Declan and I watch a movie most nights while his momma studies, and it’s literally my favorite time of the day. It’s supposed to be his down time, and for the most part it is. There’s a little bit of wrestling, a few well placed kicks in Lolli’s ribs, a lot of giggling, and just togetherness. Last night we started Lilo and Stitch, but didn’t get very far before his eyes got heavy, so we picked up where we left off tonight.
I remember watching this a gazillion times when my boys were little, but with these new eyes I have, I saw it for the first time tonight.
As I laid beside a little boy who will never know his daddy, I watched a story of loss unfold. The strong willed, Elvis loving little girl whose parents had died adopts the strange little alien who had no family. One had lost parents - one never had them. Daily, Lilo’s older sister fought Lilo and life to keep their little family together, as Stitch was pursued by those who viewed him as a monster.
Throughout the movie little Lilo reminded her sister of “ohana”. If you’ve seen it, you know ohana means family, and family means no one gets left behind or forgotten. Needless to say, those words mean something much different to me now than they did all those years ago when I watched it with the boys.
Each and every time something triggers my emotions, I make a choice. I choose not to let them steal from me the moment I’m in, and in this moment I was with D, who was laughing and pointing at Stitch dressed as Elvis singing “Devil in Disguise”. That’s some funny stuff!
Ohana is said so many times in the movie, it finally lost its sting, (thankfully) and I was almost in the clear, but then…. (Pay attention here, because this is for all of us) Stitch, who is no longer the alien version of the Tasmanian devil bent on destroying everything in his path, having found acceptance he never knew he needed says: “This is my family. I found it all on my own. It’s little, and it’s broken, but still good. Yeah. Still good.”
It’s little, and it’s broken, but still good.
As the television casted a blue hue over Declan’s sweet face, I prayed for him and so many other sweet babies that will never know their mommas or their daddies. I prayed that when they get to the age of sensing that something monumental is missing from their lives, that there will be someone there to say “ohana”. That these sweet babies will know and believe that they weren’t left behind, that their daddy’s and mommas didn’t want to leave them, and that they are lovingly led to remember the parents they didn’t know. And most importantly that they will know they are worthy of, and feel what we all long for - acceptance.
Lilo, Stitch and Lilo’s sister forged a family despite their loss. They shared laughter, and joy, and made new memories as they carried the memories of the ones they had lost.
Declan lost much before hewas born, but he doesn’t know it yet. When the time comes, and it will, his momma has a collection of books started, and I have a lifetime of stories about his daddy, that will hopefully help him make sense of what doesn’t make sense to me on most days. After tonight, we’re adding Lilo and Stitch to that collection. I love Hawaii, aliens and Elvis, so why not?
Funny how a silly child’s movie can speak so deeply to your soul when you’re listening.
Death isn’t the only thing that causes a family to be broken, and there isn’t a family on this planet that is unscathed in some way. We have so many hurting kiddos that just need to know that they matter. When you pray for your children, pray for all of them.
Little. Broken. But GOOD.
Only we can make it good.