I usually do not give much notice to commercials (fast forwarding whenever possible), but recently an advertisement for the perfume, Miss Dior, did exactly what the producer intended – it caught my full attention.
In the film, Natalie Portman stars as a runaway bride. The wedding venue and dress exude absolute perfection. But the film is strangely black and white.
Portman is wavering, and as she reaches the end of the aisle her doubt turns into decision. “I am sorry, Dad” she says as the scene bursts in to vibrant hues and Portman tears off her gorgeous hand-crafted gown to reveal a black cocktail dress.
Feminist Janis Joplin’s power anthem, “Piece of My Heart,” cheers Portman on as she runs fast and hard away from her vows, her family, and fiancé.
A second later she reaches a precipice, and a helicopter appears and she leaps on. Her apparent lover (also co-pilot) kisses her on the cheek and they fly away into the sunset. Portman has chosen to be “Miss Dior” instead of a married madam.
As I observed the grandeur scene and message of “freedom” portrayed by Portman, it made me sad.
Not because she chose singleness. No one should marry the wrong person and singleness is an equally esteemed gift from God as marriage. No, I was saddened by her rebellion against the commitment of marriage and the glorification of a life free from marital responsibilities.
It is hard for me to remember that there was indeed a time in my life when the only person I was responsible for was myself (much less jumping on a helicopter with rose petals swirling all around).
These days my life is filled with responsibilities to my husband and children. I wish in that order. But the majority of my time is spent doing things like changing a diaper on a minivan floorboard, scrubbing up calcified play-doh, or saying things like “We don’t play with toilet water” and “No you can’t wear princess slippers to the grocery store.”
I’m a runner and I used to think logging miles was hard. Now hitting the road all alone sounds like a breeze. It’s the getting out the door part that is the real marathon.