September 20, 2010

Forward motion

Have you we are intrepid. we carry on.ever seen the movie "Elizabethtown"? There does not seem to be a middle ground with this movie, the people who see it either totally hate it or totally love it.

Personally, I'm in the latter group. My friends and I were completely obsessed with this movie in college, and my friend Jill and I dreamed of graduating college and starting a bakery/bookstore called 60b, a nod to the film. 60b was our dream, our sanity - it was a renewal of hope for the future. Actually planning and carrying out this endeavor wasn't the point - we needed something to look forward to that wasn't college, which was reaching its end and had lost the initial appeal it has when you're fresh out of high school and ready to be an adult.

In the end, I not only chose to go to grad school, but I chose one nine hundred miles away from where I went to college. Jill kept working at the part-time job she had kept through most of college, and eventually she saved up money for a fancy digital SLR camera and some fancy equipment. She now has her own photography business, and with little surprise, it's called 60b Photography.

Sometimes I get really sad that I'm not a part of her wonderful creative work, and I get really upset that I chose Chicago and grad school over small town Connecticut and being able to do things with my friends more often than twice a year. But then I come back to what started it all - "Elizabethtown" - and I feel reaffirmed.

In the movie, the main character Drew's father dies (not a spoiler) while visiting his extended family in Elizabethtown, KY, and Drew has to go on behalf of his family to collect his father's ashes. There is an awful lot more going on in Drew's personal and work life, so he is very emotionally numb for the better part of his trip. His mother, Hollie, is dealing with the loss of her husband of many years, and she does it by keeping busy, by trying to learn how to cook, how to fix the car, how to tap dance:

Drew: Mom, I think you need to slow down.
Hollie: Look, everybody tells me that I should take sedatives, but hey, I am out here, and I'm making things happen. All forward motion counts.

i love you. this is for you. your favorite song on a saturday night.
I think out of all the memorable quotes from the movie, "all forward motion counts" is definitely my favorite. I can't even begin to imagine how the character must have felt, losing someone she had loved for so long, but the idea is still powerful and applicable in so many areas of life. For example, when I get upset that I chose Chicago over Connecticut, I remember that before coming here, I didn't feel like I had a real direction career-wise. But here, I found out that I love teaching, that I'm great at it, and that I would love to do it for the rest of my life. I've really matured since coming to Chicago - living on my own has forced me to grow up a lot - and despite missing my friends and family, I feel like the steps I've taken have been in the right direction. At the end of the day, I have no real regrets about relocating.

I want to keep this in mind with my weight loss as well. Things are going really well right now, and I've maintained great losses every week. But in the future if things slow down (or even temporarily stop), I want to be able to still feel amazing about where I am right now. As long as I am trying my hardest to eat well and be active, then I am doing the best I can do. A week where I haven't lost anything is still a week where I haven't gained anything! The numbers on the scale are truly secondary - no matter what the number is, I feel amazing every day because every day I work out and I nourish my body with water and healthy food, and that's an awful lot more than I could say even just two months ago. Even when my numbers stand still, I'm still making every effort to keep moving forward - and all forward motion counts.


Jessica said...

This is a wonderful post! And I needed it! Thanks!

Anonymous said...

I loved Elizabethtown! Kirsten Dunst is great in this movie. The Chuck and Cindy wedding stuff was hilarious. Good movie all around. I got it from Netflix about 5 months ago and watched it and I ended up buying it when it was on sale. Love the movie.

Great post btw.