I was sitting in the backseat of my mom's old mini van. The leather gray seats felt cool on my skin after spending the day playing outside at my grandma's house.
My little sister and I were watching the King's Speech on the little TV in our mini van.
I was 12 years old, and this was the first time that I had seen anyone talk like me on the big screen. More importantly, this was the first time that I had seen stuttering portrayed in a positive light.
Even though The King's Speech is rated R, (for all of the cussing) my mom still let me watch it. Before this movie, I had only seen stuttering characters like Porky Pig from the Looney Tunes or the stuttering characters who were not in the spotlight because they were deemed "dumb" by Hollywood's standards.
(SPOILER ALERT AHEAD!)
To put it lightly, I was transfixed by this movie. The King's Speech is a true story set during WWII, which makes it all of the more powerful.
The King's Speech stars Colin Firth, and he is portraying King George the VI (the father of Queen Elizabeth). After the passing of King George the VI's father, and after his older brother is deemed unworthy of the throne, he reluctantly becomes king. But, King George the VI has a crippling stutter. He seeks help from Lionel Louge, who works with individuals who have communication disorders.
Lionel works with King George the VI over many years, and they become very close friends. King George the VI eventually becomes a symbol of hope for his country during WWII.
The King's Speech won countless awards, but the most notable include: The Academy Award for Best Picture, Best Original Screenplay, Best Actor, and Best Director. I didn't even include all of the awards won because that would take up a whole other page.
Needless to say, The King's Speech is not one to miss.
Since this movie is 2 hours long, my sister and I weren't going to finish the movie while we were in the car. But before I knew it, we made it home. I begged my mom to let me watch the rest of the movie, and she did.
I remember sitting in the van by myself and crying when the credits started to roll through. I didn't know why I was getting so emotional, but I did know that it felt so refreshing to watch something that could relate to how I was feeling.
Fast forward about 9 years later, and I am watching The King's Speech as a 22-year-old. I started to notice different things about the movie. I pay more attention to Lionel this time than King George the VI. I still resonate with what King George the VI is saying, but I am finding new inspiration with Lionel. I'm currently in school to become a speech-language pathologist, and he is fascinating to watch because his methods are a little unorthodox. However, I do admire his persistence, confidence, and sympathy.
Even though Lionel isn't a typical therapist, he does his best with what he has.
At times, all you can do is try your best. In King George the VI's case, he is referred to as a great king and an even better inspiration, BECAUSE he tried his best during a time when everything was against him.
As someone who stutters, you are constantly trying to communicate effectively. If I am really struggling one day to get all of my words in order, I need to remind myself that at least I am trying. I am not always perfect. On some days, I may stutter more than I would like to. But at the end of they day, even if my speech is bumpy, at least I am still USING my voice.
Because like King George the VI said, "... I have a voice!", and I must remind myself that I have one too.
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