I have recently fallen in love with the television show “This Is Us”. I’m a sucker for a family drama (“Parenthood” anyone?). I was watching it last week and started to think about our life, our family and our ’us’. As an audience, we watch different movies or series and we get incredibly involved. We love the characters and we feel for them. We cry for them and we want to know what happens to them. We want to be a part of these fictional characters and their journey. I think what we forget sometimes is that there are real people in this world living out these emotional, painful and traumatic journey in real time. They can’t reach the end of an episode and turn it off. Nobody expects his or her life to turn sideways – it happens to other people right? But sometimes it happens – it happened to us.
I wonder what parts of our life would be showcased to bring out emotions in people in the name of entertainment. Would people laugh at my silly children as we tried to stay entertained on, what started as, a mundane sick day in March? Would they gasp when I fell hours later? Cry while my sweet boys screamed for their mama? What about the phone call to Mexico to summon my in-laws home – how would that play out? Would they fall in love with the man that my husband is and root for our marriage? What parts of this journey from hell we have found ourselves on would have entertainment value? What parts would be skipped over and considered ‘unimportant’?
I replay our story in my head daily and I only wish I could skip over what I wanted. I wish I didn’t have such a vivid memory of every moment. I wish it didn’t run in my head like a movie I’ve seen too many times. I wish it were an episode on a television series – I would laugh; I would gasp; I would cry and fall in love. And when it was over, I would turn it off and go back to my ordinary life. I wish it wasn’t really, the story of ‘us’.