I have loved movies for as long as I can remember. I don’t know when the day came that I realized that they were more to me than just simply entertainment, but they are my favorite form of art. They speak realities about life. And they take me to a place that’s deep inside myself. That’s what art does. It opens our hearts and brings our emotions out into the light where we can experience them deeply.
Obviously, not all emotions are exactly pleasant, but I can honestly say that I have appreciated on some level every deep emotion I have ever felt in my life. Some are appreciated more when they are in the past.
I recently watched a movie called “If I Stay.” It’s a hard movie to watch, especially for someone who has lost someone close. I can’t say that it’s for everyone, but it was definitely for me. If my ratings for a movie are based on how much I cry, this one fared pretty well.
It’s about a high school girl, Mia, who is in a coma and on the verge of dying. We experience most of her life via flashbacks, as she both falls in love with a guy and chases her dream of playing the cello.
I cried most of the way through the movie. I’ve always said I was a sap because of how I cry while watching movies. What it comes down to is that I find it easy to relate to the characters portrayed on scene, whether it’s happiness, laughter or tears. And I’d like to think that’s how I relate to real people in my life, wanting to experience life through their eyes, so that I can “mourn with those who mourn, and rejoice with those who rejoice.”
There’s no shortage of scenes in the movie that I recognize from my own life. There is an endless line of people trotting in to her room to see her laying there. I can remember that scene with Stephanie so vividly, as if my own life plays before me like a movie. The wealth of love for Stephanie and for me was (and is) incredible. The waiting room was often filled with people. Praying for me. Holding me. Loving me. Hurting for me.
One of the characters in the movie chooses to let Mia go; to let her die. And I get that. There’s an amazing peace — I believe that only can come from God — that gives you the strength to say, “Okay. It’s time.” I’m comforted by that constantly. I never look back wondering if we shouldn’t have pulled the plug. I have never regretted it, painful as it was.
And movies like this remind me of those emotions. It reminds me of the pain which proves I’m still alive. And being alive means I get to experience all that God has for me in this life. And for that, I’m thankful. (I also get to watch more movies. So that’s a bonus, too.) It might sound crazy, but I love the reminder of how deeply I can feel — and have felt.