Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Warrior: A Tale of Pain & Forgiveness

Last night, I watched the movie Warrior (2011), starring Joel Edgerton, Tom Hardy, and Nick Nolte. Admittedly, I wanted to watch the movie because let's face it, Tom Hardy is a man worth watching; preferably shirtless, sweaty, and staring at me through the screen while...(cough). Okay, I'll stop there. To my male readers: I am not sorry. I am very much a girl.

Okay, okay.

Putting the sweaty, shirtless Tom Hardy aside, what compelled me to write this post was the gut-wrenching, deeply profound, and emotional ending. Suffice to say, it provoked an unquestionable appreciation of our flawed humanness (a term you've heard me use before). The story is a lesson in life, one of hope, one of our capacity to change, and another glaring example of our imperfectness. It is a story of our unfortunate ability to carry the burden of our past until we are so weighted that we lose all hope of a future without being plagued by the torment of our memories; and yet at the same time, the story speaks of our tremendous capacity to forgive despite the suffering that follows us like a grim shadow, unwilling to be separated from us even in the brightest of days.


I love stories of torn families coming together because of a shared hardship. If there's anything that could bring a shattered family together, there's nothing like a defining moment that strips us to very core of our being, leaving us utterly exposed; the truth painted in neon like graffiti behind the lids of our tightly shut eyes.

It's hard to move on, hard to forget the times we've been severely wronged. So much so that forgiveness is a laughable concept. We hang on to the hurt until it becomes a part of us, shaping and defining who we are and who we will forever be. There is no easy answer, no swift remedy that will simply allow us to "let go." But I suppose that's why I liked the ending of the Warrior so much.

It took two brothers to face each other for the first time in years (and in a fighting ring no less), both with equally good and noble reasons to win the fight and to take home the championship. And in the end it is pain, the limitations of the human body that finally causes them to utter the words, "It's okay. I love you": an expression of acceptance, of forgiveness, and a plea for it in return. It is an uttering of a wish to mend a broken relationship, to recreate something new from the ashes of their failures.

Happiness can be defined and can be experienced in so many ways, but there is nothing like the coming together of a family to overcome the very real struggles that exist in our lives and the lives of those we love to give us an unforgettable experience of joy so pure it's like taking your first real breath of life. The bond of a family, whether by blood or by choice, is incomparable. Cherish your loved ones. There isn't much that can happen in our lives that is irrecoverable.

What movies come to mind that are simply unforgettable? I'm always on the hunt for good stories... :)

~Anna






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