Tuesday, October 25, 2011

"It's called the Snugly Duckling." "Well, I do like ducklings." "YEA!"

My second guest post is by the lovely Miss Clair. You may find her blog here http://redambrosia.blogspot.com/ now I shall leave you to enjoy her post. 
We interrupt your regular programming...

Hello all you charming and good-looking people. My name is Clair, though I also go by a lot of other names, and as you may have guessed already, dear Jack has asked me to guest post. That is why you are confused about this stranger who has invaded your screen. But confus no more!

I am here to talk about my favourite character.

At first, when Jack asked me, I was all (in my head), "How on earth am I going to choose from the wonderfully delicious array of characters the world has handed to me? That's impossible. Forget it." But in real life I was like "Totally love to!"

Ah life.

But anyway. If you are not familiar with a delightful person by the name of Luna Lovegood, I suggest you head to the nearest bookstore and make yourself acquainted RIGHT NOW.

Luna Lovegood, daughter of Xenophilius Lovegood (just as a side note, Xenophilius means 'love of strange things' in Greek), is a student in Ravenclaw house at Hogwarts. She is fourteen when we are first introduced in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, and she is her own person. She is what any of us could be if we stripped away our insecurities, self-consciousness, and inhibitions -- honest yet kind, confident yet humble. 

The kids think she's weird -- I mean, which of us wouldn't gigglesnort a little if we met someone who went around telling the straight-faced truth unabashedly, and seemed to live in a dream world of her own? But she doesn't care because it doesn't matter what other people think of her. Her father loves her, she excels in her classes, and she's talented in the areas that interest her. I think she's got it pretty good.

I've longed to be like Luna ever since I met her. It would be so nice not to have all that peer pressure weighing down on me, so nice not to ever think about what people would say if you did something weird -- or to use perhaps a better term -- extraordinary. It takes courage to step out on your own. 

I myself have always been an outside-the-lines kind of girl (all you have to do is look at my teachers' comments on my homework to know), but that courage is something I don't possess -- yet. I don't necessarily believe in that Disney 'follow your heart, your dreams, at all costs' stuff -- sometimes you have to sacrifice your dreams to accomplish something greater -- but I do believe that we should recognize our passions and pursue them. That is something Luna has taught me.<

For a long time I laboured under the mistaken assumption that unless I could squeeze myself into some kind of label, and then strive to meet all the 'requirements' that label presented I could never function as a normal human being in the real world. But when I realized that it didn't work out that way, I crossed to the polar opposite and forced my 'individualism' to define me, which was also a mistake. 

And right about now, I'd like to share an excerpt from a letter by Evanna Lynch, who acted the role of Luna for the Harry Potter movie franchise, written to her own character. She can articulate herself more aptly than I on this particular subject.

"Luna, you instantly captivated me. I didn't know why but there was something about you with your upside-down magazine, straggly blonde hair and the honest, unabashed way you stared at people without blinking that fascinated and perplexed me at once...you didn't stop to excuse yourself or feel ashamed when it became clear that everyone found you strange...You baffled me, not because you were odd, but because you were...perfect. It was the way you carried your oddness like it was the most natural thing in the world. You didn't market your oddness as your defining feature the way some insecure teenagers do, in guise of confidence and security. Nor were you oblivious to the awkward and uncomfortable feelings your oddness provoked in others. When, unable to comprehend how you wore your oddness so honestly and unashamedly, your peers reverted to mockery and bullying; you recognised this as a reflection of their own deep-seated uinsecurity and calmly let them carry on, quite above your head. You weren't trying hard to present a certain aspect of yourself that would boldly identify you in the world. And that's when it occurred to me how bizarre and positively ridiculous it was to apply the word 'weird' to describe you, when you represented the most natural and unpretentious state possible to be; you were yourself."

Does that strike a chord with you? That strikes a chord with me. The idea of all that freedom definitely is appealing. In my own life, that would be the freedom of finding my perfect identity in Christ, finally discovering just exactly who it is that He wants me to be, and realizing that I am completely capable, through Him, of becoming that person. As it is right now, I'm struggling with that day by day. I'm tempted to be selfish, to look out only for myself and make my way in the world like that, but I think C. S. Lewis sums it up so beautifully:


"When first things are put first second things are not supressed but increased."

I know I've gotten a little off-topic here, but this is what happens when I find something beautiful. I suppose this isn't really about Luna herself -- hard facts about her personality, appearance, and behaviour -- but more about the way Luna makes me feel. I think, really, that's the way it is when you've become really good friends with someone. If a random person were to ask you to describe your best friend, you wouldn't -- or shouldn't, anyway -- tell them that she has blonde hair, or he's kind of short, or she has freckles. You would tell them that she has the wildest sense of humour ever, that he gives the best hugs, that she tells you that you're beautiful when you're feeling your ugliest. 

Luna and I give each other book hugs. We're pals. We connect. And in a sense, she's real. She may not be tangible, but she can offer comfort or laughs or tears, depending on what you need. All you have to do is flip through the pages till you find her.

And that is why she's my favourite.

Thanks again to Jack, who is lovely and helpful and encouraging. Peace my brothas and sistahs; have a magical day!

Clair

1 comment :

  1. Ooh! What a great post! I have to admit that I'd never thought that much about Luna (despite the fact that she is one of my favorite characters) but I can totally see what you mean. I, too, and striving to be more like that.

    This is such a lovely post. Thanks so much for sharing!

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