Friday, March 2, 2012

Channeling My Inner Scarlett

I grew up with the movie Gone With The Wind darn near an institution in my house. The tale of a dark and troubled time quite necessary to our country's history, America's ugly fight for freedom from slavery. The movie is puff-pastry layered with the icing of one spit-fire of a heroin and her determination to not let life get her down. Fiddle-de-de! So when I found out Gone With The Wind was masterfully updated and available on blu-ray I was elated! I saw this as an awesome opportunity to experience Tera as she hadn't been seen before; bright, vivid, crisp and clear. My husband had never seen this movie so we sat down last weekend to watch the epic adventure unfold in all its glory. I was enraptured, romanced, taken back to another time. Not only by what was unfolding on the rich and descriptively detailed screen in front of me but also the memories the impact this film had on my youth, shaped the culture I was raised in. And my husband hated it.

"This is racist!" he proclaimed. "No shit!" I said. "What a spoiled brat, I don't get her motivation. Am I supposed to feel sorry for her or something?" he said. I smiled. This was the man that hated On The Road, not empathizing or identifying with the self-indulgent beatnik movement walking away from responsibility to simply live and experience the passions of being. My husband has worked very hard to keep our heads above water, stuffed his own dreams and desires deep down to forge ahead into pure survival, been a loyal and true husband to a very sick wife. I just laughed and told him he was missing the whole point of the movie. A woman who would not be beat down by the harshness of a world she was ill-prepared to face, who did what had to be done to keep herself and those she loved going. Although she compromised morals, ethics, integrity and honor many times over, she survived. No, actually, she thrived!

"I'm not going to think about this today. I will think about it tomorrow. After all, tomorrow is another day!" Scarlett O'Hara's famed mantra is well suited to this Fibromyalgia patient. I cannot count the times I have crumpled into a frustrated lump of exhaustion, finally giving in to the pain and fatigue shock waving through my body. Nothing which so desperately needed to be accomplished was. Laundry, bills, dishes, housework, all these things I used to do in my spare time after working 50 hours a week and enjoying an active social life. Things I can now hardly keep up with despite not working outside my home or having anything close to resembling a social life. But these things keep piling up, causing more anguish and sorrow simply by still needing my attention. Unfortunately there is always going to be more to get done than time, energy or motivation to do it with. Frequently expectations will come we simply cannot meet, self-imposed or otherwise. We can beat ourselves up with failure, disappointment and frustration or we can decide to look at those few things that do get done as amazing, with pride! If the bed gets made, enjoy the way it looks for that one day, for it may not happen again for a while. If the dishes get washed, go out of your way to meander through the kitchen and notice how clean and pretty it looks. It could be weeks until you see it that way again. If the laundry gets sorted, washed, dried, folded and put away all in the same day stick gold star on your forehead and scream from the rooftops, because you sure as hell deserve it! And don’t forget our sister Scarlett, what an inspiration she can be to us all. For she truly had her priorities right. After all, tomorrow is another day.

Thanks for joining,

This blog was originally published on 8/28/10.


  1. Gone With the Wind is my all time favorite book. I've read it dozens of times and of course I have the movie. I just love Scarlett's strength and practicality in the face of her complete culture collapse.

    And her mantra is a good one. When we can't accomplish what we want to today, there is always tomorrow.


  2. I just want to say, I love your spunk and how your heart and soul jumps out at every one of us, who struggle daily with this dreaded illness...Thank you for using your experience to bring light, love, validation and insight to so helps so much to hear others go through the same 'misery'

  3. I have always loved Gone with the Wind and admired Scarlett's perseverance through the toughest time in our history, especially since she was a woman. She was discounted so many times because of that and I am glad you saw her strength too!

  4. My maternal great-grandmother was born a slave in 1856. She lived long enough to hold me in 1956 (& then some.) GWTW has been one of my favorite books since I read it for the 1st time at 12yo. My mother prepared me well for both the book & the movie & Scarlett has been almost as real to me as my sisters. I'll always love her... flawed, beautiful & human.