image by: wikipedia.org
Do. Or do not. There is no try – Yoda
Feeling a little low on the holiday spirit this year? I am. There is just way too much nasty stuff going on right now. But, the holidays are here and there’s no avoiding them. So, if you’re feeling overwhelmed and a bit light in the spirit department perhaps this will brighten your day. It's almost Christmas and I haven’t even started shopping. I don’t know what I’m supposed to cook and serve my guests, and I don’t have a clue as to what gifts I should buy or who I need to buy for. Does that make you feel a little bit better about your situation? No? Well, maybe this story will help you get into the holiday spirit.
Not so long ago, in a galaxy that we actually live in, the cast of Star Wars did something really nice for a whole lot of sick children. Last week, Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles was invaded by Luke Skywalker, R2-D2, Darth Vader, and a few dozen Storm Troopers. Yep, Darth Vader and Luke Skywalker put their differences aside to make the galaxy a happier place - just for the day, I’m sure.
During the intergalactic visit, the hospital became a different world. In this world, the children aren’t sick, they’re Padawans and they’re being taught light-saber skills by Jedi Masters in the Jedi Training Academy. In this world, they’re taught the Jedi way of relaxing and healing through breathing exercises. And, in this world, they learn how to find and use their “inner force” to help them get better. Perhaps, the most exciting part, for me anyway, is that they were able to hang out and take pictures with the real Luke Skywalker(!), Mark Hamill. Geek moment. Sorry.
These hospital visits are the result of a philanthropic partnership between Disney and Lucasfilms in collaboration with JJ Abrams’ production company Bad Robot, called Star Wars: Force for Change. According to their website, “[The Force for Change’s] goal is to harness the strength of Star Wars and its global fandom to empower people to come together to make a positive impact on the world around them.”
In addition to the LA hospital visit, which is one of many scheduled all over the country, the initiative will focus on issues specific to children’s health. So, this year’s fundraising proceeds will benefit Unicef’s Kid Power program. Kid Power is designed to motivate kids around the world to be more “physically active so they can grow up healthy.” And because of Star Wars’ worldwide popularity, the initiative has already raised more than $4 million for Unicef.
So. Does that make you feel just a little more spirit-filled? Seriously, how can it not? Sick kids so happy that they forget they are sick? The possibility of a world where kids grow up healthy and active? It made me feel better. It made me focus on what is truly important - my family and our health. Not gifts. Not parties. Not annoying shopping centers and parking lots.
If this gave you the tiniest bit of spirit, perhaps you should join the movement yourself. Try using The Force for good and do something wonderful and touching and constructive this holiday season. Perhaps your good deeds will inspire someone else to do a good deed and it will continue to Live Long and Prosper To Infinity and Beyond! Oh, wait. Wrong movies. Sorry.
Stacy Matson is a health enthusiast from Southern California and regularly blogs on Celebrity Health for A Healthier World, as well as contributing to the Best of Best.
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