Hello my lovely Grimms ❤
I also hope you have a chance to read Crimson’s OWLS article on strength that she posted on the 10th and in the future look forward to Hazelyn’s post featuring Kuroko no Basket on the 15th.
It’s that magical time once again where I grace this blog with some OWLS love. This month’s tour topic is “Strength” and the talented Lyn from LynLynSays once again wrote the prompt.
“Your greatest weakness can become your greatest strength.”
In anime, characters struggle with inner demons or physical weaknesses that make them feel insecure and prevent them from achieving goals. Yet when these characters overcome their adversity, they can finally be able to express who they are or in other words, “Free to be Me.”
For this tour, we will be exploring anime characters that have overcome adversity due to a personal insecurity or physical weakness. It is these types of characters that many anime fans may identify as role models because fans are able to feel empathetic towards these characters’ struggles and insecurities. –LynLynSays
Today I will be viewing this prompt through the eyes of Clannad and Clannad: After Story. If you are unaware of this anime you might want to skip this post because in order to do it justice I will be revealing some serious spoilers. So if spoilers aren’t you thing I will catch you after you have watched the show!
“You shouldn’t stop like that. If you can move forward, then you should.” – Nagisa Furukawa
I have mentioned before that during high school I struggled with depression and anxiety. It was very serious. In February during my junior year of high school after my Mom was able to stop my suicide attempt I was hospitalized in the Psych Ward on a 72 hour hold.
Like Tomoya I felt very hopeless.
Tomoya meets Nagisa and this has a profound effect on how he sees the world. I was fortunate enough to find someone like that in my life as well, Adam Daniel Luing.
Much like Nagisa did for Tomoya in Clannad he provided me with hope. It was scary at times to be around someone who was so good. Who thought I was worthy of anything when I felt so unworthy of everything.
Adam was there for me everyday no questions asked. When I came back from the hospital he didn’t make me feel guilty or ashamed about it. He hugged me and told me, “I love you and I’m glad you are here today.”
From that point on he would tell me he loved me everyday and I would say it back. No matter what there he was waiting. I feel like Tomoya and Nagisa formed a very similar bond. Tomoya was directionless before he met Nagisa much like myself. I had no idea what I was going to do after high school to be honest because I wasn’t sure I would live to see graduation.
Adam did so much for me just by existing. I wanted to be there for him to. I wanted to help his dreams to become successful even if I wasn’t really sure what mine were.
We will all face times of joy and pain. This life requires that we push forward through both.
Tomoya develops similar feelings for Nagisa. It begins with him doing all that he can for her play to be a success but develops further after they get married and she decides she wants a child.
He wants to make those things happen for her because he loves her. The sense of strength Nagisa provides Tomoya may seem insignificant on the outside but it means everything to Tomoya. I feel very similar when I think of Adam. As I began my road to recovery I felt this ember inside of me. I wanted to be there for Adam in the same way he was there for me.
Just knowing Nagisa was waiting to greet him gave Tomoya the strength to walk out of the front door. I can relate to that in my relationship to Adam. No we never dated but he was my friend and we meant the world to each other, that I have always been sure of.
In After Story the unthinkable happens.
Nagisa dies during childbirth and no matter how much Tomoya wants to help her he can’t. After her death we watch Tomoya try to find the strength to move forward after the loss of Nagisa. Just facing each day is a struggle and I can relate to that.
On top of that Tomoya feels and added sense of guilt. Nagisa dies trying to give birth to their child. If he had never agreed to have a child with her maybe Nagisa would still be alive. Survivor’s guilt is a terrible thing. On the outside we can understand that death is natural. If it was Nagisa’s time then it was Nagisa’s time. If it wasn’t childbirth it would be something else.
Like Tomoya the unthinkable happened to me.
On April 17, 2007 Adam died during our track practice. He had an undetected enlarged heart and on that day it finally stopped. His heart was literally too big.
I too felt a sense of guilt. Adam did sports year round but he only did track because of me. He had played baseball throughout childhood but I talked him into running track. I thought it would be something fun we could do together. It’s not rational but like I said before Survivor’s Guilt is a terrible thing. I couldn’t help but think if he had been playing baseball this wouldn’t have happened.
On that day I saw a look on his face that I had never seen before. For the first time in all of the years we had know each other he looked at me for help and even though I wanted nothing more than to help him I couldn’t.
He wanted life and I couldn’t give that to him.
He died and I couldn’t bring him back.
Even if I tried I could never explain to you how this lost felt. It was awful. Everything just seemed… pointless.
Tomoya finds strength though and so did I.
This life is what Adam wanted. Ushio was what Nagisa wanted. How could I throw away this life that Adam wanted so desperately? How could Tomoya ignore the daughter that brought Nagisa so much happiness? In the end both Tomoya and I only had only one choice to repay the kindness that our loved ones had brought to us.
Nagisa wanted Tomoya to live and move forward. I know that this is what Adam wants for me as well.
Even in my darkest and most illogical moments I am able to remember that Adam wanted this life. He wanted it and I couldn’t give it to him. The only thing I can do is live. So everyday I experience things that Adam hoped for but will never have. He wasn’t able to graduate, go to college, get married, have children, or anything like this but I can.
This has given me strength and propelled me forward. Like Tomoya it is the love of the people in our lives whether alive or passed that gives us the ability to take that next step, even if it is painful. We look up to the stars and know that we can continue. They are our greatest source of strength.
I hope you all found meaning in this post. I would like to take this moment to say that if you have ever felt suicidal please speak to someone about it. In death there are no second chances so please talk to someone about what you are going through.
Lots of Love ❤
I do not own these images