Scary. Heartfelt. Emotional. Dark. I have heard so many words used to describe the movie Brave, with Disney’s newest spunky and redheaded Princess Merida.
Principessa’s rendition of Brave.
And yes, admittedly, my own Principessa was scared at various moments of the movie…but beyond that, this movie is so much more. Watching Brave screamed of the fragility and significance of mother daughter relationships. The relationship between Merida and her mother the queen was one that I know well, and the themes of wanting someone to be perfect are ones that remind me of why Just.Be.Enough. is so important.
I will confess, that as I watched the movie I thought about my own relationship with my mom and then the relationship I have with Principessa. As I have grown and become a mother myself I have a new perspective on the difficulty of the mother daughter dynamic especially when the mother and daughter have the same (we’ll call it “stubborn and strong willed”) personality.
The truth is that my mom always encouraged me to reach for my dreams. But…(you knew there was a but right?) sometimes it felt like I was never good enough for her as far as my appearance. I know now that these were my own issues of self esteem (or lack there of) and that blaming my mom for having caused those issues is a gross simplification of reality. I also know that like Merida, my pride often got in the way (it may still) of real communication when our strong willed personalities butted up against one another.
As I listened to Principessa retell the story of Brave over dinner last night, I know that as a mom to a feisty and spunky daughter of my own, I face the daunting task of balancing being supportive of her dreams and trying to help guide her based on my own experiences in life. Merida and her mother share a strong love, but Brave showed us that communication and flexibility are the keys to an even stronger bond.
Watching the Disney/Pixar movie Brave on the first full day of summer vacation with my daughter is a powerful symbol that I hope will help guide us into a summer of
a whole LOT of time together, of laughter, love, and relationship building. It probably does not hurt to keep the message of the movie in the back of my head as we prepare to spend over three weeks in close quarters with my own mom (who, I should be clear, I adore—but um….one shared bathroom…lots of time in a car….have I mentioned that we have stubborn and strong willed tendencies?) Maybe I should check to see if the Brave soundtrack is on itunes so that when times are tough, the musical reminder of Merida and her mom can help refocus (and distract) us.
(Also? All the people that encouraged me to go see the movie despite the beautiful sun that was out, and my mounting pile of to do items to prepare for our upcoming trip to Italy…those people that suggested I bring tissues…they were not kidding. Yes it can be a touch scary…but this is a not to miss movie!)