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    My husband and I watched Everything Everywhere All At Once again last night. We happened to be in Seattle visiting my eldest child when it was first released and saw it then. I’m glad to have rewatched it. It is a super fun movie that breaks my heart and makes me laugh out loud.

    What I love about it is how this middle-aged woman who is falling apart because she is lousy at everything she does–marriage, parenting, running a business, paying taxes–is actually perfect because she is entirely full of potential. I relate so much to this. So, so much. It is obvious to me that she has ADHD. The opening scene where her husband is trying talk about something serious and her attention is jumping from one thing to another and another and another and bossing him around and grousing about everything while trying to do sixty-eleven things at once is painfully familiar. Which is the heartbreak for me. That’s the parent I was when my children were young.

    To me, a good story has some kind of redemption in it. The redemption may be really small or subtle, but something must be redeemed. (There are also good stories that are anti-redemptive, like Banshees of Inisherin, but I tend to not want to watch those.) SPOILER ALERT: I love how Evelyn is redeemed to herself. She is able to see her own potential and to know her intrinsic worth. In doing so, she is able to stop projecting her self-disappointment onto everyone else and to love them for who they are. END SPOILER

    I’m thinking about redemption in my own life today, about parts of myself that I want to reject, relationships that are broken, things uncompleted. I think of each of my children, particularly my oldest, and the ways my lack of integration/wholeness impacted them. I wonder if there is anything I can do to make amends for the ways I failed them. None of them are Jobu Tupaki, thank goodness, but they each inherited my ADHD and have struggled on their own paths. What redemption is possible? How do I love them and give to them entirely for them without bringing any of my own stuff to it? Can redemption happen if redemption is the goal? I kind of think not. I just finished a Buddhist novel, When I’m Gone, Look for Me In the East, and I am beginning to understand how attachment to anything becomes a block to what is true. How can I be for my children without letting my wants for my children to get in the way? How can I be without letting my wants get in the way?

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