Who says you learn nothing from TV? Almost everybody thinks this way, although I understand that most TV shows and movies are indeed a work of fiction, you can still learn from it.
Watching the Japanese drama the Yamato Nadeshiko Shichi Henge, adapted from the manga The Wallflower, I came across an interesting truth, one that only one person has said to me and it was in the form of an apology. This person, with one sentence made years of ignorance, hatred, and mixed feelings for one another go away. It was the only time someone has ever apologized to me without using the word forgiveness, and not many people have apologized to me to begin with. This person was my sister. But, let’s go back to the drama first, and explain a little bit about it.
The drama Yamato Nadeshiko Shichi Henge, is about four extremely good-looking boys that are given the job to turn a gothic, shy, frightful girl, into a lady. There is Takano Kyohei, the mainly one; Oda Takenaga, the smart one; Toyama Yukinojo, the one everyone wants to smuggle with; and Morii Ranmaru, the lady’s man. Nakahara Sunako –the girl in question- can’t be around beautiful people, especially Kyohei whom she calls “bright” and hits in the head every time she is near him. This “bright” situation goes on the whole drama, and eventually Kyohei is able to block her attack with his hand. With each episode, the transformation of Sunako gets closer. However, this transformation is far from being a physical one. Our four heros help Sunako gain confidence in her self and accept who she is. My favorite part of the drama is in the last episode when Kyohei wants to kiss Sunako and to this he has to lure her closer to his face with a skull so that she doesn’t do the “bright” attack and ruin the whole thing. Good strategy Kyohei! I thought it was the cutest kiss ever.
I truly enjoyed this drama, and felt like a teenager all over again. Funny, light-hearted, and full of teachings, something teenagers should watch instead of wasting their time having sex and getting pregnant -there is plenty of time for that later. But never mind that, let’s get to what I learned from the drama and my sister:
Growing up I was taught to forgive and forget, I learned to forgive, but I hardly forget things. I remember the few times my sister –who lived in Havana- came to visit Santiago –where I was brought up- and refused to meet me. We grew up aware of each other existence, but never meeting in person until in 1995 when I was coming to live in U.S. and my dad asked her if she wanted to meet me, as it would probably be her last chance. We met, and that was that.
Years later, in 2006, I went back to visit and spend time with my father. My sister was living with him at the time; so, it was inevitable that we would meet again and live together for two weeks. I was expecting her to act cold towards me; I was even expecting her to treat me badly, or say something ill about my mother; what I never expected was love and care, and an apology… well, something that sounded like one.
Talking about us in my father’s tiny bit of a room, she said this to me: When you are a child, you think whatever your parents tell you, must be what it is. You think they are always right. Unfortunately, or not, later on you learn how wrong they can be. With this, I understood what she was telling me, and we became friends without saying much on the matter after that. In the drama, Kyohei is having a bad relationship with his parents, and feels its his fault. The bar tender who is also a friend of the boys, says the same thing my sister told me, only with different words. Pretty much it boils down to this; parents are the truest heroes to a child. Therefore, the only word a child will ever acknowledge is that which the parent speaks.
This is one true statement, and I will forever remember it. I don’t feel sad that me and my sister didn’t get to know each other earlier. I don’t think me unprivileged of growing up without siblings anymore. On the contrary, it makes me wonder; if my sister would have never dislike me, then we would have met at an early age, and she would have never had to say this to me. Things do happen for a reason, call me crazy, but I believe so even more. I believe we need to struggle to be able to understand things better, and become better people. Whether we learned from our troubles or not, is a different story.
Now, I never expected to hear this again and even less from a drama. It’s funny how some people continue to say how TV and books are all fiction and shouldn’t be taken into consideration, but they don’t realize that in that fiction there is a lot of true.
Yamato Nadeshiko stands for personification of an ideal woman. In Yahoo answers I found that it is also referred to as a woman with desirable traditional attributes. Also, it is believed that the name Yamato Nedeshiko comes from the Japanese Nadeshiko flower. Shinchi Henge refers to transformation of a ghost like person or somebody who is into horror movies. This is a great find, to me at least, since I’m very much interested in Japanese language but don’t have the time to learn it properly.
My sister is my own yamato nadeshiko.