I am going to open this #TheBirdsandTheBees blog with a huge SIGH.
There. I feel better now I suggest all of you do the same. Deep breath in…let that sucker out. Feels better, doesn’t it? Episode 409 was one that made us hold our breath more than once. I want to talk about all the things that made me tear up…the things that made me rage and the things that made me just sigh with pure joy and happiness. That isn’t what my blog has been about this season though and I shouldn’t change that now.
This time for me, the loudest thing was the silence. Bree’s silence, in particular, was deafening.
Like most of us, Brianna learned from those around her. To protect those we care about, we deny them the truth and shoulder the burden of our secrets. Her mother and father both did this for her. It is her natural go-to whether or not she understands it, almost like a reflex.
This young woman is so protective of those around her that she carries each worry on her own. She is taking such great care of Lizzie, that she holds onto the joy and heartbreak of her time with Roger. She keeps the subsequent violent rape at the hands of that sunnuva bastard piece of Bonnet to herself. Lizzie all but begs her to share her burdens but instead, Brianna holds them even tighter. Bree shows she is strong enough to weather any storm alone and as impressive as that might be, there is no reason for her to do it alone.
Ian retells the horrid story to Brianna, of how Bonnet attacked the family on the river and stole Claire’s ring. She takes note of this and puts this in her own personal file as “Reason 132 why I should heap more onto my breaking heart to protect my mother and Jamie and not think of how it will eventually affect me”. Yes. Brianna, you are strong, you are mighty, you can handle all of the things, but should you?
We can see the toll that the secrets are taking on Brianna as the episode goes on (I would mention the meeting with her bio-da and reunion with her mama but I would just cry again and I have Bells-Palsy and my ugly cry is a butt-ugly cry so…no). Bree is distracted, uninterested in things that would usually thrill her, flustered and easy to anger. All normal reactions that happen when we are holding onto something toxic, they poison us from the inside and start showing on the outside. Claire notices, not just because she is in tune with her child but because it is like looking at a mirror. Claire does exactly the same thing when she is hiding something, the behaviour is familiar to her.
How often do we walk through life saying “I can do it on my own.” “I don’t need help.” Or “I’m fine by myself, I’m good.”? You know what? We probably are. It’s also probably hard and would be easier with help, it likely would feel better if we said “Sure, here…thank you.”, and simply allowed the person who offered to help, to do that, help. We struggle and we carry the heavy stuff all for…what? Who does it help? Who does it end up protecting? If we answer this question honestly we will often find out the answer is – no one. In fact, sometimes, it ends up hurting someone in one way or another. We become so busy protecting people we lose focus on the important things. We become so involved in hiding our hurt that we fail to see the other things going on around us.
Brianna keeping the truth from Lizzie allowed her to create a story from the information she had. Something all of us do. We take visual cues and fill in the blanks, it is how the brain works. Brianna not telling anyone about the ring ensured no one knew who raped her. Leaving those doors open for further misunderstandings. Yes, Bree, you can do it alone – you definitely should not have. We all make mistakes, some repercussions cost more than others.
Jamie rounded out this picture for us at the end of the episode. He chose to go it alone. Demanding Lizzie not tell Claire or Brianna what was happening. Storming off to take care of who he thought was Brianna’s rapist. Just because you CAN do it alone…doesn’t mean you SHOULD.
The proof is in the pudding with this one…the pudding being poor Rogers beautiful face.
We may be strong. We may be capable. We may be all of the things we think we should be. We also are allowed to be tired. We are allowed to lean on people. We are allowed to accept help without shame or regret. We never would tell a loved one they are weak for letting us help them, we would never tell a friend they couldn’t rely on us for a hug or an ear when they needed one – so someone please tell me why do we feel we are any different? Why should we be the exception?
I wish you the happiest of New Years.
Sher (founder of the ABOotlanders)
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