My Louisiana Sky

with Juliette Louis

Viewed May 18, 2002

This was a wonderful, placid, nonviolent movie that contained a LOT of themes for us to work with in our discussion. In fact, we formulated the questions faster than we usually do, even though we formulated more of them than usual (eleven instead of our normal eight).

We started with a take-off on Question #8, when several of us talked about how our parents--and mothers in particular--had been emotionally distant and disconnected from us. We talked about how disappointing that was for us, and how we had worked hard for many years to try to connect with our mothers. Eventually, though, we decided that we were causing ourselves pain by trying to change our mothers, and so since then we've been working on just accepting them exactly where they are and letting go of our desperate need to change them.

This disconnection and lack of acceptance seems to have made it difficult to spontaneously express our feelings (Question #4), to love unconditionally (Question #3), to deal with abrupt change (Question #9), and to be willing to take the risks necessary to change and grow in an ongoing way (Question #10). However, one participant described eloquently how she had been affected by difficult experiences with her mother, and yet decided after her mother's death that she needed now to actively and deliberately choose how she was going to live her own life. She decided that she didn't want to become a bitter old woman, and so she started asking herself what it would look like if she chose a different lifestyle instead (Question #11) and became emotionally healthy and assertive. Personally, I found myself very moved by her story.

Here are the questions:


  1. How did it affect me when someone came through for me unexpectedly?
  2. How has having contrasting experiences helped me to know myself better?
  3. What keeps me from loving unconditionally?
  4. How can I allow myself to spontaneously express my feelings?
  5. How grounded am I?
  6. Where do I draw the line on being different?
  7. How do I deal with loss without losing myself?
  8. In what ways have I closed myself off from connecting with people that I have loved, and why?
  9. How do I deal with abrupt change?
  10. How willing am I to change and grow in an ongoing way?
  11. What has drawn me to choose one lifestyle over another?