Pixar’s newest movie Turning Red truly showcases the struggle that comes with dealing with strong emotions. It also addresses how these strong emotions can affect the way that we view ourselves. The movie follows thirteen year old Mei Lee and the struggles that come with being a teenager as well as dealing with the emotions that accompany it.
Though, the way that Mei learns to deal with her emotions is not exactly traditional. In fact, it’s very far from it but hey, it works. I won’t get into all the details of the movie (I’ll let you check it out for yourself) but I do want to share some important moments from the movie that I think we could all take a note or two from.
After showing strong emotion after an incredibly embarrassing event, Mei ends up turning into a red panda. She is distraught and horrified by this because she now finds herself to be gross and ugly. Even though it can be hard, she does her best to keep her emotions (and panda) at bay but it isn’t always easy controlling our emotions.
Out of all the important people in Mei’s life, her friends are absolutely the most important. They are the ones who remind her who she really is and what she’s worth. While in her red panda form, she often feels disgusted by herself and feels that nobody will like her. This clearly isn’t the case but that’s how she feels and that’s okay. Her friends love her for who she is and they even tell her that she’ll always be their girl, “panda or no panda”.
Friends like this are important, these are the people you know will always have your back. They’re the ones that will love you, I mean all of you, the good and the bad. I have a few friends like this and I am very thankful for them. I don’t know what I would do without them.
Before the end of the movie, when Mei is really struggling with whether or not to keep her panda, her father shares something important with her. He reminds her that people have all sorts of sides to them and sometimes, those sides are messy and emotional. We aren’t supposed to push the ‘bad’ or difficult parts of ourselves away, we have to make room for them. Live with it.
We have to accept ourselves for who we are. This means taking the good AND bad parts of who we are and making the most out of them. I know this isn’t always easy but the parts of yourself that seem hard to deal with are important. They’re meant to teach you and help you grow.
Read The New York Times’ article Pixar’s ‘Turning Red’ Helps Break A Glass Ceiling, a really wonderful read!
Check out Kailey’s video Things That Did Not Help My Mental Health right here on TurningPointCT.org!