Thursday, March 10, 2016


I haven't really grown up having crushes on movie stars or famous singers. I feel like they don't see us and say, "Hey, that's the person who stood in line for hours to get tickets to my show, " or "That person flew to London to buy our import album before it was available in the states," or whatever we may do to support them; so why should I know about where they went to college or which color is their favorite.

However, James Franco (and don't forget about Jimmy Fallon) might make me blush a little bit when I see them. The movie 127 HOURS starring James Franco is based on a true story. I saw the film in theaters and thought it was so good. (If you haven't seen it, go watch it now. Wait, watch it after you finish reading this post.)
Turns out 127 HOURS isn't just a movie with an adorable leading actor. It is the true story of Aron Ralston's remarkable adventure to save himself after a boulder crashes on his hand and traps him in an isolated canyon in Utah. Today, I was able to meet Aron today as he spoke about this experience and how he spent 5 days examining his life and trying to survive. 
He started out saying he doesn't have his right hand any longer, but he didn't lose anything from this experience. He feels like instead he gained things from the event. He said that our boulders, whatever they may be, can either be pushed away by us or we can embrace them and be thankful for them. WOW, right?! He is an incredible person who suggested that we think of "hell" as a hot, crowded, noisy place yet he felt a personal hell that was just the opposite in that canyon. He found himself in a cold, dark, lonely, quiet hole where he was trapped. To help him get out, he had a premonition of sorts that woke him up to a realization that finding love could help him survive. I understand this - I had this same feeling when my brother Tim passed away. I too found myself in a lonely spot that made me realize I had a love that I needed to pursue and embrace whether it worked out or not. I guess we had a similar boulder.
After this experience, and having cut off his own hand, Aron returned to the outdoors and has trekked and climbed several different mountains. He reminded me that as we all have experiences in life (hopefully not as dramatic) we enrich our lives. The thing we need to remember tis hat we are here to enrich the lives of others along the way as well. He definitely enriched my life as he spoke today and I am thankful for the opportunity to meet and learn from him.

*I might have secretly wished James Franco would've come out on the stage to surprise Aron.*