St. Vincent - The Art of Nurturing
I hope you all had a happy Mother's Day last weekend. This year Mother's Day had me thinking about what connection and nurturing means. Mother's Day is a beautiful day to give thanks to our mothers and to ourselves. We are mothers of children, friends' children, beloved pets, family, and friends. Mothering and nurturing are a gift to spread to everyone. It is your words to strangers or how you say hi to one another or share a smile. It is the little things you do for family and friends. The unexpected flowers, gifts or cards that arrive sharing care and love. It could be the friend who lends their shoulder when you need to cry or vent. We are all mothers in our own special way. Be thankful and grateful for our own mothers and the mothers we have become. The connection is at the core of being a wonderful nurturer to all you encounter. This verbiage combined with the movie, St Vincent (2014), cemented my thoughts on how important connection and nurturing is in nature and for humanity.
The movie St. Vincent (2014) starring Bill Murray (Vincent), Melissa McCarthy (Maggie), Jaeden Lieberher (Oliver), Naomi Watts (Daka), Chris O'Dowd (Brother Geraghty) and Terrace Howard (Zucko) struck an emotional cord on the significance of family and friendship during our time of overwhelming change. The heartwarming film involves creating a family from your friends, taking care of the ill and sharing yourself with complete strangers while developing meaningful friendships. Bill Murray was nominated for Best Actor in a Leading role. For me, St. Vincent is Murray's best role to date.
The story revolves around Maggie, a struggling single woman who moves to Brooklyn with her 12-year old son Oliver. She works exceptionally long hours trying to make ends meet while leaving her son with Vincent, her neighbor. Vincent is grumpy, selfish (though not), gambler and heavy drinker who enjoys the Lady of the Night, Daka who is pregnant. Do not let these tawdry endeavors fool or alarm you. They are ploys in the plot.
Of course, Maggie does not know all of this but has no other choice than to allow her son to stay with Vincent who is cynical, a horrible housekeeper in a dilapidated house with a hidden big heart. Vincent becomes a mentor for Oliver in a positive way. And Oliver teaches Vincent to learn to love again with their unlikely friendship. Oliver sees the good in Vincent who has spent every dime he has to take care of his wife with Alzheimer's who resides in an upscale retirement home. The movie is emotional, touching and incredibly moving. Of course, witty, funny with a profound message - we are all connected, need connection, and require nurturing.
The final scene in the film is an emotional masterpiece. (See attached video at end of this post) Vincent enjoys the present, where he is at and does not want more in life. He found his family. He found his connection.
There is a Fine Line Between Chaos and Order
Nature Combines Both in Every Situation
The minutes spent dashing from
the nest to the sea are dangerous
in a turtle's life. Ghost crabs tiptoe
across the beach to attack the hatchlings.
Only one in thousands of hatchlings
may survive to maturity.
Connection is the basis of the human condition. In our current situation, the change occurring is rampant, confusing and life altering. People are ill, lives lost, jobs vanishing, incoming withering and what was - is now gone. A new reality will brew from this time of chaos. Rules or rather order are implemented and we the people are following the prescribed regime. Yet, chaos remains a close friend of order and lives right below the surface. Why? Because we are human beings with ambition, life dreams, goals with innate natures urge of taking care of our families by putting food on the table and having a roof over our heads. It is the fundamental needs of humankind that must be met.
As in nature, the needs of all creatures are basic with a constant struggle to thrive. The bees gather and pollinate flowers, creating honey while defending the hive from predators protecting the Queen. Loggerhead turtles leave nests of eggs on the beaches of South Carolina (May - August) return to the sea and never see their babies hatched. The baby turtles when hatching must scratch their way to the surface of the sand and follow the moon's light to the ocean. Only one in thousands might survive the crawl to the ocean and life under the waves. The odds are stacked against them from birth. The light of the moon or houses night lights, crabs and other creatures are waiting for them. If they follow the light of the houses, their plight is grim as with the crabs waiting for a feast as the head towards the ocean. Yet, nature keeps them following the light towards their destiny. Luckily for the baby turtles there are concerned and nurturing citizens (Turtle Teams) who protect and guide the babies safely to the ocean. Chaos and order are the natural order of life and in every situation. It is how we handle both along the way that reflects and builds who you can and will become.
Have you noticed how you feel when you accomplish something of importance? Maybe you designed a garden, built a fence, painted a room, bought a house on your own, etc. The list is endless when you create. When I was in my 30's, I wanted to own a brand new luxury car. I waited, I saved, and I earned it. No one gave me the car or paid for it. My convertible and even a purchasing a town house were accomplishments that I cherished. When you are given something, the effect is not equivalent. Instead there is a desire to receive more, more and more from the person who gave it to you. The result and care of the gift is never the same. Additionally, the increased sense of being self-sufficient and proud is lost and instead dependency on another is accomplished. In the end a disservice to both parties.
It is always wise to save your pennies and purchase what you need or desire when you have the money in hand. Your reward is ten-fold. More importantly, the friendships forged during these years surpassed any material goods owned. We worked together, laughed, and built a world of communication used today together. The friendships are the essence of who we become, how we behave and keep us grounded. Those around you who support your self-sufficiency are your best cheerleaders in your connection circle.
Seek Out Nurturing Vibrations
Your relationships in life teach you to survive, to work hard and to never give up. For instance, my mother's parents, my grandparents, moved to Rhame, North Dakota from Norway. The met in America and married in Rhame. They built a successful business, had nine children, lost everything during the depression, grandfather died and my mother, twelve, and grandmother moved to Tacoma, Washington to start over. The other children were now adults. The two of them had nothing. My mother had to begin again with the nurturing of her sisters and friends to survive and thrive. Once again, to start a new life with new challenges ahead. She was strong, had watched and listened to her parents and knew what it took to overcome any obstacle. There are two ways to look at new beginnings. One, you can sink. Two, you can swim. That is, it. There is no one to bail you out, pay your way or take care of you. You need to do it for yourself. The survival instinct kicks in which is nature's way.
What does this do with connection? Everything. We need others to believe in us, to bolster us up when darkness approaches, to help instill faith that the road will clear, believe in you and that you will be fine. Take one day at a time. One foot in front of another. Do not despair. The path might seem difficult, but the result will be fulfilling if you surround yourself with those who are your advocates. You will become the one out of thousands of Loggerhead turtles that flourishes in natures world.
If you see the movie, St. Vincent, you will be reminded the meaning of having powerful connections with a few select people in your life. These connections will be strong, honest, thoughtful and will fulfill one's spirit and contentment during this time of tremendous change. Be wary of control and order because nature is always knocking at the door. A friend of mine long ago told me this quote, "Control is an infantile illusion." I have never forgotten this quote and think about the meaning often and especially now. The more your seek out order and control of others the more chaos will ring your doorbell.
Life is messy. It is not meant to be fair. And, if it were fair, would be you be content? Would you have true and emotional connection to others? Usually the answer is no. You need people in your life, you need to be able to live your life fully, you need conflict to evolve, you need to be responsible and you need to be accountable for your actions. You are the overseer of your life with your belief system, your connections, and your nurturing to others. Everything else you pine for is folly.
Moreover, during this unique spell in history, those that you text, email, call and keep in contact with will remain by your side for the rest of your life. Put your nurturing skills to the test.
Final Scene in St. Vincent (2014) Bill Murray Singing Bob Dylan Song
As noted, the ending of the movie St. Vincent is poignant and fitting. May you all find your own oasis during our worlds dramatic change. Hopefully, find a spot in your yard, turn on the hose and watch the grass grow with music singing in your ears. This is your life; your time and you are indeed blessed as you shelter from the storm.