Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Love is Not Selfish

Do you know which people I admire most? The ones who want something so badly, but who have the self control to keep themselves from doing it. Respect for others and for themselves. And I think that is one thing the world today would do best to remember - at the end of the day, the world does not just comprise of you and your significant other. Just because you want to do something or feel passionately about something does not make it right to follow through on it. You may very well wish to have an affair, or elope, or hurt someone who has wronged you, but that does not make it all right to do. The people who want something and who know they could have it if they tried, but who realize it is not the right thing to do and don't do it are the people I would trust with anything.

I have four different examples from movies and books on this subject. The only thing I must warn you about is that the whole rest of the post is basically spoilers. So just beware. I'll write it again, just in case you skim this paragraph.

*Spoiler Alert*

via Pinterest

I can't tell you how much I love the last scene of Roman Holiday. Princess Anne and Joe Bradley both know they could forsake their duties and obligations in the name of love, but choose to stay in the places where they are needed. Mr. Bradley has everything that he needs to get back on his feet right in his hands, and he chooses to sacrifice that in order to do the honorable thing and respect the life of another. The last thing the princess wants to do is continue training as the heir to the throne, but she knows that is her role in life and accepts it. They could very well have run off with each other, but it would have been an act of selfishness, and they know it wouldn't have been right.

via Pinterest

In Downton Abbey, John Bates has obstacle after obstacle in trying to get a divorce from his unfaithful wife. His new love, Anna Smith, tells him several times that she would gladly become his mistress if he wanted her to. He says, “I know you, Anna Smith, and I love you, and that is not the right path for you. It won’t be long now.”

via Pinterest

Jane Eyre doesn't know Mr. Rochester has a living wife when she falls in love with him. They are literally standing at the altar, only a few words away from becoming husband and wife, when she learns the truth. He begs her to stay with him, and she could easily have done so; but she follows her conscience and leaves his house, putting the temptation behind her, although her heart is breaking and she has absolutely nowhere to go. Eventually, everything works out for them, and I'm sure they were both glad they waited.

via Pinterest

In The Golden Thread, Uli von der Flue, a Swiss mercenary, falls in love with the girl Juanita, who is accompanying him on his journey. You would think that he would have low morals as he is a mercenary, but instead of taking advantage of her or even letting her know that he is in love with her, he gets her safely to where she needs to go and makes his own way home. She also loves him and can't understand why they can't get married. It turns out that he has a wife back home, and believes he must remain faithful to her, even though she married someone else when she thought he'd died. When she passes away, Uli is able to go back to Juanita with a clear conscience.

I like having examples of these things, because it is a testament to the good parts of human nature. Even though we have to fight against that part of us that says to only think about ourselves, it is still a fight we can win. It can be extremely hard at the time, but when you look back on it later in life, I know you'll be glad that the decision you made was not sinful and selfish.

What do you guys think? Can you think of more examples from literature or movies/shows? Or even history? Have you read/watched the books and shows from my list? Which is your favorite?

- Maddie

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

When Monsters Fall in Love

I wanted to share some writing because I haven't in a while. I wrote this in a coffee shop in a small suburb of London where Mia and I used trusty old Pinterest to find inspiration.

"Monsters fall in love, too."
via Pinterest

We're all touched by things. Funny how even someone with the darkest soul can be affected by beauty, or attached to people or places or pets or posessions. The thing is that most people don't enjoy inflicting pain or doing damage just for the pure sake of it. It's that they grow too attached to the wrong idea or person and don't care who they hurt in the process of trying to hang on to it as long as possible. They think they're doing "good," in a sense: either for themselves or for the people they're trying to keep. And if they do lose the thing that is precious to them, there is the danger of them becoming so hurt and disappointed and angry that they end up trying to express how they feel by attempting to make everyone around them feel the same. We all want everyone to understand how we are feeling and why. So really, it's no surprise that monsters fall in love, too - but rather that love, if sought after improperly or taken too far, can turn people into monsters.

I just realized that in my last post, I didn't really ask how you guys have been. #rude What have you guys been up to? Also, what are some posts you would like to see over the next few weeks? I have recently acquired quite a bit of time, so I will most likely be able to actually post every Tuesday, at least for a while. Let me know in the comments! It's good to be back!

Stay beautiful, guys!

- Maddie

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

The Importance of Friendship

Hey, guys! How is life? I have been super busy and doing exciting things since I last wrote. And by exciting I mean I SPENT TWO WEEKS IN EUROPE WITH MY BEST FRIENDS FOR EASTER BREAK! I still can't quite believe it. It had been a dream of mine to visit Europe, especially with my friends, and I can't get over the fact that I've actually set foot there. I mean like, my body was actually walking around in London. Oh, and don't freak out, but my best friend and I went walking around London on my last day and we went to this market area and it was cool and stuff. And then I watched season 4 of Sherlock a few weeks after I got home, and I noticed that they shot a scene in the same marketplace that we visited! Yeah, I was pretty psyched!

Ahhh, England, I miss you. I miss the tube and the pubs and how still the nights were because not a shop was open. I miss the coffee shops and the parks and galleries and the walks. I miss how everything seemed so sophisticated and when I came back home I realized how rough and rugged home seemed. I miss the accents that made me feel like I was stepping into any audio book ever made or a gothic romance novel. And of course, I miss my friends. The ones I've known for almost half my life, and the new friends I made while I was there. I miss that I can never go back to those moments, but it's okay because I'm happy that I was able to experience them.

Mia, thank you for going into a pub and ordering chips and ice cream with me. Thank you for spending two hours on the first step of our hiking directions because something nobody can accuse us of is having too little determination. Thank you for navigating way better than I could, even though it must have been stressful. Thank you for talking out our feelings with each other without getting into fights. Thank you for waking up at 4 in the morning and literally running through the airport with me so that I could make my plane. Thank you for being the best friend I could ever hope for.

Ellie, thank you for cutting my hair, and for always asking if I was okay. Thank you for  being a holy woman of God and for understanding. Thank you for being my eyes when I literally couldn't see. ;)

via Pinterest

I watched the last season of Sherlock after my trip and, my word, it left me with so many feels. You can see all throughout the show how Sherlock goes from being an arrogant, selfish person with no friends, to having friends but still being selfish, to learning how people work and interact with each other and trying to emulate them. And then finally in the last season, we see how much Sherlock really cares. He is willing to put himself in harm’s way to help the people he loves. Even some of his gestures that would seem rude, are his way of showing care. For example, he tells John and Lestrade that he’s going to take a cab on his own and that they’ll have to catch another one. When they ask him why, he says, “Because I need to think, and I don’t want to hurt you.”
I think a lot of this show is focused on human behavior. No matter how much we may think we are different, we all need relatively the same things. People who try to function on their own, quite frankly, cannot. We fall apart on our own. As much as we want people to think we don’t care that much about them, we do.

I've found that I need people. I don't know how dry and starving I am until I go a long time without conversation and then finally have one again. With someone who really cares about what I'm saying, who doesn't give the impression that I'm talking too much or bothering them. But the time is never enough, and I'm always afraid that if I ask for more, I will be asking them for too much. That it will ruin the good that we had and I will give the impression that I'm clingy. Or that I will find out that they don't care about me as much as I do about them. I think that's one of my biggest fears. Finding out that the attachment or bond I have with someone isn't as strong as I think it is. I'm afraid to move away, to trade the good I have now for something better because it's still a good that I will lose. I don't want people to think that they aren't important to me. But I'm scared that if we move apart they won't think of me at all. My greatest fear is forgetting people and memories, and people forgetting me.

We all need to be needed. We need other people, and we need them to need us. There is no human in history who has ever functioned well without having someone who could understand them, or who they could relate to. It's impossible for us to live isolated lives. But that's what we spend most of our lives saying - "I don't need help." Essentially, we push away what we need. We damage ourselves. That's why you should take all the help you can get and give all the help you can give.

via Pinterest

We’re never going to make it through this life alone. Even Jesus had friends. He had over 12. He didn’t do his ministry on his own. That’s why good Christian fellowship is so important. Have friends who inspire you, who push you, but who will also be there to listen in the times when you fail, or who buy chips and ice cream in a pub with you, or who ask if you're okay, or who make sure you never miss your prayer time. I'm telling you, those kind of people are the best you could hope for.

via Pinterest

- Maddie