I was watching Disney's The Kid today. It's one of those movies
that never goes on sale, so I finally bought it. It really annoys me
that the studio feels the need to include their name in the title.
Just ask them; it's not The Kid; it's
Disney's The Kid
For those who don't know, it's a story about a 40-year-old man who
is rich and successful in his career, but whom everyone thinks is a
jerk. Enter this 8-year-old boy who comes out of nowhere and starts
annoying him, and who voila turns out to be himself as a
child, magically transported through time to (unbeknownst to
either of them) help him change his life and re-become the
wonderful person he was as a child. Or maybe he was a hallucination.
Doesn't matter. Blah, blah, blah, happy ending.
It's a nice movie.
After they both come to the realization that they are the same person,
the kid gets disappointed in how he turned out as a grownup.
You're 40 years old, you're not married, you don't fly jets,
you don't even have a dog! I grew up to be a loser.
That really hit home.
- I'm 40 years old. That, in and of itself, isn't a tragedy.
Happens to everyone, if they're lucky.
- I'm not married. I hate that.
- I don't fly jets. Again, no biggie, but I was an airplane buff
as a kid and for awhile dreamed of flying -- no, not 747s, not
even the time one of the first ones came to San Jose -- private
jets for bigwigs.
- I don't have a dog. I wish I had a dog. I had three dogs while I
was growing up. I would have a dog now, but due to the fact that
I live alone, I hate the idea of buying (or even renting) a house,
and I wouldn't have a dog in an apartment, even if I lived in
one that allowed it, because that's not fair to a dog.
I do often feel like a loser. In the movie, the man decides to change
his life. (It helps that, near the end of the movie, he happens to
see himself from 30 years hence, and sees that he was in fact
successful in it.) I'm about 9 months into my similar journey, minus
the benefits of visits from the future and the magic of Hollywood
One thing I'm doing is seeing a psychotherapist, to find out why I've
been pretty unhappy for most of my life, why I am 95% asocial, why
I only love people that I have no hope of sharing my entire life with
(I don't believe the only part, but it has happened more than
once.) We've spent much time talking about things in my childhood, and
a couple of books that she's given me pretty much come right out and
blame everything bad in a person's life on things that happen in
their childhoods. The books usually only talk about severe, horrible
things like being beaten by your parents, or having an alcoholic,
drug-dealing parent leave when you're ten years old and not seeing them
for twenty years, and seem to imply that this has happened to pretty
much everyone. Joanna doesn't buy that, nor do I, but she does say
that much smaller things that you couldn't necessarily point to and
say "That's why I'm screwed up", but which happened over and
over again when you were a child, all leave their scars and do affect
how you turn out. A bit of this is seen later in the movie, when the
man and The Kid are back in The Kid's time, and we see his father tell
him that it's his fault that his mother is dying.
The man in the movie does go to a psychiatrist, which is a small part
of the story, but it does raise the point of childhood trauma, and this
busy, busy, Type A personality man later takes time off from work and
just has The Kid tell him anything and everything about his childhood
that he doesn't remember. Well, that might be a help. I've remembered
many random things during the last several months, sometimes via
self-hypnosis, sometimes they just pop up during the day.
Unfortunately, none of it seems particularly important, and like the
man listening to The Kid, I don't know what I'm looking for.
This year, I have done some things which represent amazing progress;
sometimes it's more obvious to my friends than to me, because I have
so far to go and it's easy to think more of that than the small start
that I've made. I feel I've been backsliding a bit the last few weeks.
It is so hard, when I find myself fantasizing about a life with
Nolan, to tell myself to put that aside and keep my eye on
Seeing this movie was a good reminder that my life is far from over,
and the life I'm just starting now -- but can't see the ending of
in two hours -- may yet be happy and fulfilling. I just have to