Happy Go Lucky

Poppy Thanks in part to my Facebook friends, I did not go see The Time Traveler’s Wife. I loved the book. This means, I know, that I should preserve that sentiment and not see the movie. The problem is that I love movies. I mean I LOVE them. So often times that trumps all reason and off I go.  But last night, I resisted. And I’m glad.

Josh and I watched Happy Go Lucky. I was thinking it would be a love story like Amalie, only less stylized and more formulaic. I was wrong. The love story aspect was only one small piece. It had a lot to do with love, though. Loving life. I asked Josh, “What do you think that movie was about?” He goes, “It was about that girl. That scene where Poppy (the main character, in that photo to the left she’s learning the Flamenco) goes to see her big sister.” The sister character is severe, controlling, and pregnant. The sister tells Poppy (she’s 30) that she needs to grow up, get a mortgage, and find someone to have babies with. Poppy laughs and smiles as she does throughout the entire movie and says something to the effect of “I’m happy, I’m lucky, I enjoy my freedom.” And she does. But what I really liked about  this character is that she faces head on the difficulties and harshness of life (caring for and helping one of her students who’s a bully, engaging in a delicate conversation with a homeless crazy man, confronting her violent driving instructor). These things clearly weigh on her, even endanger her, and she still chooses happiness.

I felt the same way about Julia Child in the movie Julie and Julia. My favorite moment in that movie was when Julia Child is reading a letter aloud to her husband. It’s from her sister and she tells Julia that she’s pregnant. Julia begins to cry and it’s clear how much she wishes she could have had babies, yet through her noisy crying she’s saying how happy she is for her sister while her husband comforts her. Again, fighting to choose the happiness in life.

These kinds of characters are so lovable to me and they make me want to be a better person. I relate so much.  Happiness is hard to get a handle on long-term. It’s slippery or something. Josh and I have often have a conversation that goes like this:

Josh: Are you happy in life?

Me: (quickly because I’m happy to being paid attention at that moment) Yeah. Are you?

Josh: (slowly because he’s deep like that) That’s such a hard question.

And then I think, man, our kids are going to be so confused. Well, today, Magnolia was listening to our conversation about the Happy Go Lucky movie. (She’s eight.) And as Josh was talking about how Poppy loved life, Magnolia said, “When I think about death, I love my life.” I was like, um, holy crap I don’t know what to say to that. So I just nodded and said, “That’s good.” I don’t think she’s confused at all. And if you ask anyone that knows us, I bet they’d say she’s the happiest one in the family. They’d be right.

Published by jody sparks

Jody Sparks Mugele spent her first career in marketing writing and leading teams of writers and editors. After her son came out as transgender in 2015, she dedicated herself to advocating for the rights of the LGBTQ+ community. For two years, she led the Indianapolis regional chapter of PFLAG, a nationally renowned LGBTQ+ advocacy group. She has given many conference talks about parenting trans kids, healthcare in the trans community, and suicidality among LGBTQ+ youth. And with GenderNexus, an Indianapolis-based advocacy organization, she created programming and led support groups to work with parents to help their children through all aspects of gender transition. She recently moved to Northeast Georgia where she is excited to develop opportunities to continue to strongly and proudly advocate for LGBTQ+ members of our society. She also LOVES kitschy Christmas crafting!

8 thoughts on “Happy Go Lucky

  1. Jody, well…your first blog entry was great. Second entry was great too. I didn’t see the movie or read the book. The whole subject about his time traveling drives me batty. Good luck with your blog and selling your book.

    Wendi Knape in Westland, MI

    1. Val, I thought the time travel would confuse me in the book, but I thought the author did an amazing job making it read naturally. However, I cannot figure out how she managed writing that book! I imagine her work area was plastered with a huuuuuuge time-line or something.

  2. Too bad the movie isn’t living up to the book. It is such a good book, that it would be hard to measure up! I wonder how the movie would stand on its’ own, though.

    Yes, one thing about Maggie is that she is soooo smiley– almost always :-).

  3. Jody. I LOVE the top graphic the green and black is very eye-catching. Did you take that photo yourself? You may want to eventually add more in your sidebar. I’ve found that links to helpful sites and tags that lead people there also generates more visits. Good job! And good luck with everything. Shutta

    1. Thanks Shutta. Sorry I missed your schmooze. It always seems to fall on my husband’s birthday weekend. I heard it was wonderful. My sister put the banner together. I love it, too. The photo was a stock photo, but it’s just what I used to wear in high school, ya know, when I was… cool. I’ll definitely add more links as I go; thanks for the tip. And, thanks for visiting!

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