Today, I begin to blog.
There are many voices in this world we live in, and I often feel that my voice is just another voice lost in the void of the web. However, I find it appropriate that my epiphanies are often due (at least in part) to my love of movies and what can be said through them, and today's epiphany is no less.
I recently watched two very different films whose messages won't leave my mind. Be forewarned: SPOILERS MAY APPEAR.
If you haven't seen this genetic sci-fi adventure, the plot basically surrounds this average man who is alone within a society of genetically engineered perfect people, including his own brother. His brother and he compete for success and the love of their parents, including swimming races in which the "valid" brother always seemed to win. One day, the "invalid" brother wins, and then leaves to try and make a life of his own instead of living in the shadow of his brother. Confusingly, the invalid brother "steals" the identity of a man who was genetically perfect but lost everything in an accident. He works his way up the ranks of Gattaca, a program that sends perfect people into space, presumably to another planet. Eventually, the invalid is discovered by a detective who you discover is his valid brother, and the two go out for another swimming race. This is where I had my realization. The invalid brother wins yet again, and the valid brother doesn't understand why, until the invalid says "Do you want to know how I won? I never saved enough energy for the swim back."
That message has stuck with me. Never save energy for the return. Always give your everything. It's not your tools or your situation that determines your future: it's what you're going to do with your present. Whenever I feel lazy or apathetic about my life, or when I feel like the circumstances I've been dealt prevent me from moving forward, I remember that. Nothing should stop me. Nothing can stop me.
As Dreamers Do
The next movie is the story of a young Walt Disney before he moved to California. One of my role models, Olan Rogers, was acting as Walt Disney, and so I bought the film to support his work. It was a combination documentary/narrative work, and it basically taught me that no matter what Disney went through during his hard times, he always believed in his talent. He always believed in himself.
These are things that I've been thinking a lot about lately. A lot of performance artists like myself lack the confidence and self-esteem that we so publicly seem to exude. I know I do, and I know many others just like me. Confidence is extremely important to a performer, and I know that. I don't think anyone who knows me would say that I lack confidence, however, I often find myself not really believing in what I'm doing and who I am. I believe that God wants the best for us, but we have to work really hard if we want the best too; he's not just going to give it to us. That doesn't mean we have to work for God's love, it just means that hard work is part of life. The two messages spoken in these movies taught me something very important:
My voice; my identity; my ability; my work; my life is worth believing in and worth putting everything into.
It's rude if I don't. :)