This is a movie that I have watched many times before, and always really enjoyed. If you have not seen A Beautiful Mind, I highly recommend it. The short version of the story is that it is about John Nash who was a brilliant mathematician who won the Nobel Prize for his work. He was also a paranoid schizophrenic.
While those details would probably be enough to make a pretty decent movie, the story really is not about those aspects of his life, though they do make up most of the movie. The real heart of the movie is that it is a love story. I watched an interview with Ron Howard, the director, and he said as much.
When I first watched the movie, probably 15 years or so ago, I acknowledged the love story, but that was not the interesting part to me. I was more interested in the power of this man’s mind to overcome his delusions and continue living, though it was a long hard struggle until the day he died.
I think my current situation brought the whole love story into greater relief for me when I watched it today. Nash’s wife is the reason he was able to overcome such impossible odds and continue to do great work. She stuck by him despite incredible challenges, and unbelievable struggles.
Living without my Queenie for the last three weeks has only deepened my love and appreciation for her. Not to say that I wouldn’t have preferred spending that time with her, but I have come to realize just how much she does for me personally that I don’t think I ever fully appreciated before now. Not to mention all that she does for our kids in keeping them busy, fed, educated, clean, etc.
I’m not talking about all of the cooking and cleaning she does either, though I definitely miss her cooking right now. I’m not even talking about her efforts to keep me socially engaged, which is pretty much the only way that happens.
I am talking about the way that she has become every bit a part of me as much as any of my other body parts, and probably even more so for she has truly become a part of my heart and soul.
I received a blessing back when I was a teenager that told me to look for a wife (someday, not when I was 16) that would be congenial to my soul. At the time I don’t think I knew what that really meant, nor do I know that I fully appreciated it when I married her. But, it has become very clear to me in the last three weeks exactly what that means.
I am not even sure that I have the words to explain how that feels to me right now, but I guess the simplest way to describe it is that I feel like a part of me is missing. Not a physical part of me as much as an emotional and spiritual part of me. It really is challenging for me to describe it in words.
We have spent significant time apart before, including four months when I was deployed a few years back, and even then it didn’t hit me this bad, and I think I know why. In every other case I knew when I would see her again. Even though that return date got moved on occasion courtesy of broken planes or weather, there was always a day for me to look forward to.
But not this time.
I know the day will come, and I have faith that it will be sooner than later, and definitely not even the four months we endured before, but not knowing is just killing both of us inside. It is like waiting for a package to come without any kind of tracking so who knows when it will get there, only the package is your eternal companion, and is way more important than anything you could order on Amazon.
I’m not really sure why a movie moved me as much as it did today, especially when I have seen it multiple times and knew what was going to happen, but I am glad that it did. I am grateful for the movie A Beautiful Mind for helping me to better understand just how essential a part of my life my Queenie is.
What are you grateful for?