Last night was family movie night for Team Allen. We let our oldest daughter, Deryn, select a movie. She chose Soul Surfer. It is based on the life of Bethany Hamilton, a young girl who had her arm amputated by a shark attack. Let me tell you I would definitely recommend this movie. This movie resonated with our family in so many ways.
First this scripture was mentioned in the movie:
Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV) "For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."
I love this verse. I found strength in this verse a long time ago and then again when Chaz was injured. I have always believed in the Lord's plan. This verse simply reenforces that. I was raised in a Baptist home. I come from a long line of faithful people. This long linage is another thing I am so grateful for. If is wasn't for the road of grace and faith that my family laid before me, I don't think I would have survived everything God has put me through. I know he has a plan. I know my family before me listened to that plan. I know everything God put me through before and will put me through will only make the road better for our children and their children in the future. I know God has great things in store for us. He has already shown of some of those and I believe he will continue to reward us for our faithfulness.
Second, this movie really hit home with our oldest. She just wanted to watch the movie because a teenager was on the cover. She said it looked cool. Oh and she loves sharks. So she was little upset when Bethany was bit by the shark. She quickly said, "Wait Sharks don't normally bite during the day. They attack at night." De was glued to the movie. You could tell she really enjoyed it. I had to promise to buy it for her for her birthday coming up. After we watched the movie, we took a walk to the store and to return the movies to redbox. On the walk, she was talking to me about the movie. She said it was just so cool that Bethany found a way to get back to surfing. Then she said, "I guess she's like Daddy huh?!" I said, "How do you figure that?" She then explained to me how Bethany and her Daddy parallel to each other. She talked about how brave and strong they both were. I had a very proud Mommy moment last night. When we got back I tried to get her to talk to Chaz about it, but she seemed a little embarrassed and it took a while to get it out of her. I don't think she's ready for that and we didn't want to push her. Deryn is very proud of her Daddy and you can see that in her behavior when she's around him. All I got her to tell Chaz was that she saw how similar he was to Bethany.
Third, thank goodness for a positive role model for young girls. I don't know about you, but I am tired of the Disney and Nick machines attempting to mass produce role models for our kids. I have always said our girls need real role models not mass produced ones. I am a very over protective mommy and I have had many talks about fantasy and real. I am so happy to have a real role model for our girls. This movie came out at such a perfect time for our girls. This movie showed them the before, during and after of a traumatic injury. We are in the during phase and our girls need to see how this all ends. They got to see the happily ever after of a real person. How wonderful?!
Fourth, this movie really demonstrated the power of a strong family unit. Our family parallels in so many ways to the Hamilton family. One of us has suffered a big blow, but we all banded together to get through it. We've been knocked down and gotten back up too. We have more than faith to get through all of this. Deryn is able to see that. As the oldest sister she'll be able to set the pace for Ryann and help us remain a strong family. It is really hard to make this lessons get through to Ry because she is so little, but we are getting in there. With Deryn's help, we'll more than succeed.
My only wish is that Bethany was closer so Deryn could meet her. Deryn has already been inspired by the "green amputee" here at WRAMC. We have a woman here who loves green and lost one of her legs. I love that the girls can see that men and women can survive such adversity and move forward. Deryn said last night that Bethany needs to come to Walter Reed and check out their prosthetics. She said the one in the movie is no where as good as what they get for her Daddy and his friends.
One thing is for sure, Chaz and I have some amazing girls. There is no telling what they will become when they grow up. They are being blessed by meeting some exceptional people and some awesome experiences. I can only hope Chaz and I are serving them as well. I can only hope the girls will look back at all of this and be impressed with how we've handled it all.