Recently seeing the movie Wonder, it got me wondering about some things, myself. The movie, inspired by the novel written by R.J. Palacio, tells the story of a young boy, Auggie, who was born with a rare genetic facial disorder. Roughly 600,000 people in the US have been diagnosed with this disorder. The movie was inspiring in many ways and ultimately about how resilient and courageous human beings can be in the face of adversity.
Some thoughts from the movie and lessons learned:
- Auggie was bullied by some of his classmates because he looked different than the others. When other classmates got to know him, they saw his beautiful qualities – he was smart, funny, cute, kind and in essence – really a lot like them.
- Lesson: Continue to be your beautiful self even when others do not see your worth. Those who are worth having as friends will value you. Move on from those who do not.
- Auggie developed friendships with classmates that lifted him up, helped him step out of his comfort zone and feel accepted.
- Lesson: Be kind to others. We never know what someone has going on in their life and one simple act of kindness can elevate them in ways you may never know.
- Auggie had amazing support from his family from the very beginning, so much so that the daughter, Via, often felt invisible to her family. From my perspective, one of the most incredible story lines from the movie is how the daughter persevered in her own path, came out of her own shell, and absolutely shined at the end and her family DID take notice.
- Lesson: Ensure your voice is heard. When you feel invisible to others, be courageous in expressing your own voice. Make yourself known and heard.
- Auggie’s father, Nate, kept things light for his family. His comedic quips in moments of awkwardness, brought a sense of relief.
- Lesson: Humor goes a long way in breaking down barriers.
- Auggie’s mother, Isabel, was the strength and glue that held the family together, especially when it came to Auggie. She knew when it was time to “let him go” and for him to go out into the world, which could possibly be a cruel one for Auggie. In doing so, she represented “tough love” as this empowered him to break out of his shell and come into his own. After that, she followed up on a dream she had previously put aside.
- Lesson #1: Demonstrating tough love is sometimes necessary in order for another person to grow and flourish.
- Lesson #2: It is NEVER too late to give up on your dreams!
If you want to step out, be courageous, achieve your dreams, ensure your voice is being heard, all the while continuing to be your beautiful self and having fun along the way, give me a shout.