Saturday, December 12, 2009

Happy Accidents: 'Enjoy Each Other For What You Can Give Each Other Now'

"Relationships are not fair. They're battles. They're battles for supremacy."
-Lillian in Happy Accidents

This weekend, I watched Marisa Tomei and Vincent D'Onofrio in the indie romance Happy Accidents.

Marisa's character Ruby is a fixer, that's what her therapist tells her. She has a problem with falling for men whom she has to fix, projecting fantasies of fulfilled potential on men who may never live up to her inflated expectations.

She ends up falling for Vincent's character Sam, who says he's from the future. Loony, I know...But here's a scene I wanted to share where Ruby is at her wit's end, filled with doubt after having fallen for a man who appears to be talking nonsense. She consults her mom Lillian...

Ruby: Why am I so fucked up? Why are my relationships so fucked up?

Lillian: Because you care, my love.

Ruby: I care too much.

Lillian: You can't care too much.

Ruby: I fall in love too easily.

Lillian: There are a lot worse things that could be wrong with you. Believe me. And I bet you Sam would agree with me. Hmmm?

Ruby: [Pause] Sam is like... How can I even describe him? He's like two people in one. Sometimes he's like an incredible genius. Then he's also really clueless sometimes, like a child. And he can be really fierce. But he's also really soft. And he can be really romantic... and chivalrous. But the thing is, he's really caring. More than me. More than what I can... give back to him. I just don't know if I know what love is. It's not fair.

Lillian: Fair? Who ever told you that relationships were fair? Relationships are not fair. They're... battles. They're battles for supremacy.

Ruby: What?

Lillian: Honey, do you have any idea how many years I had to live with your father's drinking? Do you realize what a battle that was?

Ruby: I know, Mom. And that's why you helped him quit, because it wasn't fair.

Lillian: October the 15th, 1988. That was it. That was the day he stopped. Boy, I remember that day like it's yesterday. It was a Tuesday and he hasn't had a drop since.

Ruby: Because you made it happen.
Lillian Weaver: That's it. And now every day's a struggle. Sweetheart... since Daddy's stopped drinking... we have... lost our spark. I know that's it wrong of me to say it, but... I miss your father the way he was.

Ruby: But Mom, he's... an alcoholic.

Lillian: And I was a classic codependent. I know that. Until I forced myself to stop caring about him. Until I forced him to deal with his own problems. Guess what? He did. And he got better. And I guess you could say now, that our relationship is more fair. There's just one slight casualty. The passion is gone.
[PAUSE]

Lillian: My love, my beautiful daughter. You give so much. You care so deeply. But you're so busy trying to fix the problem that you forget to enjoy the moments of happiness that you have. And your father and I, we had our moments. We loved... our happiness. When we had it, we... relished it. And that's what you must do. You must go to him... and you must tell him, Honey. You tell him how you feel. And... you... enjoy... each other for what you can give to each other now. Believe me, it won't last forever.
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