Thursday, January 14, 2016

Alan Rickman- Always

I am not one to have celebrity crushes, not since I obsessed over Kirk Cameron, Cory Feldman (because Shannon had claimed Cory Haim for her own), and papered my walls and ceiling in Teen Beat photos of Joe McIntyre and other members of the New Kids on the Block.

Oh wait, there was that brief foray into madness during college where I may or may not have had passionate feelings about whether *NSYNC or Backstreet Boys was the better band (cough cough *NSYNC cough cough).

I also fell madly in love with Elijah Wood after watching 'Lord of the Rings,' which is weird.  To be fair, I remember thinking he was adorable in 'North,' so it wasn't a sudden crush.

It's also possible that I thought there was hope for me and Leo(nardo DiCaprio) after watching the first part of 'Titanic' on VHS at least a hundred times.

And I am grown-up enough to admit that I would totally be fan-girling over Benedict Cumberbatch, were I a teenager and not a happily married mother of two... meh.  Who I am kidding?  I love him.  If Teen Beat had a picture of him, and I could find a Teen Beat, that picture might be taped to something nearby.

But while those crushes were nothing more than the infatuations of a teenage girl, Alan Rickman has held the place of honor for as long as I can remember.  You might scoff, but it's true.  I saw 'Robin Hood: Prince of Theives' when I was thirteen and I immediately fell in love with the kid who played Wulf.  I also harbored dreams of slow dancing with some boy or another to 'Everything I Do' by Bryan Adams because literally nothing could possibly be more romantic than that.  Ever.  End of story.

Watching that movie over and over, even at thirteen, I understood how amazing Alan Rickman was.  The Sheriff of Nottingham had never been so terrifying, so passionate.  He was cruel and heartless and thrilling to watch.  The Rugby Star and I have, more than once, quoted the part when the Sheriff says he'll cut Robin Hood's heart out with a spoon and his cousin asks why.  'Because it's DULL, you twit.  It'll hurt more!'  Terrifying and funny.  Powerful.  I was enthralled with the villain I perceived Alan Rickman to be.  He was so good at it, he must be evil in real life.

But then came Colonel Brandon in 'Sense and Sensibility' and I fell in love in a different way.  At first, I was as against him as anyone in the family- he was the evil Sheriff of Nottingham, after all.  He won me over rather immediately however and all was forgiven.  He was kind and soft-spoken, caring and compassionate.  And I thought- this must be who he is.

And according to the tributes found all over the internet, that may have been the correct interpretation, for which I am very, very glad.

Then there's Severus Snape.  Brilliantly acted, perfectly interpreted.  There could be no other to play that role than Alan Rickman.  With Mr. Rickman's death, I feel as though Snape has died again, that I have just experienced the ending of the books and the movies once more.  I don't want it to be true.

Despite the fact that I don't have celebrity crushes, this one got me in the 'feels' today.  I can admit, I cried.  And then I laughed at myself for being ridiculous because I don't know Alan Rickman.  But then I cried again because I respect him as a performer.  I watch so many of his movies over and over (Love, Actually, Die Hard, Harry Potter, to name a few).  He was a great talent and, through the words of others, a good man.

I did not know you personally, Mr. Alan Rickman.  But I will miss you.  Rest in peace.

Monday, January 11, 2016

A Letter To My Mom


Yesterday was not an easy day.  Yesterday, I had to stop and figure out exactly how long you'd been gone because I didn't know it off the top of my head.  Every year, I have your birthday written in my calendar and I know exactly how old you'd be.  And every year, I have January 10th on the calendar, the day you left us.  But this year I had to stop and think how long it had been.  It's been six years.  Six years feels like such a short amount of time, but it's really not.  So very much has changed and you've missed so much.

You missed the last 'Harry Potter' movies.  They were really good.

You missed us moving from Guatemala to Bahrain and now to Serbia.

You missed us getting our new 'puppy,' Pip.  

You missed some good books that I know you would've liked.

You missed The Ladybug's freckles and The Sprout's red hair.

You missed buying us Christmas ornaments each year.

You missed being jealous that I went to Italy last Spring Break.

You missed homecomings and goodbyes and TV shows and delicious meals and holidays and the every day things that make life life.  You've missed it.  And we've missed you.

I posted some pictures on Facebook and thought to myself, 'I've used these photos a few times.  Time for some new ones.'  But it's been six years since we've taken a new photo together.  We will never take another new photo together.

The Sprout sat in my lap and looked at those pictures.  She said, 'Is that you and your mommy?' I was happy she recognized you, but so, so sad that she would never know you.

Last summer, my R told me you stop by the house sometimes.  She said you don't stay long because you're so happy wherever you are.  That made me happy.  I hope that it's true.  And you're welcome to stop by any time to check in... just don't do anything creepy.

Every year that passes is easier... and harder.  The pain has lessened, though it still smacks me upside the head every now and again and leaves me in a helpless puddle of tears and snot on the floor.  Oh yeah, I ugly cry about you sometimes, Mom.  Other times, I can go a few days without thinking about you.  You're always there, though.  I know you're watching over us, keeping us safe, and making sure the Red Head is keeping me on my toes.  I have no doubt you're up there giggling about her- she's making me work hard which fulfills that "I hope you get one just like you," curse that mothers throughout the ages have muttered.

I love you and miss you, Mom.  I wish you were still here, but if you're happier there, I'm happy for you.  I hope you have found your peace.