“Meg, put your crown on your head and wear it- that’s so great!”
The Academy Awards are right around the corner. The A-listers are all lined up, gowns are being chosen, and there is Oscar buzz around the nominations that has so many people getting excited. The weeks, days and hours up until Oscar night become pregnant with anticipation of whose creative genius will get noticed and take away the big prize. I am certainly one of those individuals who absolutely loves the sparkle, the glitz, and the appreciation of the gifts that the artists bring to the fore on this one big night of the year, every year.
As a child, dating back as far as I can remember, I was raised on the movies. Something that passed down from generation to generation I suppose. It was the always the favorite mode of entertainment that my family chose on weekends and holidays to spend time together and bond. I know it was because my grandmother instilled a love of the movies – or the “pictures”-in my father and he shared this love with me. “Hollywood” for me was a way to showcase for the world some really amazing stories. And watching these stories as told through the eyes of talented, actors, directors and producers, another world would unfold right before my eyes on the big screen. A world that I could count on to provide material that would be thought provoking inspiration and/or have me seeing a reality through another’s perspective. It is an experience that invited me into a world of possibility, of dreams and most of all a place where you could challenge yourself as well.
As a child, I needed the fantasy to continue after the movie ended because my own reality was sometimes too much to bear. I would pretend that I too was the hero who would save the day like a certain princess saved the world from the darkness. I would create my own stage where the ugly duckling gained the confidence of a beautiful swan and show the world what she was made of. I got to decide which characters could come and play and which ones would be left behind. And, if I was lacking in direction as to where to take my story, I looked through the newspaper (back then that was the only way) and pick a movie that spoke to me to go see.
Now, as an adult, because I relate to the world of story telling on a different level, a level where I am thrilled to explore my gifts of creating, as I think about my own life and where I want to take my story, I still go to the theater to get the inspiration I need to move forward and live the life I want. I am motivated by the sharing of vulnerability as I watch on the big screen others navigate through grief. I am moved to tears as I watch a pair of dreamers dance and sing as they risk following their bliss. I am torn by the story of secret lives, hidden away in the shadows because they fear sharing their authenticity with a world that is becoming less and less accepting of differences. And I know that these movies, each one of them, add so much to the fabric of society that needs to also be exposed to the realities so that positive change can and will happen.
And, I ultimately come away from a moving feature on a Saturday night at the movies with added momentum that where I am right now, whether I feel happy or sad, this is not the end of my story. That as I am inspired by the genius of others, I get the chance here and now, to be the hero, the princess, the beautiful swan, the collector of amazing people, and yes, I get to put my crown on my head and wear it if I so choose. And yes, I get to tell the story of the life that I want and share it with the world. You see, I am a writer. I thrive when I set out in written or spoken word to share my vulnerabilities, failures and yes, my joy and successes. If not only to bring hope to others that they are not alone in the drama as it plays out, but to also provide inspiration so that others are empowered to know that so much is possible. And perhaps, one day I too will walk the red carpet at the Oscars. I too will get to put on the glamour and the glitz. I too will have earned a place of distinct honor after having shared my story of wounds, strength, and courage. As I get ready to watch the exciting display of talent this year, I smile to myself that where I am right now is not the end of my story as it is not the end of yours as well. The suspense of the evening, as well as the suspense of my life does in fact grow as we all get to live out whatever desires we decide to write in our screenplay that subsequently unfolds on a bigger stage. A night of the Oscars is so exciting, it might just be the motivation that you need when you get tired along the way. Kick back and rest on that one Sunday in the Spring, grab a bowl of popcorn with your loved ones, take in the different themes as they play out before you and get what you need, but never ever quit. For I know, our stories must be told, for someone out there, each one of our lives matter on a greater scale than you will ever know. No, this is not the end of our stories, just the new beginning! So rest, buy a ticket and see you at the movies! Let that be YOUR big prize for now!
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