A few weeks back, my friend Alicia and I went to the see one of my all-time favorite books hit the big screen. I will be honest, when I first heard that they were making Perks of Being a Wallflower into a movie I was not a happy camper. I did not think there was any director or writer out there that could bring this movie to life and do it the justice it deserves. I am happy to say I was half wrong. The only person who could make this movie possible is the author himself. And that is what he did. (note to movie producers DO THIS MORE OFTEN!). The movie was more amazing than I ever thought it could have been and the soundtrack was perfect.
So you may be thinking who really cares?! Well me, obviously. Perks has been one of my favorite books since I read it the first time back when I was about 13 years old. There are very few books in the world that I love enough to have a part of it tattooed onto my body, Perks and Harry Potter are pretty much the ONLY ones. Charlie (the main character for those of you who have not read the book) is a character that very easy to relate to. His life is tough and he is going through a lot more than the same old “coming of age” story. He is starting high school and is just trying to find where he belongs. Through the story he finds a group of friends that help him discover who is really is. Reading this story as someone who is just starting high school in a part of town that I did not really know set off a lot of new emotions. I was scared, I was angry and most of all I was lost.
I instantly clicked with Charlie.
I spent most of the first half of my freshman year of high school hoping from social group to social group trying to make myself fit in. I could not find anywhere that I really felt like I could be myself. It was not until right before Christmas break did I really start to find my own.
Flash-forward almost 10 years later and I would still do anything for those people.
My core group of friends changed my life for the better. Of course I still had issues I mean come on what teenager doesn’t But they helped me realize that I did not have to go through them alone. I got to explore who I was and what I wanted from life without the fear of being judge or abandoned. And for someone with major trust issues, this was a big step for me. I shared just about every important event in my life with these people and I still do to this day. In about one month I will watch two of them get married and start the next journey of their lives together. And I know when the time comes for me to celebrate the next big step in my life they will be there for me.
They taught me how to live and love and just be free, and even though sometimes I still get sad and lost I will always remember the life lessons I learned with them. And the ones we are all still learning together. And throughout all of this- whenever I was down or needed a pick me up I would escape to the world of Perks and Charlie and I would relive all the things that happened in his life and somehow things just did not seem so bad.
With that said- let me leave you all with my favorite excerpt:
“These will all be stories one day and these pictures will all become old photographs and we will all become someone’s mom and dad. But right not these moments are not stories, they are happening right now. I am here and I am looking at here and she is so beautiful and I can see it that one moment when you know you aren’t a sad story, you are alive. “
– Charlie’s Last Letter