Friday, July 03, 2015

Sea Changes

Okay, so I know I likely at some point in the last nearly 16 years of blogging I've mentioned at some point how rewatching the movie "Easy Rider" as an adult has shown me all too clearly that my ideas and memories have undergone something of a sea change. I remember seeing "Easy Rider" as an impressionable teen and thinking it was the coolest movie I've ever seen. Rewatching it in my late forties I found little to like in it, lots of crazy violence, racism, drugs, stoned sex in the graveyard. Struck me as a self-indulgent piece of tripe written/acted/directed by a fleet of dope heads. Didn't seem so 'cool' now.

I started to talk about this last year, how incredibly different things look after tide and time, I wrote a piece about the Voodoo Museum in New Orleans that terrified me as a child and how as an adult I realized how stupid my fear was. I never finished writing about how that related to a family relationship and how I'd gone last year into the zero effs left to give zone.

Tonight was another of those things that look so different after time. The movie "The Turning Point" came on television just as I was winding up a new batch of plarn to crochet baskets to store things in. Decided to watch it again, the movie was one of many different books and movies referenced in the book I recently reviewed for NLQ 'Jane Eyre's Sisters' by Jodie Bower One of the best books I've read in a very long time. I started reading the book thinking it would only talk about traditional portrayal of women in literature, but it was so much more, right down to psychological profiles of women in both life and literature. I came away from the book with a deeper understand of why I do some of the things I do and why others in my life make some of their own choices. Not so much 'right' or 'wrong' but the factors that play into how we forge our own lives.

I have always loved classical music and liked to watch ballet, so I was eager to see this film again. Oh, the insanely perfect leaps ending in a kneeling position carried out by a very young Mikhail Baryshnikov in his performance of "Le Corsaire" I was delighted to see performances by Suzanne Farrell, Peter Martins and other luminaries of the ballet world.

What I saw in the film that I'd not thought too much about was the corrosive power of resentment and jealous on the part of Shirley MacLaine's character. This time I could not help but see how not dealing with negative emotions the right way when they first appeared, but allowing them to fester and explode caused MacLaine's DeeDee to live her entire life without enjoying much of it. It ruined everything for her, leaving her bitter, twisted up too much to realize all she had to do was just let go of those things. I spent much of the film wishing DeeDee into therapy.

Don't live like that if you can help it. Let go.

I know I'm trying to do that, even if I'm here complaining occasionally about people showing their buttcracks at church or dealing with things that happened to me in the past. With the exception of perhaps two people in my life I can honestly say I've forgiven and forgotten. I'm going to have to work on the other two obviously.

One of them is a hopeless cause because he's the one that abused me and he's now dead.

The other one I'm going to have to figure out a way to let go, forgive and forget without allowing my own boundaries to be crossed again. Boundaries are new for me, another thing I'm having to relearn after my childhood and years in a cult. I am no longer willing to let my boundaries to be breached by anyone.


1 comment:

Brian said...

Thank-you for writing this... I think you get a pass if butt-cracks oppose your efforts at churching! The image pleases me so much that I have not really forgotten it since you first mentioned it and the offense it caused you. But think of it: Here is this somewhat reluctant goer sitting and listening to the day's interpretation and is really probably there at least half to please someone else! Then in the midst of God's holy of holy words out of Pastor Help-You-Out's mouth, Sister Butt-crack rises like a hot-air balloon to fill your sky-view!
Surely you can see that you have been at least saintly in not cursing her out loud! Doesn't the Leonard Cohen song say, There is a crack, a crack in everything! ?
I very much enjoy and benefit from reading your words. I don't care much about the forgetting and forgiving (for myself) because I do not believe they are at all essential except as they naturally occur and if they naturally occur. They are not a goal any more than remembering or holding a grudge. I have come, in my sixties, to embrace all my feelings as they come to me. If I carry a grudge it is because feelings I carry are not felt-through and so they need to be honored and maybe, down the road the forgiveness comes, the grudge goes but that is just part of the human thang again.
I think, by my reading of your work, that you are doing quite famously well. I trust you will continue and love yourself and share your feelings, all of them. It breaks my heart to think of how broken we are by religious extremism, how abused and discarded. Your work does not tear down Creation like this but builds it up. So thank-you..... May her butt-crack fade in memory!