Monday, November 1, 2010
I Am Odie's "Sensei"
We spent Halloween evening watching a terrific movie reminiscent of "Rocky" (but minus all the sweat and saliva). It was Karate Kid, with Jackie Chan and Jaden Smith (Will Smith's son). Young Master Smith is adorable, with tremendous spunk and energy, and the story is great. This is a PG movie for the family, but with a serious, very adult, message: "When life knocks you down you can choose whether to get back up or not."
I love that message, having had a few knock down experiences myself.
Psychology teaches that, when a traumatic event is experienced, people react in one of the following ways:
Some are devastated by the experience and never recover. No matter how much time has passed, they continue to experience pain and regret as if the trauma had just happened. The result is that their lives are less satisfying and less secure than they were before the event.
Others, after a period of disruption, eventually regain their balance and remain the same as they were before. The event is buried and mostly forgotten, and does not directly relate to their lives today.
The last group are able to work through their pain and emerge with strength and a positive attitude. They make life changes which lead to greater happiness, good works, and forgiveness, turning lemons into lemonade, so to speak.
Why a person reacts to life's "knock downs" in one way or another is often a mystery, but I believe that seeking the support of others, and being honest with ourselves, are key to surviving and thriving throughout life.
Now, I tried to explain all this to Odie, since there's no one else here to listen to my words of wisdom, and I think Odie liked the lesson. As I spoke, he looked at me with great respect. Really!
I'm telling you, that look had nothing to do with the fact that I was sitting next to the treat jar!