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The Process Of Acceptance Essay

1521 words - 6 pages

The road to acceptance is long, complicated, and composed of several stages necessary to finally reach healthy results. The progression to the feeling of acceptance is a key connection between the film Groundhog Day, Adam Zagajewski’s “Try to Praise the Mutilated World”, and the Elisabeth Kübler-Ross Grief Cycle. Though all are diverse, they share the same idea of understanding and admitting to the elements of reality that we cannot change, which in turn, can provide us with inner-peace and freedom.
There are several steps to acceptance, during the beginning they are dominantly shock, denial, and confusion. These steps are examined throughout Groundhog Day, the 1993 film that depicts protagonist Phil Connors’ experience becoming stuck in a time loop, and thereby forced to re-live the same day over and over. Elements of the Kübler-Ross Grief Cycle are also evident during the film, while the wisdom shared in Zagajewski’s poem becomes apparent nearer to the end. At the beginning of his experience, Phil Connors enters into a stage of shock that also occurs during the Grief Cycle: not understanding a new reality that has taken hold, and possibly needing to be reminded several times because it hasn’t sunk it yet. This is proven to be true in the film when Connors is finally forced to acknowledge that something is wrong after repeating the same day twice. He struggles to cope with his newfound reality, asking himself and those around him, “Didn't we do this yesterday?” This quote demonstrates his bewilderment, and the possibility that he may just be imagining things. After the initial shock, he faces temporary denial and confusion, which are other stages included in the Grief Cycle. He exclaims, “I need someone to give me a good hard slap in the face!” and, “What if there is no tomorrow? There wasn't one today.” This shows that he is confused about his new reality, questioning the appearance of tomorrow, and desiring for things to return to normal. Of course, Connors initially attempts to deny that anything out of the ordinary is happening, and is confused. He then tries to live out his day as normally as possible, pretending nothing has happened. Eventually, however, he realizes that his life has been forced to conform to the repetitive cycle he is experiencing.
The method of testing comes into play when people cope with challenges that they face, and it is a necessary part to any person’s progression. Later into Groundhog Day, Connors decides to take advantage of his new situation, avoiding the consequences that he should experience after his reckless actions. He happily proclaims, “No tomorrow? That would mean there would be no consequences. We could do whatever we wanted. I’m not gonna live by their rules anymore!” This declaration is proof that he is determined to have fun with the idea that he can do whatever he wants, when he wants, and nothing will change as a result. He gorges himself with food, steals, and manipulates those around him...

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