January, the start of 2017 a new year, a new digit 2 0 1 7. I shared what I did over Christmas in a holy day in December and how I brought in New Year’s Eve at a Buddhist Centre. Though now I would like to share that while there have been celebrations there has also been commiserations, that is a break up because it’s broken. While I have been dealing with everything well, I naturally go into automatic ‘keep going’ survival mode pretty much anytime something big happens. While this is good in a way, I know that I need to give myself a moment to pause, to grieve, to remember and to just be.
I do this a lot in yoga, it also helps me breathe strongly and fluidly, I focus on truth and calmly tune into the quiet. However I haven’t been able to release much, even a Gong Bath, as beautiful as it was did not flow any tears. I know they’re there waiting to roll, I am not made of stone, I used to be a really emotional being.
What’s one thing that has made sure I relax and release this month – movies!
Quietly sitting on my own engrossed in a story has worked its subtle magic on me. It started after I got back from my solo spontaneous trip to Birmingham, I finished reading Me before you by Jojo Moyes and then watched the movie based on the book on itunes, they have a 99p range I browse often, (the book is a lot more indepth and empowering than the film, worth a read). The story of a girl from a small town who forms an unlikely bond with a recently paralyzed man she’s taking care of is a quick outline of the book making it a sweet, funny and sad drama and romance.
I was onto something and signed up for a free trial on Netflix and cancelled it before it was up. Though I knew I was onto a good thing, there’s only so much ice cream a girl can eat after a break up before self love becomes self loathing. It’s very easy to open my laptop and be entertained, escapism from time to time is fine. However opening up to watch movies and doing creative tasks does not work, it just makes me slower. Art wins each time as does getting out of my box room and actually watching a movie in town.
“It’s an odd thing to think about, but try imagining that your breakup is a disease. If you were told that you had a serious yet curable disease, would you go get hammered on a regular basis? Eat two bags of Oreos? Chain-smoke, pop, pills, get stoned, or fuck around? NO YOU WOULDN’T. You would take great care of yourself and cut all the unhealthy things out of your life. Because you love yourself, and even if you don’t right now, WE DO. So put the (insert vice here) and start moving on.”
― Greg Behrendt, It’s Called a Breakup Because It’s Broken: The Smart Girl’s Break-Up Buddy
The second movie up was Eddie the Eagle, a true story of Eddie Edwards the underdog British Ski jumper who charmed the world and became champion at the 1998 Olympics. His story went through things that I use in life – visulisations, affirmations and self belief. He overcame ordinary but large obstacles of people not understanding and ‘real life’ coming up at every turn. Throughout the movie more obstacles show up and he gets through all of them with an unfaltering spirit, determination with practice at his skill and courage of will.
Though January was also a month of next to no money, I had some vouchers to use. I used the first to see A monster calls, an amazing story of a boy who seeks the help of a tree to cope with his mum’s terminal illness – and then some! It’s original, it’s based on folk tales and fairytales and there are so many great quotes. Such as this gem:
‘Stories are important, the monster said. They can be more important than anything. If they carry the truth’
I watched Run away bride also, it didnt make me well up but it was a story themed on break ups, love, vulnerability and doing what feels right in your own way not at the expectations of others. The ex wife of the man who marries Julia Robert’s character gave me a kind of fictional encouragement I wanted.
The last film I watched on Netflix was Learning to drive, I’m not sure why this made me release tears of grace but this romantic comedy about a writer who’s marriage falls apart takes driving lessons with a Sikh instructor who is also having marriage problems and together they help each other. It brought up a few things for me 1. I was truly blessed with my driving instructor, like the character I really struggled with learning to drive. 2. I am really drawn to the Sikh way of life and am learning through Kundalini Yoga and go to the nearby Gurdwara usually twice a month. So it brought up happy feelings seeing one in a movie.
The final movie of the month was Moana, a sweet story about a girl answering the call of the ocean to seek out a Demigod, release the curse set upon her island home and set things right. This story, by Disney is so much more than a film just for children and young girls – it’s female empowerment on the big screen!
Movies are an excellent way to be entertained and escape from life for an hour or two, they can speak to something in you that you may not be able to actually put into words. Stories can contain snippets of wisdom, inspire us and are relateable way where we may feel both understood and empowered.
What is next for the months ahead? As I mentioned previously, I will continue to watch movies in my leisure but creativity, art, writing are to take the front seat and drive!