Tuesday, October 26, 2004

The Baby Dance?

I like happy endings. I know they aren't always possible but I do pride myself on avoiding things that upset me unneccessarily. Movies like, "Terms of Endearment" "Beaches" "Cold Mountain" - things like that... I don't watch them.

Why? Not because I am some harda** who has a problem being emotional. But, life can be depressing enough. Watch the news - there are plenty of things out there to disappoint and upset you if you want to find them. Why subject yourself to fictional melodramas? Worse yet, if it takes something THAT depressing to make you feel better about your life... then you've got serious problems.

Late last night I couldn't sleep. Not sure why... probably the storm that was blowing in. My husband was snoring soundly and all the kids were fast asleep. I was skimming through the channels and came across a movie called, "The Baby Dance" starring Stockard Channing (whom I absolutely love) and Laura Dern. Laura Dern played a woman who was expecting her fifth child and she and her husband really couldn't afford to have any more children. Stockard Channing played a woman who had been through the infertility gambit and was desperate to have a child.

Ah... match made in heaven right? A guaranteed happy ending here... win-win situation, blah blah blah.

The baby was born with the umbilical chord wrapped around her neck. She was deprived of oxygen and the doctor had no idea if she had suffered any brain damage or not. There was obviously still a chance she would be normal.

And, what does this lovely, financially stable, educated, desperate couple decide to do? They decide NOT to adopt the baby - at the last minute because they just aren't sure if they want to deal with a child that might have "challenges." After watching this child's birth, they simply leave the hospital and fly home. In fact, both couples leave the hospital without the baby. The last scene shows a row of baby bassinets in the hospital, each cute little bundle with a little name tag, until you get to the last one... and it's a baby girl, crying, with a BLANK name tag on the bassinet. All the grown ups went home - and left a helpless child at the hospital.

That last scene broke my heart. I had to remind myself in the hour or so it took me to go to sleep - that this was a movie, a dramatization, and that the poor baby had a stage mother off to the side waiting for a director to yell "cut" so she could rush to her infant's side. I went in to check on all of my babies at least 3 times before I could finally settle in and sleep.

Just what is the moral of the story? What is the point of "The Baby Dance"? That people are selfish? Weak? Just why did they want a baby to begin with? What is the point of this movie? That there are some people who can't figure out how birth control works? That there are some people who can't have children and believe that that means the world owes them a PERFECT one? This movie stated that there are some really crappy people out in the world - and that was ALL it did. This wasn't shedding light on a major social issue, it wasn't spreading the word against abuse or domestic violence. It was just two freaking hours of what an imperfect world we live in.

So, apparently, being unable to have children allows you the marvelous choice to get the pick of the litter. A luxury that biological parents don't have and WOULDN'T want. I believe there is a reason why some people aren't capable of having children.They aren't cut out to be real parents and subconciously they know it... which is probably why they can't have them.

This is why I don't watch movies with unhappy endings. They always manage to get under my skin and bother me for days. This was just sad. Sad and depressing.

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