Sunday, August 14, 2011
“You is kind, you is smart, you is important.”
I read The Help last summer. It was amazing. I watched the movie today, and I am in awe.
I don't really want to get into a full review of the movie or the book, but I feel the need to get it out there that this is one hell of a story that I think everyone should experience.
After reading the book I remember experiencing deep admiration for a gutsy story like this to be told. Kathryn Stockett showed us what life was like for “the help” in the 1960's in the Deep South. It was filled with humiliation, injustice, strength and enormous amounts of courage to survive. I was inspired and informed; changed, really.
Today, as I sat in the movie theater I was in awe how these women who had begun to change my life last summer, were doing it again. I am always a bit leery of a book becoming a movie and it being “ruined” by Hollywood, but today I was moved in a way that took me by surprise.
From beginning to end, I was on a rollercoaster of chuckles, hearty laughter, small tears, big tears, and an occasional gasp. This movie brought back all the women I loved so much in the book. And now, just as when I finished reading The Help, I’m left with a lasting heartwarming glow. I also left wanting to continue to learn from them about the courage it takes to speak truth.
I think the highlight for me, the miracle I saw today, were the words of one of the main characters, Abileen, and what she says to her girl Mae Mobley. She says, “You is kind, you is smart, you is important.” Every time it was said, tears instantly streamed down my cheeks.
Despite the circumstances for Abileen, she knew that these simple words could influence Mae Mobley to be stronger than her surroundings. She could be who she was meant to be because of the truth being spoken to her.
I am grateful for this miracle today as I enter into another year of teaching. I happen to be in a place where I can speak truth to kids about who they really are: they are kind, smart and important.
I can only hope that the women of The Help continue to inspire me to not only have courage, but to speak truth to those who may not hear it otherwise.