Lessons, Love and Laughter

Personal Experiences, Real Issues

girls trip

 

I recently went to the movies with my friends to see “Girls Trip”. And I must say, it was amazing! You know those laughs where you slap your thighs and the little tears come? Yeah, I had some of those. But apart from the laughter it brought, this great production sure helped me to reflect.

Having attended an all-girls high school, the bond shared between the actresses, Ryan (Regina Hall), Sasha (Queen Latifah), Lisa (Jada Pinkett-Smith) and Dina (Tiffany Haddish) was all too familiar. I could easily recall lunch times in sixth form full of “gimmicks” and the sharing of food and speaking of the future ahead of us among other things. We had our quarrels and little fights just like any other group but we always found ways to resolve them.

Now being in university, being away from those girls, I realize I took many of those moments for granted and I do wish I could go back in time and even record them just to have something to watch in my times of missing my girls.

We have all taken different paths and are in different places. But one thing is for sure, just like the girls in the movie, one day, we will be reunited with a million and one stories to tell.

Apart from reflecting on my moments with my girls, the movie taught or better yet reminded me of some lessons, which I want to share with you:

  1. You don’t always have to have it all togetherIn the movie, Ryan Pierce (Regina Hall) promoted the idea of “having it all”, which made me smile because this is a concept that I embrace. However, it got to a point where in order to have it all, or to appear to, she chose to sacrifice her self-worth and accept less than she deserved from her unfaithful husband, so as not to, in her head, “disappoint” people who looked up to her and admired her life. Life is full of obstacles and setbacks. It isn’t perfect. Some things will be out of your control. There are things that you will not be able to fix/repair. Let go off those things. Don’t sacrifice your sanity to promote perfection and bliss.
  2. The best way to inspire is to be your true, authentic selfBelieve it or not, you don’t need airs or a look of perfection to inspire people. When Ryan finally spoke out and showed her supporters her reality, her moments of vulnerability and weakness, they were inspired by her strength to be brave and say it as it was. To say that her life was not perfect but she was doing the best she could. And that reminds me of one of my favourite quotes, “there’s no need to be perfect to inspire others. Let people be inspired by how you deal with your imperfections.”
  3. Keep friends who will call you out on your bsThis is self-explanatory. Don’t keep friends who see you on a path to self-destruction and allow you to go on full speed ahead. Have friends who will let you know straight up that what you are doing with your life is crazy and is not the best thing for you. You need to have people around you who will tell you to your face that you’ve made a big mistake or that you’re making bad moves. And even greater, keep friends who will try their best to help you to fix whatever bad situation you got caught up in. Those are true friends.

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4. Remember to check up on that “strong friend” of yoursIn our friend groups, we all have that “strong friend”. You know that friend who seems to have it all together, who seems to always be on point with his/her life, knows what he/she wants, works hard, and is successful at most things he/she does? The friend that most people turn to when they have problems, or they need support or good advice? Yeah that friend. Often times in our friendships, we are so focused on focusing on our own issues that we forget that maybe, just maybe that strong friend needs a shoulder to cry on or advice themselves. That strong friend will probably not say it outright that life is going haywire. And I can say from experience that maybe that strong friend is the way he/she is because during their lifetime, no one ever reached out to them or showed them that there was someone walking with them so over time, they just grew to depend on themselves, fight their own battles and be very independent. But even the strongest soldier gets tired. Show your strong friend that you got his/her back and you’re in this thing called life together. Ryan, had it not been for her friends, would have probably had a greater meltdown than she did. Don’t forget to check on your strong friend.

5. Don’t settle in your relationshipsDon’t ever settle for something just because it looks good. If it doesn’t feel right, then it isn’t right. Ryan’s relationship with her husband looked great in the public’s eye but behind closed doors, there were way too many arguments and tears. Don’t be afraid to walk away from someone who isn’t treating you as you deserve to be treated. Don’t be afraid to walk away from someone who hurts you over and over and comes back apologizing, promising to be better but never actually changes. Avoid being in relationships with manipulative individuals; those people who mess with your mind and guilt-trip you all the time when really the fault is not with you but with them. You don’t need that in your life.

And I am sure there are even more lessons which could be taken from this movie. Finally, I’ll say, cherish the moments you spend with your friends. This life is short. At the end of the day, your happiness will not be found in your loaded bank accounts, or your many cars, flashy clothes and fame but those great moments you spend with your tribe, those people who just get you and love you for you. No add-ons, nothing extra, just plain you. Treasure those moments and treasure those people. Life is good when you have good friends.

4 thoughts on “Lessons, Love and Laughter

  1. Girl I didn’t have the friends to watch the movie with but I was like what the heck I’ll go by myself and I felt awkward at first when I saw ladies rolling in with their friends but I shock it off and decided to enjoy the movie nonetheless. And Girl did I enjoy it.
    One of my issues is that I have endured a lady who literally threatened my life when I was living in BC and I knew I would end up in jail if I had confronted her at the time. Luckily, the good Lord saw it fit for us to get another work opportunity and we took it and moved away. Deep sigh of relief.
    Years later I found that it affected me far worst than I initially thought. It’s hard to make friends here especially when you are in the minority and I don’t’ have to tell you of the “subtle” racism that we endure and boy is it tiring. So I guess i just stopped trying as I thought less drama. But we were not created to live life alone and so I maintain my friendships back home and still chat with my two girls from high school. I’m here, one is in England and the other in the States in the army. We text and video chat everyday but nothing replaces the physical being.
    As a woman married with one child I still get the “when will you have another child?’ The constant pressure to conform and fit the mold that some family, friends and people in general place on each other is one of the reasons why we feel the need to be perfect and conform to please everyone.
    People refuse to understand that sometimes it’s best to allow someone to find their own paths in life and that they don’t need the constant pressure of always nagging someone to do things just to please the other person.
    My child coming into this world came with a whole lot of fanfare. A plane ride and three hospitals later she came into the world almost 2 months before her time. Weeks later when she put on sufficient weight and was doing way better than other babies in ICU they decided it was time to send her home. After that I had to send my child unattended by me on an airplane as there was no “space” for me. So I had to take the greyhound and travel for 12 long hours back to another hospital where I stayed for a few more days then was sent home. I don’t tell people my story as not everyone is fit to be told. But that alone has caused me to say I have one and I’m good with that. I can put myself through experience again but I can say I have grown and you do need the support in your life and this movie was a perfect depiction of how resilient we as women are and you don’t need to please anyone but yourself.
    I said all of that to say that people in general will always talk and while it will affect how you see things it should not be your deciding factor and what you do with your life. Everyone needs a good support system but if you don’t have the physical don’t forget that there are other mediums to help keep you in contact with the people who love and care for you.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Roxanne, you have such an amazing story! It’s true that you should never judge a book by its cover because in spite of all this hardship and all the obstacles, you stand resilient and undaunted, holding your own and taking the best out of life! It is truly admirable! Your statement is made entirely of PURE FACTS! Only you should determine the life you live and the actions you take. You cannot allow people to dictate your moves or dictate to you the person you should be! There are many negative people who will try to tear down what you build but thankfully as you said, there are also great people we can share bonds with that transcend geographical borders and will always hold dear to our heart!

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  2. Wow! This is so cool! I saw the movie with my mommy and aunties and that was great, but I do wish I could see it again with my girls. 🙂 I love what you wrote here, especially #1 and #3- they resonate the most with me right now. I love the thought that you put into this post and encourage you to keep going! Thank you! – Sarahn

    Liked by 1 person

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