Okay, though I promised this blog will only be shallow and happy, this post will stray from that and offer you a peek into what really goes on in my mind. And, as most of my closest know, my mind hardly dwells on shallow and happy things.
Vince and I watched Revolutionary Road. We wanted to watch this movie before since it stars the marvelous actors Kate Winslet and Leonardo DiCaprio, who, in this film, are both utterly brilliant, magnificent and terrifying in their rawness. I can't believe Brad Pitt got nominated for that CG-heavy flick and Leo didn't even get a nod for this movie! Anyway, we also avoided this film because from the trailer alone, it scared us. But, because we spent the weekend stuck indoors due to me feeling under the weather, we finally watched it.Revolutionary Road is the story of a young couple seemingly leading perfect lives--he's rising in the corporate world, she's a beautiful homemaker, they have lovely children and they live in a large house in a good neighborhood. Perfect. Of course we all know that it isn't perfect--perfection can be a burden and Frank and April Wheeler show us, with frightening honesty, how perfection and conformity can unravel you.
The movie horrified Vince and me because it's too close to home. Everyone thinks we're the perfect couple. I'm telling you now--we're not. Put two moody writers together, one almost an OCD with cleanliness and the other a cluttery creature, both with terrible tempers and you've got two people who are armed and ready to tear each other down. We don't... but we have, regrettably so, and we can, and that threat of destruction hovers over us.
Then there's that pressure to conform. When Vince and I got engaged after eight years, we laughed at how people were not so much as congratulatory as relieved: "Oh, they're normal. They're getting married!" Of course now that we're more than two years married, everyone's impatient for us to have kids and when we tell them we have utterly no plans on procreating, the worry creeps into people's eyes and we can see that they think we're unhinged: How can anyone in their right minds not want to have children?!
Well, as Frank and April laughed about in the movie, "Did you see their faces?! Let them think we're crazy!" Brave words but soon enough, they allow normalcy and societal standards to swallow them up and they are overwhelmed and tragedy ensues.Vince and I don't want to be normal. But it's hard not to follow society's rules and expectations. For example, when Frank and April told their neighbors, the Campbells, they were going to live in Paris, the other couple thought they were insane. Later in their bedroom, Mrs. Campbell collapses in hysterical tears, relieved her husband has no such crazy ideas and petrified that her perfect little suburban paradise--husband, the house, its pretty trappings, the family car all bought with respectable bank loans and rv finance plans, position in society--was threatened by the Wheelers' decision to break from normalcy. People feel that way towards us, and it used to be funny but now it's unsettling.
As most of my family and friends know, Vince and I are unorthodox. But we've grown up, and even we realize that we have to be grown-ups if we are to be taken seriously. Still, we're relieved we have no children yet because we can still be crazy, there's no need for us to be good examples for the next generation. There is so much freedom now. One day, however, the kids will come and then... how do we stay free when our children need structure, how can we tell our children to be good citizens when their parents are troublemakers--a role we revel in?
We know that we have to sacrifice our dreams and adopt the dreams of others (kids, the corporate jobs, the religion, etc) so that people will accept us. And in this world, do we really want to remain outsiders? We understand what society expects. We are asked to "grow up." We have begun to succumb to the demands. Because we also know that in the end, it's not so bad. And yet, the claustrophobia descends.
Sigh. Sorry. Regular programming after this.