Vulnerability in a Bird Box

January 7, 2019

I’m sure you’ve heard the huge hype of the Netflix Original Movie, Bird Box.  I’m not normally one of the ones to jump on the bandwagon of watching shows just because everyone else has seen it.  But, of course, I got sucked into it when my husband started watching it one Friday night.  You may think this post is all about a review of the movie and my thoughts on the plot.  No, not quite.  However, this post will contain spoilers.  If you haven’t seen the movie, this is my warning!

First, a little synopsis of the movie.  Bird Box is about a woman and two children who are running from a mysterious creature that when you see it, you die.  The three of them must voyage their way down a dangerous river, while wearing blindfolds, to what they believe to be a safe haven.

So, what does this movie have to do with vulnerability?  At the time we watched Bird Box, I had also been reading Dare to Lead by Brene Brown.  In her book, she explains how the most vulnerable feeling is love.  Love leads to foreboding joy, or the feeling that something bad will happen whenever something good happens.

With these words in the back of my head, this movie became the biggest roller coaster of emotions that I have felt in a very long time.  I was essentially on edge with anxiety the ENTIRE movie.  As a mother, any thriller with kids as the main characters freaks me the heck out.  The entire time all I can see is my daughter as one of the characters and hope that nothing happens to the children.  I kept screaming “this movie sucks, I hate it,” while refusing to look away because I had to know if the children survived.

Halfway through the movie, my anxiety was at an all-time high.  I kept seeing flashes of foreboding joy, such as when the main characters were sitting eating pop tarts with huge smiles on their faces and a sense of euphoria over their faces.  Only to have the non-blind folded people screech into the house they were raiding.  I saw a woman refusing to be vulnerable by naming her children “boy and girl” instead of giving them real names.  By the end of the movie, I broke.  I was sobbing when they finally made it to the safe haven and the woman actual gave the boy and girl names:  Olivia Jr. and Tom.

Phew.  It definitely took me a few days to get over that emotional roller coaster.  But, it also gave me a lot of room for reflection and helped me practice gratitude to avoid that foreboding joy feeling in my own life.  So yes, while it is scary to practice vulnerability in our lives, are we really living if we don’t? Are we missing out on enjoying truly joyful moments?  I’ll let you be the judge of that.


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