In 1977, I was a young woman whose firstborn was still new born and whose husband was deployed to the Philippine Islands. While Jerry was overseas, my baby and I flew to Florida to spend time with our family. That was when I went to see this new space movie getting a lot of attention, a movie they called: Star Wars.
From the opening moments, I was hooked.
- Instead of a futuristic flick, it was “a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away.”
- Instead of a story with a beginning and an end, this was Episode IV, clearly a tale with much more yet to tell.
- The good-guy aviators wore flight helmets that were scuffed and scarred; they obviously had seen hundreds of flight hours – much like my Navy husband.
- There was a bar scene with aviators telling sea stories with hand motions – much like every gathering we Navy wives had ever attended.
- Unlike so many other plot lines of the day, there was a strong, outspoken woman giving orders and strong, brave men following her lead.
- Like so many other plot lines, there were sidekicks – but Oh. My. Goodness! such sidekicks!
- And like every classic story every society has ever told – there was evil. And there was good.
As I watched Episode IX, I wept.
The storytelling (as usual) is wild and free, with hyperspace leaps in logic and reality that only made us chuckle and enjoy the tale more. The story itself is rewarding, with multiple reunions and a satisfying conclusion. The characters are old friends who have remained faithful and true – to the cause and to one another.
I wept not just because this is the end of the saga – but because every good story tells us something true about our own stories.
I think about that young woman, a proud Navy wife, a brand new mother – sometimes it feels like she lived a long time ago in a galaxy far away.
I think about a long ago world where good and evil seemed clearer. More distinct. More discernable.
I think about the havoc Empires have been wreaking on peoples throughout human history and the damage this current wanna-be-emperor is causing within this nation I love.
And still I hold onto hope. Another new hope.
All the classic stories tell us that good overcomes evil. That hope can endure. That #Resistance and #Persistence are the very heart of every battle. That sacrificial love is stronger and larger than life.
I was almost 27 when I saw that first movie. That was 42 years ago (do the math.)
- In spite of what I have seen in my years, I hold onto another new hope because I see new generations of #Resisters rising up all around the world.
- In spite of what appears to be powerful, I recognize that Real Power is at work: the irrepressible power of truth and justice, of love and courage.
- In spite of apparently overwhelming odds, I understand there are more of “us” than there are of “them.”
I want to be Leia when I grow up: steady, strong and sturdy in my optimism. I want to keep believing in redemption. I want to know that my life has counted for something. And I want to pass on another new hope to the next generation.
May the Force be with all of us #Resisters and #Persisters.