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As a mom, let’s face it. We get to see our fair share of various “children’s” movies. Although some of these movies have seriously driven me to the brink of insanity at times, once in a while I come across a diamond in the rough, as it were, that continues to resonate with me. Such was the case with The Incredibles, which is where a lot of my original inspirations behind the “Incredible Elastimom” came from. However, that’s not to say that there are other treasures scattered along the shore of our collective imaginations. That is why a part of my monthly segments will be dedicated to unearthing these treasures found within our children’s favorite movie titles. So let’s go digging and see what we can find, shall we!
My first great treasure was discovered back in 2013 shortly after my husband and I returned home from Disneyland (yes, we did go there without our children, but more on that one later). For our Chili-bean’s 2nd birthday, my husband and I took him to see Monsters University. At the time, when I first saw it, I wasn’t overly impressed by the movie, but my son and my husband loved it. It wasn’t until a little while later after my husband lost his job and started a new career that I started to understand why this movie resonated so strongly with him.
Through the years of watching this movie over and over again, I’ve reached the conclusion that this was one of the best all-time movies Pixar had done up to that point. I’ve decided this is mainly because of one specific scene that still continues to speak to me louder than any other movies have. Embedded in this particular scene is a powerful message that, if you are able to catch it, can really help you understand the reality of our circumstances as mothers and fathers, and as people in general, and how to face that reality with courage. If you haven’t seen this movie, by the way, I would wholeheartedly recommend this movie to you as one of my all-time favorites. So let’s set the stage on this scene, shall we:
So this particular scene occurs toward the end of the movie just moments before Mike and Sully pull off the biggest scare in the history of their university. Mike comes to an untimely crossroads here “in the human world” (aka reality) when he realizes that, despite his fearless attitude, he is just not scary. When his friend Sully tries to empathize with him, he misinterprets Sully’s intentions and gets angry with him. It’s this moment that, for him, ends up defining the rest of his life.
Ok, let’s pause right there. This incredible scene is probably one of the most personal and most powerful scenes for me in any of the Pixar films that have ever been made. Even The Incredibles, which our family absolutely loves, by the way, and have watched over and over doesn’t carry such an inspiring message to me (Sorry, Mrs. Incredible).
You see, I believe this scene is exactly why Pixar waited almost 13 years to produce a sequel (or prequel in this case) to such an awesome movie franchise. This moment encapsulates, almost perfectly, where most of us are presently at in our lives. At this point now, we’ve begun to realize that trying our hardest and doing our best just isn’t enough sometimes to fulfill our dreams or get us to where we want to be in life. Our passion alone, though it may be great, just isn’t enough to beat our circumstances. How often do we get told no or we get told we don’t have the right or necessary experience, or we get told our performance just isn’t quite at the level it needs to be to move up or get hired on. In a word, we get told constantly that we’re just not good enough. The reality of these circumstances hurts and we have so many people telling us “Oh, I know how you feel,” without really listening or even really trying to understand.
In the end, Mike Wazowski is able to realize that just because he can’t be scary doesn’t mean he’s a failure as a monster. And that, I think, is what Disney-Pixar wanted to pass onto us in the best way that they could. You see, just because you may not be where you want to be in life, whether it’s as a mother or as a career-oriented individual, doesn’t mean your experiences up to this point have been worthless. Maybe those experiences are just taking you in a different direction than originally intended. It just seems that sometimes certain people are able to get ahead in life simply because of their family name, or they happen to know the right person, or because they just have this, this… something that you can’t teach. So maybe they do. That doesn’t mean, though, that you should ever give up on yourself because you have so much more to offer that you haven’t even begun to realize yourself. Don’t you get it?! There is nothing wrong with being just ORDINARY YOU!
The fact of the matter is this: it’s not just ok for you to be you. You’re not just ‘ok’. You’re much better than just ‘ok’. You’re INCREDIBLE and don’t let anyone tell you differently!! After all, that is truly what makes us unique. Each of us has something to offer and something unique and special we can teach our children, or our colleagues, or even ourselves. We have a New Year ahead of us which means it’s a renewal of hope and another opportunity to recommit to being better than we were before. I look forward to what this new year may have to offer and I want to express my love and appreciation to each and every one of you for being such a positive influence on me. Now get out there and keep being Incredible!!
I’d love your thoughts! Please feel free to comment and share!
— The Incredible Elasti-mom