Last night I watched “A Single Man,” starring Colin Firth, Julianne Moore, Matthew Goode and Nicholas Hoult. This is a first film for photographer, Tom Ford. If you know Ford, you will recognize his signature style. The people are beautiful, the scenes are beautiful but the main character is filled with grief and loss. In a tragic accident, Firth’s lover was killed. Close to a year later, George (Firth) decides he can’t continue his orderly and empty life. He can’t believe he can be happy again and so he prepares his suicide. Through a series of flashbacks we come to know George’s life with John. The movie doesn’t make any judgments and the synopsis suggests more than the film does. The film presents a series of events and leaves it to audience to interpret the relationships and outcomes.
With the movie fresh on my mind, today’s celebration creates an odd juxtaposition. It’s Mother’s Day and like many hallmark holidays, I am ambivalent. Familial relations are intractably tied to holidays and so often these days are tainted because they remind us of our estranged relationships or the loss of those we loved.
Most of the day, I’ve been trying to write a cohesive query. By my estimation this is clunky but we’re past midday so here it is: Are days like today more often celebratory or mournful for you? Have you had to deal with the loss of a lover or family member? How do you cope with grief? Have you ever tried to you explain to others why you struggle to move on? Have you ever tried to explain your sadness to yourself?