After my glowing review of To Save a Life, I thought of one other thing that kinda annoyed me about the movie. I know it’s Hollywood but they do make it look a bit easy to make friends with that one outsider kid. He’s mostly normal underneath and his awkwardness is all a little charming after you get to know him. However, this is not real life. The nerdy church girl usually doesn’t have stunning teeth and perfect hair and quirky style.
When I was a teacher, there was a kid. He was cool. He skateboarded, dressed normally, had a charming personality and was on the fast track to becoming a popular kid.
There was another kid. A young man who was awkward, had been held back in his grades and laughed at all the wrong times with the strangest most contrived evil voice you have ever heard.
Cool kid decided to make friends with Awkward kid. He was a better person than me. Amazing right? All a great movie ending right? Maybe. But most of us will never understand the full extent of that commitment. Cool kid stayed friends with Awkward kid, giving up his chance at popularity. He not only made friends with Awkward kid, he made BEST friends with him. They were inseparable, and not in the way that usually happens where Awkward kid tails after Cool kid. Cool kid included, invited and genuinely wanted Awkward kid around. I still am not sure I understand it. I was so inspired. I was so moved. For YEARS this went on. They are still friends TODAY! The grown-ups saw it as wonderful. Maybe some of the kids saw it that way also. I’m not sure. I only know that every time I happen to run into either of them, I think how much better I can be after seeing that example.
The thing that gets me about it is, it’s not easy. It’s not easy to be friends with people sometimes. It’s hard to NOT try and change someone – give them a make over and give them the low down on what’s cool to talk about and what’s going to bring an awkward halt to conversation. It’s not a 2 hour movie and then you all go back to your cliques and feel good about yourselves.
It’s forever, because that’s what Heaven looks like.