Thursday, June 10, 2010

"why can't you wear black shoes like the other mothers?"

One of my most favourite movies of all time is Chocolat. As if the wonderful story, perfect character depictions, catchy musical score and vibrant color schemes were not enough, the movie touches me on a more personal level. Like Anuk in the movie, I was raised by a single mother; a very attractive, educated, successful, and slightly eccentric mother. Oh sure, the families from our town and from the private school I attended were nice enough, but I never felt like we completely belonged.
My own situation as a mama is similar and different at the same time. While I am so grateful to have a wonderful mister in my life, it seems that some of my mother's eccentric nature {along with hopefully a bit of her attractiveness and smarts} have rubbed off on me as well. Back nearly five years ago, as a new mama moving in to a small town {very much like the one I grew up in}, I did almost everything I could to fit in with the townsfolk. Part of me thought that if everyone liked me, that would some how make life easier for my kiddos? In reality, my living as a dilluted version of myself only brought me in contact with other watery individuals; my theory was confounded.

As I sat watching Chocolat the other evening, I wondered to myself if there would be a day when my little one's would wish that John and I were more like everyone else? The scientist in me wonderd what a study would reveal about what our life would be like if we did not have "body art", or if I did not wear red shoes, lipstick or curl my hair for no reason at all? Will my children wish for me to be chatting among the groups of more similar looking women at the school pick up? Will they, like Anuk, question why I can't just wear "black shoes" like the other mothers?
With all of my being, I feel my mother is just the most wonderful of all people, however my later queries partially stem from a time in my childhood when I wished my mother would have "worn black shoes". I would not have understood back then, but from experience I know that being yourself is the best way to find the people who are meant to be in your life. In an ideal world, I would like to be friends with everyone; and would love for everyone I meet to like me too. Instead, I'm sure there are some people who won't talk to me, others that probably talk behind my back, but still others who are wonderful and whom I consider to be freinds.
Yes, this post has a very happy conclusion. Like in the movie, amidst the most unusual of characters, we have made a home, a life, and a rather eclectic group of friends. The best way to find true friendship is by being true to who you really are. Anuk and I came to realize this; Vienne and my mother always knew it.

Is there any wonder that this movie always makes me cry a bit?


  1. I have major love for this movie too...but mainly cuz I LOVE gypsies and food witchery and have always been on the fringe of social norm. Never REALLY out there, never ever in. That's a good one to see again- I will see if it's On Demand! :-)

  2. I adore your red shoes and your pin-up hair, your fabulous and funky clothes and every single tatoo that speaks to something important to you. I adore the inspiration you give me every day in person and on your blog.

  3. I agree- who wants to wear black shoes! Red is sooo much more fun!!! That movie is one of my all time favorites- I own the score as well. This movie comforts me, and inspires me to strive to be my own person- no matter what the obstacle. There is always going to be someone who sees things differently, and thats ok:)

    Hmm I might wear red shoes today...xoxo


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