You are currently browsing the monthly archive for November 2012.

Yesterday, for the very first time I watched the first three movies of the  Twilight series.  We have been avoiding them since they first came out because of all of the negative feedback from Christian sources saying how “dangerous” these books/movies are and yet we watch Heroes, Alphas, X-Men, Avengers and all kinds of other TV shows and movies that portray people having super-powers and using them for good or for evil, as is their nature. I decided to watch them and see what all the fuss was about and to be completely honest I have to say that aside from Edward’s character I didn’t think the series lived up to the hype.  To be fair, however, I have not read the books so everything here is based solely on the movies… and we all know that the books are better than the movie…

For a story line you have the basic love triangle:  Edward is a “bad boy” who doesn’t want to be bad and falls in love with a girl and wants to keep her from becoming like him. So great is his love for her that he leaves her, after saying mean things, and hopes she will forget all about him and move on with a normal life.  Of course they’re both miserable and when he thinks she’s dead he tries to kill himself, more or less.

Bella’s relationship with Jacob is entirely Edward’s fault.  If he hadn’t left her they would have never become close and the entire story would be completely boring.

Jacob, who doesn’t spend nearly enough time without a shirt on, falls in love with Bella, although at one point she does warn Jacob that if he makes her chose between him and Edward “it will always be Edward”.

OK, now for the characters:  Bella, who in my honest opinion is pretty much a spoiled little brat, does whatever she wants without any regard whatsoever to the feelings of the two men who love her.  (Or her father, or anybody else who tries to give her advice.)  I personally believe that both guys could do better but again, there’s no movie if somebody isn’t frustrating…  It also seems to me like Bella’s more in love with the idea of never aging than she is in love with Edward himself but it could be just me.  Throughout the movie she was the aggressor sexually, although they never actually have sex at any point in the first three movies and she tells her father she is a virgin.  I don’t remember very many I Love You’s from Bella (or Edward, for that matter) and it appears to me that she is much more interested in becoming “changed” than she does in being married, which in this day and age is relatively short-termed while becoming a vampire is forever.

Edward is one very noble bad guy.  He did not ask to be a vampire but is now stuck that way for eternity, and he’s got a moral code and standard of ethics that would make any parent think very hard about overlooking the blood-sucking part of his nature.  I mean seriously, he does everything he can to prevent Bella from chosing a vampire life, refuses to have sex with her until they are married, watches over her while she sleeps every night and fights to protect her on a regular basis.  (Of course, if he wasn’t a vampire she wouldn’t need so much protection, I’m just saying’…)  Edward is also extremely patient with Bela, I don’t think very many men would put up with their beloved having another man for her “best friend” and all the embraces and motorcycle rides that went along with that.  Another very impressive thing to me was that Edward is willing to just walk away if she were to choose Jacob over him “because she would be happy”.  Except for the whole must-drink-blood thing Edward is a perfect gentleman, protector and fairy tale come true all rolled into one and what woman doesn’t want a man like that?

Jacob is by genetics a werewolf, born that way and can’t do anything about it.  And honestly, he probably wouldn’t do anything about it even if he could.  While technically not as “evil” as vampires (only because they don’t view humans as food) werewolves are very violent and until they learn to control themselves they can easily cause physical harm to even the person they love the most.  Knowing this causes Jacob to try to end his budding relationship with the Edward-bereft Bella after he “phases” because he loves her enough to know that he could accidentally hurt her and doesn’t want to do that.  But she easily overrides his arguments and refuses to end their friendship, deepening his love for her and frequently misleading him by her actions as to where her heart truly is. Jacob’s character was not nearly as honorable as Edwards, at one point he kisses Bella forcefully and against her will and is continually harassing her to admit she loves him but overall I liked Jacob’s character.  Besides just thinking he is physically more attractive than Edward, Jacob had a sense of “real” about him, a “freshness” that I appreciated.

Both of these men, however, love Bella enough to set aside their “natural” hatred of each other and bring their clans to work together in protecting her from the really evil vampire lady who tries to kills Bella as revenge on Edward for killing her mate in the first movie.

By the end of the third movie Bella has finally made up her mind and told Jacob it isn’t him.  <sigh>  Poor Edward, he’s going to have his hands full.  Nobody’s attitude and behaviors get better after marriage, only worse…

Of course I’m going to have to see the remaining movies, part 1 and part 2 of Breaking Dawn, where Edward and Bella get married and have a, well, I don’t know if it’s a baby but whatever it is they have it, Bella gets changed and (it looks like) they somehow stay friends with Jacob.

So those were the dynamics of the movie and my basic opinion of them but one of the biggest questions I walked away from these movies with is:  Is it healthy to love somebody so much that when they die you die too?  All of my life I would have answered that question with a resounding NO.  My mother would have said no, I should only love God that much.  But is that the right answer?  I don’t know anymore.  I certainly want to be loved like that – I think everybody does, men and women alike!  But very few people are loved that way and even fewer return that deep love to the person who loves them and so we yearn for it and make movies about it and write books about that kind of love, because we don’t have it…and we want it.

The movies were OK and even though I’m not going to rush out and buy them any time soon I have to say that they are not the raging evil that I have been told they were.

I have some more thinking to do but this is where I am at now, taking a long look at everything I’ve ever known and trying to re-evaluate it for truth, for what do I actually believe instead of what I was told I believe?  I am becoming a different person, hopefully that’s a good thing…

Advertisements

The other day I told my  teenaged daughter “Don’t give up being who you are to be with someone else – too much of that and you’ll never get yourself back again.”  As soon as it was out of my mouth I realized that is exactly what I had done…over 18 years ago.

I haven’t felt like I’ve had the privacy to write my heart in a long time.  Over the years I’ve changed – I’ve gone from devout to questioning, from anti to tolerant, from steadfast to wishing…  Who knew the choices we make when we are young could change one’s entire life so completely?  Not the young, the young never know and they don’t listen to anyone who isn’t young.  Stupid that.

Most of the time I feel like I don’t know who I am anymore, or even who I could be.  Oh, I know who I “should” be, I know who I was raised to be.  Wise and gentle, godly and kind, sweet and pure, loving…I should be so very loving.  But I fall short of everything I was told I should be by my mother and by the church.

Yes, I was raised in church from the day I was born.  My parents attended many different pentecostal, charismatic, christian churches throughout my childhood.  We spoke in tongues, raised our hands during the worship service, closed our eyes and some churches we attended even danced during worship.  As a child, church was my favorite place to be.  I loved the worship services and even paid attention to the sermons, many of them changed my life in different ways.  The highlight of my junior high years was Wednesday night youth group and getting to be with all the other “good” kids at church.  It helped me get through my struggles for seven more days until the next Wednesday.

A major theme of many sermons and lessons I’ve learned in church over the years is “Stop trying to do things in your own strength.  You can’t and the very fact that you’re trying to do it on your own probably means it isn’t God’s will for you to be doing it in the first place.”  And yet sitting on the couch, watching television and “waiting for God to do something with me” is equally frowned upon.  Where’s the line?  I am, even this very second, exactly who God created me to be.  He allowed me to go through the circumstances and situations of life that molded and shaped me the way I am.  How do I stop being those things and let God be through me?  I think my current church (of the last 6 years) has put too much emphasis on the doing and the being and not enough on the becoming.  Too much focus on how I act and the way I dress and not enough acceptance of who I am right now, at this very moment because right now, in spite of my warts and damaged heart, I am still God’s creation, God’s child, someone who He loves.

One of the most precious gifts God has given us is free will.  He won’t make anyone love or obey Him, we have to choose to do those things for ourselves.  I’ve made some bad choices and I’ve made some good choices in my life.  Once made, every choice is hard to unmake and life still goes on.  Trying to unmake a past choice usually means making big changes to your present and has the potential to destroy your future.  I am here, right now because God can use me here, right now.  My giftings may come and go according to His choosing, it is by grace I exist.

Funny how we spend 18 years trying to “grow up” as quick as we can but we never really understand the furthest reaching consequences of our actions until much later.  I am just now beginning to realize that some long and hard journeys are chosen simply because the beginning of the trail wound around a rose garden with an enchanting fountain while the paths with the brightest futures are often ignored because they begin by camping in a tent in the middle of a briar patch.

Here I am, on a narrow ledge better suited for a mountain goat than for myself, looking up the trail, looking down the trail, looking over the edge…  There is no future in the past and there is no life over the edge so my only choice is to press onward in hopes that the path will soon widen and I can stop to catch my breath.

Learning which dreams to give up and which dreams to keep have been a painful lesson.  Some dreams are only possible when there are two dreamers who are dreaming the same dream.  A single dreamer cannot complete the work they were called to when they are not walking hand in hand with another like-minded dreamer.  Large works require that many dreamers unite towards building the dream.

More painful, by far, is the awakening of the dreamer who has linked dreams with another only to find that you and your soul-mate aren’t dreaming in the same direction.  To see your dreams slip from your hands because you chose someone who has an entirely different dream – or sometimes – someone who has no dreams at all is quite devastating when your eyes are finally opened to realize the full effects of your choice.

My solution, my “cure” for loneliness has been a success in fact only.  I am not “alone”.  But what no one ever told me is that the greatest depths of loneliness hide inside relationships, not outside of them.  You can be with someone and yet still feel completely and utterly alone.  It is a wounding that takes your breath away and leaves you gasping for your very life, like a drowning man clawing at the surface of the water.  I rushed into marriage believing it was my one and only chance at having a precious gift and I have spent the remainder of my life questioning that choice.

So now the question begs to be asked – not just who am I but have I ever known who I am?  Or have I always been just a compilation of words and actions, attitudes and behaviors that were expected from me by my parents, my church and my schools with no real input of my own?  Have I ever truly had my own opinions or have I always just parrotted the opinions of the “important” people around me?  Things that make you go Hmmm…  I wish I had an answer for that but right now I just don’t know.

I think that I’ve lost myself, that I’m broken and need help.  There are a few things that I’ve been doing because I enjoy doing them just for me:

Painting/Drawing
Writing/Singing/Playing/Listening to Music
Baking
Growing Plants
Helping People
Writing/Blogging/Poetry

These are a good place to start with identifying who I am today.

This is a good place to stop and think some more.

Goodnight.

Butterflies begin life mostly as plain and wormlike caterpillars, slaves of gravity, soft and easily captured yet they don’t stay that way.  For a period of time they withdraw from the world, wrap themselves in a protective covering of their own making and when they emerge, they are something different entirely.  No longer bound to the earth they flutter to new heights as they dazzle the eye with every flap of their wings.  I’m tired of being a caterpillar – I think I need to withdraw, I’m ready to change into something beautiful now…

I am trying the blogging thing again…  Hoping to remain anonymous and yet needing to tell my story – there’s nothing like the desperate search for someone who understands what you’re going through and the anguish of letting anybody who actually knows you see what’s really going on.  This blog is mostly for me to try and get my thoughts and emotions out of my head and “on paper” so that I can sort them out better.  For the record – I totally “get” that many people have a much more difficult life than I do.  Regardless, this is my life and I’m trying to work through it by just writin’ it out… 

I welcome comments, my only request is that if you know who I am please don’t post my name, thanks!