Whether it is a parent, grandparent, aunt, uncle, or father figure, our fantastical and idealistic notions elevate them from mere mortal to something entirely different. We let them take on the role of superhuman and superheroes. They become figures in our lives who are incapable of mistakes and bad choices.
There is that moment in our life where the expectations, ideals, and fantasies that we have created for them, collide together and come crashing down on top of us. The person we love, respect, and honor with every fiber of our being, betrays us with their imperfections.
Whether it is a father figure who doesn’t follow through with their promise, an aunt who has an affair, an uncle who cracks open our piggy bank, or a mom who goes back on her word, it is a moment that redefines the way we view them and the way we view the world. We feel the devastation of their decisions. We take it personally and we hold it against them. We can let that one defining moment change the way we interact with others, cloud our judgment, or affect who we trust.
Out of all of the movies I have seen over the years, Crash is still the one movie that has had the most impact on my life. In most movies, we have good and bad characters. They remain that way from beginning to end. In Crash, the question of who is good and who is bad is blurred throughout the movie. Characters teeter on that line, fall over, and then jump over to the other side. It is a movie that shows that bad people do good things and good people do bad things. So much so, that there is no clear line that delineates who falls in what category We are all a combination of our choices, good and bad.
Life is full of disappointments. It is also full of people who make bad decisions. But it is also full of beautiful words, phrases, moments, and memories. School teachers, doctors, lawyers, construction workers, students, and even parents and family members…..all of us have made decisions that we regret. We are all imperfect. Everything and everyone has beautiful and dark moments. A blue, cloudless sky can become a hurricane. A spring breeze can become a tornado. An autumn tree with red, yellow, orange and green colors, can eventually be stripped of everything but it’s bark. Fathers can disappoint you, uncles can steal, aunts can cheat and mothers can lie. But we shouldn’t completely write them off because of it.
The people we love can’t be perfect all of the time. We have to learn how to eat the fish and leave the bones. In other words, we don’t throw out the entire meal because we have come across a “bone”. Instead, we take the lessons and knowledge that we need from the people we care about, and leave everything else on the plate. The people we love will sometimes disappoint us, as we will disappoint them. Everyone is a character in Crash and the sooner we embrace that, the easier disappointment becomes for us to understand and handle.