Friday, August 1, 2008

The Dorothy Complex

One of my favorite movies of all time is "The Wizard of Oz". When I was a child, the movie was shown once a year around Easter time. There was no such thing as color TV back then, so we were happy to view the show in it's original black and white format. My three siblings and I would arrange ourselves on the floor around the TV, and whine in reply to our parents' admonitions to, "Move back, you're going to ruin your eyes!".
We could recite some of the lines from memory and even though we watched the movie year after year, we continued to be mesmerized when the bad witch melted and the flying monkeys came into view. I think it was probably the quietest two hours my siblings and I spent together througout the year.
I don't know that I actually had a favorite character or that there was one part of the movie that I liked better than the others. I loved it all! But recently I began to think more about the last Oz scenes in that movie - the ones where Dorothy and Toto are preparing to climb into the hot air balloon in order to be whisked back to Kansas and home. When the balloon ascended without them, I felt sad for Dorothy. After the perils she endured and the help she gave to all the other characters, she was left unhappy and homesick. But there was a surprise!
Even when I watch that movie now with my grandkids, it's still a joy to hear the words, "You had it all along", in reference to Dorothy having the ability to get herself home by the mere clicking of the heels of the ruby slippers. Lately I've been thinking that applies to our lives too!
Sometimes when I wonder what it takes to be happy or ponder what I should do next in order to feel fulfilled in my life, I start thinking about Dorothy. She went through trials and tribulations along with her good friends, the Tin Man, Scarecrow, and Cowardly Lion. She learned to stand up for herself and her friends when she confronted the Wizard and she encouraged her friends to begin to speak for themselves. There are a lot of lessons to be learned from the movie, but the lesson that impacts my life the most is found in those last scenes in Oz.
I often whine about not knowing what I'm meant to do in this life. I walk about as if in a trance sometimes, waiting for the bluebird of happiness to land on my shoulder. I claim to not know what to do next to enhance my life. I wring my hands and wonder how I'm going to accomplish this or that. I say I want more music in my life, more joy, more creative outlet and I suppose I expect someone to hand those things to me. I act helpless in my own life! I've nicknamed that litany of whining, "The Dorothy Complex".
When I'm busy worrying, wondering, and pondering, I'm completely oblivious to the abilities I already possess. I don't even notice the "ruby slippers" I wear every day. As I was doing household chores the other day, it occured to me that I could change my life if I chose to do so. I have the means to bring more music into my life - I have a keyboard and music books I can follow and I can learn more about reading the notes. I have numerous music CDs I could play, but rarely do. I love to sing, yet I've pretty much stopped singing around the house. I don't know why. My spouse once noted that I seemed happier when I was singing. What about the joy? What makes me happy? I used to spend hours each day in my backyard cabin. It was my haven, my get-away place, my sanctuary. I hardly go out there anymore. I have this wonderful little cabin in my own backyard and I rarely use it these days. I don't know why. As for creative outlet - I worry about what to get rid of in my de-cluttering efforts, but I've overlooked the fact that I have the means to create almost any fabric item I choose. I have the supplies and the ability to create wonderful things. I used to sew almost every day and I was happy while doing it. So what's stopping me from doing that now?
Am I waiting for a good witch to come and wave a wand over me and tell me to simply click my heels together so I'll be more content? No, I don't think I need that. I KNOW how to make my life happier, better, joyous, and fulfilled. I only need to use those things I already possess - my time, my supplies, and the creative gifts that have generously been granted to me.
And to think, I had them all along.


KernowWitch said...

Very thought provoking Kady...We all have the ability to do things with our lives but we get lost along the way and just need guidence to get back on the right track. I watched the film 'Wild Hogs' with Andy this week, apart from making us laugh lots it showed 4 middle-aged men reflecting back to high school and who they were....we all do that. So my friend lets click our red shoes the way my son wants 'Ding Dong the Witch is Dead' played at my funeral...and I'm going to have it played...hehe...yes I have the Chrissy xx

Kady said...

You're so right. We get lost along the way in our lives but we can get back on the right track. "Ding Dong the Witch is Dead" at your funeral? That's too funny. Thanks for posting.