we have choice to write our script, our reactions to the action, the drama, the horror that is the backdrop and scenes of our everyday.

In our moments of brokenness, when our wings – our strength, our unmet expectations, our dreams, the very identity we’ve grown accustomed to, gets taken – what choices do we make? Revenge? Anger? Bitterness? Or do we search deep? Do we seek something higher? Are we willing to look beyond the brokenness, the pain and the power we could play out over people.

Maleficent lived her days acting out of her pain. She eventually figured somethings out and got some resolution……… And ultimately was able to move forward, altering her future course, but she wasn’t the same fairy, and her world was changed.

As I sat watching, and as the days continue to unfold around me, I wonder if I’m functioning in brokenness, allowing the pain of my storyline to affect my day to day, my little ‘kingdom’, or if I have taken the pain of my script and chosen to alter the course – choosing to allow brokenness to make me stronger……..

….. still working that out!

 

* I think you should watch the movie… It’s an interesting one!

 
 
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