Thursday, May 24, 2012

A Sad Day

So this is how Democracy dies...with thunderous applause.  Padme, ROTS

I was going to write this entry yesterday, but I could not completely form my thoughts at such a late hour.  Yesterday, May 23, 2012, officially marked the end of an era of discussion and debate about our beloved saga; an era of fun times and good friends; an era of memories.  Sometime yesterday afternoon/evening, the blogs at became no more.  They were there in the morning and then they were gone...sent to the netherworld of the Force (aka cyberspace).  It was truly a sad day for those of us who were once active members of the blogging community.  This weekend also marks the five year anniversary of Star Wars Celebration IV...the weekend of all weekends.

Upon discovering the finality of the blogosphere, I could not help but think of that scene in Episode III where Padme and the other Senators of the Republic listened as Palpatine declared an end to the Republic and the birth of the Empire.  The shock and sadness on her face said it all as she said "So this is how Democracy dies...with thunderous applause."  The life she once knew was no more...the Dark times were upon them.  As the night went on, she realized that her husband and father of her child(ren) had become a part of the "Emperor's" new plans...that he had joined the Dark Side.  Things were changing rapidly for her and she did not know how to adjust to the times.

Now, unlike Padme's situation, we, the bloggers, had plenty of warning about the looming shut down.  Those of us who maintained active blogs on the site at one time or another had received e-mail notification that the end was near.  However, this did not make it any less painful for us, as the community had meant so much to so many of us.  Many of us formed friendships there that influenced many parts of our lives.  Some of these friendships have grown, while some have faded.  Whatever the reason or season for the friendhips formed, they all served a purpose...and they all had a common foundation in Star Wars.  While I admit that many of the friendships I had formed in my time on the blogs have not continued, I cannot forget all of the good times we all had...from dinners with friends to Star Wars themed sleep overs and parties to traveling across the country for conventions or other gatherings.  The memories of these times will last forever.

As I close this entry, I want to thank all of those bloggers who influenced me and my writing and with whom I share many memories (even though we may no longer maintain contact):  Viagoange2, anakinside1, amidalooine, Oboe-Wan, Kenobi Fan, Darth Hiram, Fan4Yrs, momof2youngpadawan, jedprincess77, jedi pug1, ewananhaydenfan, jedi melinda wolf, jedi master mina, granny wan, stooge.  I am sure I am missing many others, but these are the bloggers I can recall at this point.  Wherever life has taken us, we will always have Star Wars.

May the Force Be With You All!!

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Good Friends and Great Fun in a Galaxy Not So Far Away...

Originally posted on November 20, 2007

Hello everyone out there in blogsville!! Wow...I thought my life would calm down a bit so that I could write more, but I was wrong.   I have been able to stop by on occasion and check out what has been going on and leave the occasional comment...but I would like to be around more.

Enough of that now...I am not here to complain about my time constraints and the realities of "real life". I am here today to reminisce about a weekend I recently shared with some good friends...a weekend filled with Star Wars. I know that JMW and JediPug1 have already written about their experiences...but I just have to share mine with all of you.

Well, it all started a couple of weekends before the big gathering took place. I was itching for a short get-away, and noticed that I just happened to have a long weekend off guessed it...the weekend that everyone was gathering in Chicago to visit the Where Science Meets Imagination exhibit (yes, I am actually wearing real clothes and not a costume  ) at the Museum of Science and Industry. I began could I not go?   So, I contacted a few friends, figured out when a good time for me to arrive and leave the city would be, and booked my flight/hotel/museum pass. The excitement was almost too much to bear...and the wait was even worse (even though it was a short one).

Finally, the day of departure arrived...Friday, November 9th!! I had worked the two nights before (two long 12-hour nights), so I planned to leave in the afternoon so that I could get some sleep. I think I may have gotten two hours, but that may even be pushing it.   The effect of my lack of sleep was short-lived, however, as I arrived at the airport, checked in my luggage, and made my way toward the gate, coffee in hand (after the security check-point, of course). I was just a few short hours away from meeting up with everyone again...this time for something on a much smaller scale than CIV.

I arrived in Chicago safely and caught a cab to my hotel downtown. After I checked in, I only had a short time (maybe 15min) to set everything down, check out the room, and freshen up before our fellow blogger Nobby was to contact me. You see, Nobby, his lovely and very nice wife, DarthKerfuffle, and greenandwhitejedi were picking me up to head out to jediprincess77's concert!!   The Force was with us, and we made it...but barely. Navigating downtown Chicago, in the middle of Friday night, rush hour traffic proved to be a challenge...even with the assistance of a rearview mirror compass, two maps, and an I-phone.  I think G&WJ was a little scared by our navigating skills.     But...what better way to get to know people than to get lost in a relatively unfamiliar city  Once we were able to figure out our way, we cruised along and made it to the town with about a half an hour (or slightly less) to spare before the singing was to begin. As usual, JP77's performance was excellent  ...I was just so happy I was able to make it there. Once it was all over, her father was kind enough to give us a ride back into the city...and I settled in for the night.

I woke surprisingly early on Saturday morning, and I felt fairly rested. I just hung around and did a few things before venturing out to find my way to the bus stop (much cheaper than a cab). However, this was a challenge, for the street that I was supposed to get picked up on was blocked off for construction  ...there was no way a bus was going to get down that way!! I stopped into a nearby store, but the guy had no idea where the bus would stop. He tried to find a phone number for the transit authority, but was unsuccessful in his attempt  . I left the store and wandered down the street a bit more...getting nervous that I would not make it to the museum in time. I found an available cab and made it there just in time!! I was soon united with everyone, and we made our way toward the exhibit.

Although I had seen this exhibit before when it was at COSI in Columbus, OH last summer, it was still exciting to be able to see it again!! When I went before, I was alone, so I could not do this...or this...or this...or this...or even this. I do have other pics, but have decided not to post them here. And before anyone asks...yes, I did take some close-up photos of the costumes for Padmé and Leia  (Leia's so that I can re-do parts of mine in the future and Padmé's so that I can make that one day). I know...I am obsessed...and I am not afraid to admit it.

I am going to wrap this up since it has become much longer than I thought it would. After going through the museum and doing a little shopping (yes...I bought a few things), we all went out to dinner and, at least I, had a wonderful time socializing and celebrating a birthday!! After all the food was either consumed or boxed, we said our good-byes and parted ways. I returned to my room, packed my things, and went to sleep early, as I had an early shuttle to catch. Needless to say, I was completely exhausted when I returned home...luckily I had an extra day to rest up before returning to work. I just want to thank all of you who were there for allowing me to join you and for all of the fun!!

Oh...and I just happen to have finished another costume!!

I hope everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving!! May the Force Be With You...Always

A Royal Weekend

Originally posted on June 1, 2007

Wow!! I cannot believe that it has been a week and a day since we descended on LA for the biggest party in the galaxy!! So many memories were made while waiting in lines, during meal-times, and during events...and I cannot express just how grateful I am to have attended such an event. The people I met were some of the greatest I have ever encountered...and we shared a love for the same thing. I truly felt in my "element" at CIV, and nothing can change that feeling.

OK...I have seen several entries on others' various experiences, but not so many from those who attended in costume. Let me tell you, the experience of a SW Celebration in costume cannot be least in my opinion. It truly is amazing the people who will stop and ask for a photo of or with you, who will stop you and comment on your work, or who will stop you and ask for a photo of you with their children. There is no better feeling in the world to me than knowing that others appreciate the hard work and dedication I put into my costume or that of the kids who look to you as one of their idols and just want to say Hi.

Here is a break-down of the costumes I day and with a brief synopsis of what happened.

Thursday, May 24th

I wore Princess Leia's Ceremonial Gown from ANH. Essentially, this was a last-minute costume I made more or less to wear to the Meet & Greet. I actually enjoyed wearing this one, as it was simple, elegant, and fairly comfortable. I had a few "wardrobe malfunctions" during the time I wore this...but nothing that could not be fixed. My hair did not want to stay in place (it kept falling down to the base of my head) since it was so heavy; the snaps on my belt broke, and I ended up using safety pins that an artist so graciously had on him to hold it together; and a seam ripped even more than it was (I had a small hole in the seam before I even put it on). Wardrobe malfunctions aside, many people complimented me on this, saying how it fit me so well. One guy even said it was nice to see a red-headed Leia  This is my favorite pic in this costume. The R2 was just "sitting" there for people who wanted photos with him...and, once this one was snapped, he bleeped happily and rolled away. It was the cutest thing  I also could not help but pose with the Jabba hanging out in the Exhibit Hall. I still can't get his laughing out of my head  By the time of the Meet & Greet, I had had it with my hair, so I took the extensions out and went with my natural hair for the rest of the evening. I'll have to work on figuring out how to get the pieces to stay for the next time I wear it!!

Friday, May 25th

Today was picnic day!! I had to get up early for a Rebel Legion photo shoot, and of course was running a little behind. JP77 and I (I hope she doesn't mind me posting this) were going to this together, and I took a little longer to get dressed than planned. Since the shuttle was not at the hotel when we left, we decided to walk to the Holiday Inn to catch the Legion. We arrived at that hotel just as the end of the line was we hopped in at the end and followed our fellow Rebels to the convention center. The shoot was only regret was not having my camera out to snap pics of the individual groups of members (i.e. Jedi, pilots, fleet troops, Endor troops, EU, etc.) Oh will be posted of the shoot on another site.

I thought I was going to have another day with hair problems, because one of my buns would not stay in place. However, I was eventually able to get the bun to stay, and had no further problems the remainder of the day. A few people snapped my pic this day, but fewer than the day before...probably since I spent most of my day in lines rather than walking around. I was able to pose with Elvis Trooper , Vader, and a few other costumers (both RL and non-RL)

Saturday, May 26th

This is the day I debuted my Bespin outfit!! However, this debut wasn't without it's snags along the way. I had stitched the cloak together on Tuesday night so that I knew it would be together prior to my departure. My plan was to remove stabilizer (the paper stuff I drew the embroidery pattern on) after packing on Wednesday and on the plane on Thursday. You know what they say about the best laid plans...I did not get much of anything done on Wednesday besides some cleaning and packing. I worked my hardest while on the plane, but there was just too much left to do. I took the cloak with me on Friday and worked on it in line...entertaining a few fellow fans in the process  . Actually, I think they were amazed by my work more than what I was doing at the time. Well, we didn't get back from the Opening Ceremonies until late, and I thought I would be up all night working on this thing. I only made it until 2:30am and realized that it would be impossible to remove every last piece of stabilizer. I had a breakdown while the others slept, and hit the pillow myself.

I was planning on attending an ANH Leia photo shoot that morning, but decided not to go. The girls (VA2, AS1, & MO2YP) were great with my continuing sadness over this costume. They encouraged me to shape what I could and work on it in line. This made me feel I tore much of the bigger parts off, leaving the rest to be worked on in line. I was not 100% happy going out in an incomplete costume, but I was told by many that they could not tell that it wasn't finished!! Perfection...the life of a costumer

This was such a comfortable costume to wear...and I am glad that I decided to go with it anyway. I had hoped to get Carrie Fisher's autograph on Friday, but was not able to do I got in her line this day!! It was totally unintentional on my part to get her autograph while in a Leia outfit...but it was also kinda neat. She didn't say anything to me about it, but she did sign something very nice to her pic!! I got a few other autographs, and was on my way.

Sunday, May 27th

Fan Club Breakfast and Costume Contest day!! Well, since I knew I would not have time to change between the breakfast and arriving at the convention center, I decided to wear my costume to breakfast. This really was the longest day for me in costume...and the day I wore the heaviest costume I had!! This was the day I wore Padme's Purple Loyalist Committee gown (the official costume contest photo...don't I look like I've been through the wringer?) I did not see too many of throughout the weekend. I did not put on the headpiece or choker until I arrived in the convention center, since I knew I would be in them all day...and the costume contest did not start until around 4pm. When the day was over, I was in costume for 16 hours, and in headpiece for 12 head was killing me!!

Anyway...both Jay Laga'aia and Jeremy Bulloch loved my work. Their comments to me were probably amongst the top highlights of the day. Mr Laga'aia mentioned how he stood near this costume...and signed his pic with "Beautiful Costume, "   while Mr. Bulloch couldn't get over the headpiece...he even stood up to get a closer look at it  . Throughout the day, several people stopped and asked for my photo...and I heard several children say "Look, there's Padme' from Attack of the Clones"  . My heart just melted every time I heard that!! Oh, I even had time to pose with an Anakin I had met at LAX...I had promised him a pic when I was in that gown, and we just happened to run into each other!!

This was also the day of the costume contest!! Although I did not place in the top three, I had a blast!! The Glorious Gowns category (the one in which I competed) had some pretty stiff competition...and we all picked out the winner before the show even started (she totally deserved it)!! I could tell the emcee was impressed with my write-up...although hearing vocal deflections on stage is totally different than hearing them from the audience. A very nice Darth Maul even stopped to tell me that the brooch on the back of the gown (the one holding the overcoat sleeves) was falling off...and he didn't want me to be docked points for that!! It's great how we helped each other out, even though we were competing against one another!!

Monday, May 28th

A non-costume day!! I left LA this day, and decided it would be too much of a hassle to dress for just a short couple of hours. It truly felt strange to head to the convention center in "regular" clothes!! However, my hair was thanking me for not putting it through any more torture  I also believe that the rest of my body was thanking me as well...since my feet were slightly blistered, my heels were scraped a little, and my shoulders were sore from carrying myself properly. I so do not regret dressing in costume the other was an experience I will not soon forget. I also loved seeing the other costumes, and chatting it up with my fellow costumers and getting tips. Although I did miss out on some panels, I do not mind so much since I was doing something I love to do...dress in character!!

I hope I didn't bore any of you with these details. It truly is a different experience when you are dressed as a character as opposed to being dressed in every-day gear. There is so much more I could say about the con itself, but I won't. I wanted to focus on the experience of attending in costume...and, as I said before, what an experience it was

To Be or Not to Be...

Originally posted on June 30, 2008

For over a thousand generations the Jedi Knights were guardians of peace and justice in the Old Republic...before the Dark Times...before the Empire--Obi-Wan Kenobi, Ep IV

Words spoken by one of the last remaining Jedi Knights of old...Obi-Wan Kenobi. Ironically, these words were spoken to the son of former Jedi Knight Anakin Skywalker...Luke. All Luke wanted was to know more about his father, whom he thought was a pilot on a spice freighter...but soon discovered that he was really a Jedi Knight. I can only imagine the thought going through Luke's head at that moment...Jedi Knights...weren't they traitorous to the Empire...weren't they what led to the fall of the Old Republic? Sitting and talking with a Jedi Knight was sure to dispell some of those misconceptions for Luke...especially as time passed and he realized the true nature of the Force and what it was to be a Jedi.

Who exactly were these Jedi Knights...besides the guardians of peace and justice. What kind of training did these Jedi Knights undergo to obtain and maintain their title? Well...the Jedi Knights were beings from across the galaxy who underwent years of vigorous training. To become a Knight in the Jedi Order, one must have the deepest the life is not an easy one. In the days of the Old Republic, the Jedi would search the galaxy for infants exhibiting strong Force potential...these infants would be brought back to the Temple and undergo years of training, moving through the ranks of youngling to padawan to Knight to Master. Next to being a Master, the rank of Jedi Knight was one of the most independent (relatively speaking) positions within the Order. As a Knight, a Jedi had the freedom to come and go from the temple as he or she pleased. As a Knight, a Jedi no longer had to report to his or her account for his or her whereabouts or actions.

For many Jedi, the attainment of Knighthood was the culmination of years of hard work and discipline...with the attainment of Master often taking many more years beyond that. However, for some Jedi, becoming a Knight was not enough. Take Anakin for example...he attained Jedi Knighthood in an unconventional way...during wartime and under great need for more knights throughout the galaxy. Although this was a great achievement for Anakin, Jedi Knighthood should have been a huge stepping stone for Masterhood...but it was not. The Council maintained Anakin's status as a Jedi Knight despite his appointment to the Council by Palpatine...a huge blow to his ego. He wanted to be a Master...namely to obtain access to the "Master's Only" section of the Archives...but he was being held to the rank of Jedi Knight until the Masters could trust him. Ironic, though, that in a time where deceit was rampant, the Jedi should have placed a bit more trust in this Knight...or at least have given him more support.

Enough on that, as I have discussed that before...the Jedi Knights *were* the guardians of peace and justice in the Old Republic. Too bad Palpatine had to take advantage of the trusting nature of the Jedi and use Anakin, now Vader, to help destroy the Jedi Knights. Only a couple of decades later did Palpatine meet his demise...when then Jedi Knight Luke Skywalker helped his father to return to the light and destroy the Emperor.

A Still Moment in a Galaxy Far, Far Away...

Originally posted on January 21, 2008

There is much fear in you...Skywalker. You have hate; you have anger...but you don't use them. Dooku to Anakin (ROTS)

I can feel your anger. It gives you focus...makes you powerful. Palpatine to Anakin (ROTS)

I hate you!! Anakin/Vader to Obi-Wan (ROTS)

 You were my brother...I loved you.Obi-Wan to Anakin/Vader (ROTS) may be wondering *what is she talking about here?!*   Well, I am referring to this particular *Still Moment in a Galaxy Far, Far Away..*

The *Battle of Heroes,* Anakin versus Obi-Wan, one of the most important battles of our beloved saga, was much more than just a battle between the two people we see on the screen. This was a battle between Anakin and Vader...a *Hero's Battle* of sorts. Anakin was always full of passion...a passion that allowed him to be the Jedi he was. It motivated him to do things throughout his entire life. As the Dark Side clouded the minds of the citizens of the Old Republic, it added fuel to Anakin's fire. His passion, his "hatred and anger," allowed him to be successful in battle. He channeled these Dark Side emotions when confronting an opponent...and was successful. However, as per the Jedi Code, use of the Dark Side was discouraged, as the powers were considered *unnatural*. But Anakin had fueled these emotions, these feelings, all his life. It was what made him...him.

As Anakin faced Obi-Wan, a fire was ignited within. He was now Darth Vader, a Sith Lord, one who was "all-powerful." Nobody could stop him...not Obi-Wan, not Palpatine, not even himself. He felt invincible...ignited by an energy for which he had long desired. Not even the river of hot lava below him could stop him.

But, just as the passion burned inside, so did the fire that fueled it. Anakin's passion was so strong that he would eventually get burned...and he did. He let his, well, arrogance get the best of him (as much as I hate to admit that  ). The previously feeling of invincibility was cut short by those he thought could not do so...namely Obi-Wan and himself. Obi-Wan may have literally cut him down, but the continued fire that fueled the hatred toward this one-time led to him erupting in flames. The angrier he became, the faster he burned. But...out of that hatred and anger came a plea for help...a subtle change of expression that indicated that Anakin was still there...that he had not been completely lost to the Dark Side. However...Obi-Wan turned, picked up Anakin's lightsaber, and walked away...leaving him to breed even more hate and anger toward those he once loved.

Backing up to Dooku's words to Anakin...he just may have been on to something. Sure, it was a ploy to bring Anakin closer to the Dark Side. However, as one of my good friends pointed out the other night, we all have anger and hatred within us. Sometimes we allow it to surface, but most of us know how to work through it. Anakin, however, always had to suppress that, and was never really taught the proper way of working through it. As a slave on Tatooine, he had to control his reactions or risk punishment by Watto. As a Jedi, he was taught to control his emotions and channel them through the Force. He was never really allowed to just "be" work through his emotions and conflicts. We all know what happened when Anakin was finally pushed over the edge on which he was so tediously balancing...he lost everything and everyone near and dear to him.

*Santa Anakin*

Originally posted on December 18, 2007

Hello there blogsville!! 

After yesterday's BFD festivities, I thought I would make a contribution as well. Actually, I decided to try my hand a writing a parody...hopefully it came out ok.   Just let me tell you, though...this is way more difficult than I could have imagined, and you probably will not see another form me for a looooong time. My hat, errr headpiece  , goes off to all of you who are able to write these parodies and limericks.

This is to the tune "Santa Baby"...a song I just cannot get out of my head!!

Santa Ani, slip a starship under the tree...for me.
I've been an awful good girl.
Santa Ani so hurry out of hyperspace tonight.

Santa Ani, an Old Republic Jedi Starfighter, light yellow...
And I'll wait up for you, dear.
Santa Ani, so hurry out of hyperspace tonight.

Think of all the fun I missed
Think of all the Jedi that I haven't kissed
Next year I can be just as good
If you check off my BFD list.

Santa Ani, I want a droid,
Really to fill a void
I've been an angel all year
Santa Ani, so hurry out of hyperspace tonight.

Santa Ani, there's something I really do need,
The deed, to the Lake Retreat house
Santa Ani, so hurry out of hyperspace tonight.

Santa Ani, fill my stocking with lots of treats, and meet
Me underneath the mistletoe
Santa Ani, so hurry out of hyperspace tonight.

Come and trim my BFD tree
With some decorations found at the Royal Palace
I really do believe in you
Let's see if you believe in me

Santa Ani, forgot to mention one little thing, a ring
And I don't mean through the Holo
Santa Ani, so hurry out of hyperspace tonight

Santa Ani...hurry out of hyperspace tonight
Santa Ani...hurry out of hyperspace tonight
Santa Ani...hurry...tonight....

I hope you all enjoyed this little rendition of mine  and that you are having a wonderful BFD week here on the blogs

Dark and Difficult Times Lie Ahead...Advice from an Old...Wizard?

Originally posted on November 29. 2007

Hello everyone in blogsville. I realized last week when I was writing my entry summarizing my trip to Chicago to see the Where Science Meets Imagination exhibit that it had been quite some time since I had written an entry not related to a trip, event, or costuming experience. In other words, I have not written an entry related to my thoughts and ponderings on the Star Wars universe since sometime before Celebration IV.   

I have been thinking about this entry for some time now, having started writing it at one point but stopping completely because I did not like the direction it was taking. So, I took a break from it...a longer-than-expected break at that...and decided that it was now time to give this another try.

Several months back, I was watching the movie Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, when a line spoken by Dumbledore to Harry struck me as so very appropriate to the Prequel era of our beloved saga. It really got me to thinking how things would have turned out differently if Obi-Wan had uttered these words to the GFFA would have fared had Anakin listened to Obi-Wan instead of what to his own thoughts/fears and to Palpatine.

By now you are probably wondering to which line I am referring. Well, this line would be...**Dark and difficult times lie ahead. Soon we must all choose between what is right and what is easy**. Kind of chilling, huh? The first several times I saw Goblet of Fire, I paid little attention to this particular line. For some reason, this one time I noticed the line and was struck with the idea to put it in a blog...and have struggled with it since.

I am not going to get into the nitty-gritty details of the Harry Potter series, but those of us who know the story know what path he chose...he chose to fight, to take the more difficult road. He trusted Dumbledore to help him down the right path to do what must be done.

The same cannot be said for Anakin, however  ...he chose the easier, more seductive path of the Dark Side. For some reason he did not fully trust Obi-Wan, or himself for that matter, to guide him through these difficult times...he decided to listen to his fears and the promises Palpatine made to him. He let his fears and insecurities take over his rationality to the point he refused to stay patient long enough to accomplish his goals/desires the *right* way...the Jedi way.

At the same time Anakin was engulfed in his personal turmoil, the galaxy was undergoing a turmoil of its own...created by none other than Palpatine himself. Residents of the GFFA were looking to their leader for guidance, trusting in his judgment. Only a few select Senators, including Padmé, were willing to fight for Democracy, for a peaceful resolution to the war. The others, however, were willing to go along with whatever Palpatine decided was best for the galaxy...and we all know where that got them

They (the Senators), like Anakin, were willing to take the quick and easy path, with the gravest of results: the dark times had arrived and would engulf the galaxy for the next twenty-plus years. Luckily, Luke, one of two beacons of hope for the galaxy, was able to overcome his temptations and turned the tide back to the Light and saved the galaxy from those dark and difficult times.

Like our heroes from the GFFA, we all face dark and difficult times at various points in our lives. Sometimes we take the more difficult route and work through them, while at other times we may take the easier route and give in to the temptation. If these easier routes lead us further down that dark path, we hopefully are able to overcome this, learn from our choices/mistakes, and use the lessons from these experiences the next time we are faced with a difficult situation. Sometimes we can work through these situations ourselves, but, most of the time we need support and guidance from mentors and friends. Maybe that is why Luke was successful where Anakin was not...the strong presence of mentors and friends. At least that is what I like to think.

Would things have turned out differently in the GFFA had Anakin taken the time to listen to what Obi-Wan, Yoda, and the others had to say rather than giving in to his fears/insecurities and the promises uttered by Palpatine? If Anakin had had a mentor he truly trusted, as Harry did, would darkness have enveloped the galaxy for two decades? I tend to think things would have been greatly many ways.

However, I want to hear what you all have to think about this before I reveal my thoughts...would things have been different; how would things have been different? Does having a good/strong mentor and great friends help one to overcome the difficult times, the darkness?

I hope everyone is having a safe and happy Holiday season so far. I look forward to reading about what you all have to say

May the Force Be With You...Always

Always an Apprentice...Never a Master

Originally posted on April 12, 2007

A little over a week ago, my friend Hansgirl3 wrote a wonderful entry about the final duel between Luke and Vader in ROTJ. In this, she discussed how Vader was protecting Luke from the same mistakes he had made...and how he was finally able to make that decision to break the chains of the Dark Side and return to the Light as Anakin. This got me to thinking about Anakin and his life...from the little boy on Tatooine to the grown Jedi Padawan to the Galactic Hero. In essence, he truly never had complete control over his life...he was, in some way, *always an Apprentice, but never a Master*. It took the love of his son, the product of the love between him and Padme', to make him realize that he could, essentially, control his destiny...and become a Master of his life. 

As a slave on Tatooine, Anakin had little control over his life...he answered to Watto, or whoever was his Master at the time. When Qui-Gon, Padme' and crew embarked on the desolate planet, hope for a better life for him was a possibility. Although he "won" his freedom in the podrace, the choice to leave was never fully his, as he thought he did what was right for both him and his mother. Once permission was granted for Obi-Wan to train him, Anakin was, once again, a "slave" of sorts...he was a Jedi Padawan, swearing an oath to serve and protect the galaxy, being apprenticed to a Jedi Knight for his training. For years Anakin trained under Obi-Wan, waiting for the day he could face the trials and become a Knight...a Jedi with a little more freedom. However, the Jedi Council had the final say in whether and when he would achieve this status, so it was another "waiting game." Finally, the day came when he was granted Knighthood.

Although he reached Knighthood, Anakin wanted nothing more than to become a honor of which he felt he deserved. It was another "waiting game" with the Council, and Anakin became impatient...especially after he learned that there was a way to save Padme'. Sadly the information was restricted to those with Master status. Then, Palpatine "pounced" on a vulnerable Anakin, offering the promise of preventing death...but only through learning the ways of the Dark Side.

This promise of *more* just lured Anakin further toward the Dark...until he finally gave in and said *I pledge myself to your teachings.* Again, Anakin became an apprentice...just when he was so close to obtaining Master status with the Jedi. Now, however, he would find it more difficult to be a Master of the Dark...not with Palps in power/control. He realized that he was completely dependent on Palps for survival and there was nothing he could do. Hope was lost...until Luke reappeared in his life.

Luke...a symbol of hope, of love, of a life thought lost long ago. The wall Vader built around the life that was Anakin began to crumble, and Anakin began to re-emerge. Although Vader said to Luke *it is too late for me, son,* he (Vader) must have realized that there may still be a glimmer of hope for him. When he saw his son going down the path he once did, Anakin could no longer stand back...he blocked Luke from striking down Palps and, therefore, from going down that dark path. When he witnessed Luke standing ground against Palps despite the "promise" of certain death, Anakin could not just stand by any longer and watch another part of him be destroyed. He resurfaced to save his son, a symbol of his love, and suffered in the process. Not all was lost, though...Anakin gained control of his life for the first time, and became his own *Master.*

Any thoughts? Hopefully I made some sense, as I have been up all night working.

Have a wonderful day...and May the Force Be With You All

The Power of Two

Originally posted on March 23, 2007

We must take them somewhere where the Sith will not feel their presence. Obi-Wan, ROTS

Split up they should be. Yoda, ROTS

To protect you both from your father, you were hidden from him when you were born. The Emperor knew, as I did, that, if Anakin were to have any offspring...they would be a threat to him. Obi-Wan to Luke, ROTJ

Hello everyone out there in blogsville  It has been quite a while since I have blogged  , but I am back today!! Real life has its way of preventing one from spending time doing things that used to fit in one's schedule. I have been busy at work and with working on my costumes for CIV, but I could not pass up the opportunity to write an entry for Anakin Week

I noticed something not too long ago while watching the saga on HBO...and it sort of ties in with the lines mentioned above. It seems, to me, that Obi-Wan and Yoda were on to something when they discussed *splitting up* the twins after they were born. Could they have known that, if Luke and Leia were to remain together, that Anakin/Vader would be able to sense their presence and seek them out and do who knows what? And, when Obi-Wan mentioned that *the Emperor knew, as I did, that if Anakin were to have any offspring, they would be a threat to him,* about whom was he speaking, really...Palpatine or Anakin? Was the *power of two* together greater than the *power of two* separated? And did this power help Anakin to feel the power of lost love and break the chains of the Dark Side and destroy all Palpating had worked for?

Throughout the OT, Vader was able to sense the presence of Force-sensitive/powerful beings (i.e. Obi-Wan on the first Death Star). However, when it came to sensing Luke and Leia, it appeared that he best sensed their presence when they were together. I am sure that, in ANH, that Obi-Wan's Force presence was so much more powerful than either Luke or Leia's that Vader was more in-tune with him than with the twins. Yes, he said *the Force is strong with this one* when Luke was about to destroy the Death Star...but Obi-Wan was also helping Luke through the Force.

As I continued to watch the OT through ESB and ROTJ, I started to notice something...Vader was most in-tune with sensing what he thought to be Luke's presence when he was with Leia. Think about it...both twins were on Hoth when Vader was in pursuit; both twins were together when escaping from Bespin; and both twins were together aboard the Imperial shuttle on the way to Endor. During the final battle between father and son aboard the second Death Star, Vader appeared to have a little trouble finding a hiding Luke...although Vader was using the Force at the time. If Vader was truly able to sense Luke's presence through the Force...why could he not have done it at that time? Only when Vader leaned of Luke's *twin sister* and taunted him with the idea of turning her to the Dark Side did Luke reveal his hide-out, lashing out at Vader with all his might.

Although I know that it was Luke's bravery that helped Anakin come forth once again and destroy the evil that was Palpatine, I cannot help thinking that it was the knowledge of having two children that helped Anakin break free. When Anakin, with his dying breath, said to Luke *tell your sister you were right...,* was he thinking about the love he shared so many years ago with Padme'? It would be nice to think so

I hope I made some sense today...I have been out of practice in writing. What do you all think...was the power of the twins together greater than that of them apart? And was it this power that helped Anakin realize that not all was lost when he turned so many years earlier? I just full of poodoo

Your thoughts and comments are welcome

Was *One* Really Breaking Into Two?

Originally posted on December 14, 2006

"Obi-Wan was've changed." 
"You're going down a path I can't follow."

Both of these lines were said by Padmé to Anakin on Mustafar. We all know what happened shortly after this conversation...and it still remains one of the saddest moments in the saga for me. I have been thinking about this "break" in our beloved couple for a few weeks now. Not so long ago, I found a video to the song One by Faith Hill detailing the events of Anakin and Padmé's love, and it got me to thinking...was *one* really breaking into *two*?

As my good friend Angel would agree, Anakin and Padmé became *one* when they sealed their love in marriage at the end of AOTC. A war was looming over their heads and their duties to the Republic would be tested; however, they still vowed to love each other, forever, through both good and bad. Over the following three years, they were frequently separated for varying periods of time, primarily a result of Anakin's duty to the Jedi Order. They spent as much time together as they could, given the circumstances...but was that enough to sustain them as a couple, as individuals?

When they were reunited in ROTS, everything appeared to be going well between them...Anakin was home, Padmé was expecting their child(ren), and it appeared that the war was almost over. However, we soon discovered that the happiness surrounding that reunion would not Anakin began having visions of Padmé's dying in childbirth. He was desperate to save her...and would do anything to keep her alive...even sell his soul to the Dark Side.

Padmé tried to help Anakin with his fears (as I discussed in a recent entry)...but he did not want her help. She wanted nothing more than to reach out to him, to reconnect the way they had *so long ago when there was nothing but our love.* Sadly, nothing she said or did changed things, and Anakin sought help elsewhere. Ironically, the person he turned to, his mentor and friend Palpatine, turned out to be the one person he sound have turned and run away from...and the only person to offer him the promise of cheating death, of saving Padmé. Anakin's pledge to Palpatine and the Dark Side essentially changed him so much that even those closest to him no longer recognized him. The moment Anakin turned on Padmé was the final "dagger" through the heart, so to was what finally "broke" our *one* into *two*.

"I feel lost." Anakin, ROTS

The more I have thought about this song and the relationship between Anakin and Padmé through ROTS, the more I started thinking how this song also related to Anakin and Padmé as individuals. Not only had the Clone Wars changed them as a couple, it also changed them as individuals as it tested them both in different ways...Anakin, for his loyalty to the Jedi, and Padmé, for her loyalty to the Republic, to Democracy. As the War was coming to a close and Palpatine's power was being questioned, members of both the Jedi Order and the Senate were gathering to challenge this power. The Jedi asked Anakin to spy on Palps, while Padmé was meeting with other Senators to discuss plans for what would become the Rebel Alliance. Anakin felt betrayed by the Jedi for being asked to spy for them, while Padmé felt like she was betraying Anakin by discussing such actions with others and not him. They were both being torn between their duties to the Republic and to each other...their lives were splitting into many fragments, and there was nothing they could do about it. Padmé wanted to return to Naboo to try and "fix" things not only between her and Anakin, but also for each other's sanity.

I could go on with this for what would seem like I will stop now. I would like to hear your thoughts on this. Were Anakin and Padmé, as *one* really breaking into *two,* both as a couple and as individuals, near the close of the Clone Wars?

As always...your comments are welcome.

May The Force Be With You

Don't Shut Me Out...Let Me HELP You

Originally posted on November 30, 2006

What's bothering you? Padme' to Anakin, ROTS

Nothing. Anakin to Padme', ROTS

Don't do this. Don't shut me out...let me help you. Padme'

Hello everyone!! I realized the other day that it had been a while since I have written a new entry. I had been suffering from a major case of *blog block* and could not put my thoughts into words.  However, after a weekend with some good friends (AS1, MO2YP, and VA2), I have been able to come up with something  So, without further ado...

As we all should know, this dialogue occurred between Anakin and Padme' after Obi-Wan had informed Anakin that his next assignment was to spy on Palpatine. He did not tell Padme' what had happened, but he did verbalize his growing mistrust of the Jedi Order...*sometimes I wonder what's happening to the Jedi Order. I think this war is destroying the principles of the Republic.* When Padme' suggested that *we may be on the wrong side,* and went on to clarify *what if the Democracy we thought we were serving no longer exists...and the Republic has become the very evil we've been fighting to destroy,* Anakin accused her of sounding like a Separatist. He lashed out, and she did not understand this. She wanted to help him, but did not know how to do so. She reached out by pleading with him to not shut her out, to let her in, to allow her to help him. He held her in his arms, but did not let her in. He always wanted to be the one to help others, but when it came to others helping him, he did not want it. So this begs me to ask...what was it about being helped that Anakin despised? 

Let us back up a bit to the nightmare scene. Anakin told Padme' about what he saw, her dying in childbirth, and that he did not know exactly what that meant. Padme' said to him *do you think Obi-Wan might be able to help us,* to which he promptly replied *we don't need his help.* 

At first, this seemed to me that Anakin did not want Obi-Wan's help because he (Ani) did not want him (Obi) to know about his secret. However, the more I looked at it, the more I thought that Anakin wanted to do things prove that he was a man who could provide for his family without any outside help. After all, he had become known as the *Hero With No Fear.* What would that say to the galaxy if he sought help for something he could do himself? He did not want to appear weak or needy...he wanted to figure things out for himself. He did not want to fail Padme' like he felt he did with his mother...with his gravesite promise to her to not fail again. He wanted to search for the answers himself...with some input from those he trusted, namely Yoda and Palpatine, but never Obi-Wan. 

Anakin sought Yoda's advise about these premonitions, but never came out and said exactly what it was that was bothering him. Anakin wanted answers and a solution to his nightmares. However, Yoda told him to *let go of everything you fear to lose,* which was the Jedi way of dealing with attachments. During this time, Palpatine began to sense what was bothering Anakin, and tried to lure him to the Dark Side with tales of cheating death. Anakin never really told Palps what was troubling him, but he (Palps) knew without asking...and used Padme's *certain death* as a way to "seal the deal." 

The one person outside of the Jedi and Padme' that Anakin trusted most was offering him a way to save his prevent her death. To do this, he must turn on those closest to him and give in to his anger, frustration, and even his hatred. Initially, he evidenced by the Opera scene and when Palpatine reveals himself as the Sith Lord the Jedi had been hunting. He was starting to doubt those around him and was being torn in many different directions...hence the statement, *I feel lost*. He wanted to stay in the Light, but knew that doing so would mean losing his love, Padme'. However, turning to the Dark, ironically, also meant not only losing his friends and mentors, but also his love, Padme'. Had he sought Obi-Wan's help, maybe things would have been different...maybe Padme' would have lived and the Jedi would have realized that change was needed. Sadly, this did not happen.  

What are your thoughts on why Anakin never wanted to seek help? As always, comments are welcome  

May The Force Be With You All...Always 

His Compassion for You Will Be His Undoing

Originally posted on October 26, 2006

His compassion for you will be his undoing. Palpatine to Vader, ROTJ

I have been thinking about this line for a while, and a recent entry by FAN4YRS inspired me to organize and complete my thoughts. Now, Emperor Palpatine, who we all know as the "Master Sith Lord," did not believe in compassion or, for that matter, in unconditional love. During the PT era, we saw him gaining power and influence over the galaxy. Sure, he had passion for what he was doing, but did he really ever have compassion? Did he truly understand what that meant? My guess is no.

Enter Anakin first, a young boy with love for his mother and then a man with love for Padme'. His statement to Padme' on the transport to Naboo was this: *Attachments...forbidden. Possessions...forbidden. Compassion, which I would refer to as unconditional love, is essential to a Jedi's life. So you might say we are encouraged to love.* Anakin understood the importance of compassion and love, but that was contradictory to the Jedi beliefs of no attachments, no love. He was expected to "bury" these feelings, to control them, to channel them to the Force. However, he could not do that...being taken by the Jedi at an older age, having known compassion and unconditional love from his mother. He did not get those feelings from the Jedi...he got them from Padme'. When visions of her dying in childbirth began haunting him, he could not sit idly by and watch them transpire. He did what he thought was right...turining to Palpatine for help. He let his compassion and love for Padme' to cloud his vision of what was right and what was wrong...and the power he gained from giving in to his fears, his hatred, only clouded this even more.

Fast forward to ANH, where we meet Luke, Anakin's son. He was taken in by his aunt and uncle, Anakin's step-brother and his wife, on Tatooine following the rise of the Empire. They did not have to do this, but they did...and I am sure that they showed him the compassion and unconditional love parents give to their children. They wanted nothing more than to ensure his safety and his protect him from the truth of his father's true identity. Once the Emprie hit too close to home for Luke, he turned to Ben...Anakin's former mentor...for guidance.

Throughout the OT, the influence of compassion and unconditional love on Luke are apparent...he puts his heart out there, risking rejection, in the hopes of acceptance. He finds that acceptance, that compassion, in Han, Chewie, Leia, and, eventually, Lando. He forms bonds with these individuals that cannot be broken, and they are there for him in times of need. When the truth of his father's identity becomes known, Luke slowly begins to accept it. Padme's dying words of *there is still good in him* begin to surface, and Luke starts to believe in Anakin. Luke begins to love Anakin...unconditionally.   He sets out to *save* Anakin from the turn him back to the Light...despite others' hesitation to believe that the good is there.

In the end, Luke was able to save Anakin...not through fighting Palpatine or totally giving in to his hatred...but through love, the unconditional love he had developed for his father, Anakin  . To quote FAN4YRS: *His father, Anakin Skywalker locked inside the Darth Vader carcass, could stand no more, and destroyed the Emperor, the embodient of hate, predjuice, and evil, to save his son, who, towards Anakin, was nothing but love.* I could not agree more with this statement. It is the essence of what occurred on that second Death Star...and the reason Anakin resurfaced. So what was the "lesson" to be learned by Palpatine? Do not underestimate the power of compassion...or what should be known as unconditional love.

As always comments are welcome

May The Force Be With You All

I Would Be More Concerned About Her Doing Something...Than Him

Originally posted on October 20, 2006

I sure hope he doesn't try anything foolish. Obi-Wan to Captain Typho, AOTC
I would be more concerned about her doing something...than him. Typho to Obi-Wan 

I got to thinking about this last week while watching AOTC. These words, as we all should know, were spoken between Obi-Wan and Captain Typho just prior to the departure of Anakin and Padme' for Naboo. Obi-Wan, having been Anakin's teacher for the past ten years, knew what his apprentice was capable of doing when left to his own devices. He was concerned for Anakin, since protecting Padme' was his first independent assignment. He knew what had been troubling Anakin...the visions of his mother's suffering, his unspoken love and desire for Padme'...and was rightfully worried about the mission. But...what does Captain Typho know about Padme' that Obi-Wan does not?

Typho had essentially been a part of Padme's "Royal Guard" since her reign as Queen of Naboo. He knew what she was capable of doing in the name of any cause in which she believed. She surprised Palpatine and the Trade Federation during the blockade in TPM...nobody expected her to successfully "pull off" both the diversion battle and the battle in the capitol. She remained in an active role in the galaxy following her term as Queen by agreeing to serve as the Senator from Naboo. She fought for what she believed in, and that was Democracy. She became a trusted voice within the Galactic Senate, and she would have done anything to maintain relative peace in the Republic.

So was this what Typho was referring to with his statement to Obi-Wan...Padme's known unpredictability and her determination? Or was there something else he knew about our beloved heroine? Did he know of her desire for a family of her own? Did he know about the feelings she was developing for Anakin?

We all know that the more time Padme' spent with Anakin, the deeper her feelings for him became (the AOTC novelization goes into more detail than the movie about this). She also wanted to ensure his "mission" to protect her was not compromised in any way. When Anakin tells her of his nightmares about his mother and of his need to save her, Padme' insisted that she accompany him. When news of Obi-Wan's capture on Geonosis reached them on Tatooine, she insisted they go to rescue him, despite Anakin's reservations. When they became captured and sentenced to death as well, she declared her love for him. Now, Anakin had a *purpose* for living...the one he had thought about, dreamed about for ten years, had given in to her feelings and said that she loved him. The determination to survive the execution after this declaraion was ever so apparent during this scene. She, in turn, was as equally determined to survive...and they all made it through in the end. When all was said and done, Anakin and Padme' sealed their love, their fate, their vows of marriage, with a kiss.

Could this have been what Captain Tyhpo was suggesting with that one simple statement to Obi-Wan that day? Could there have been more to our beloved heroine than we were led to believe? As a woman, I know what we can truly wish to happen, no matter what may be going on in our own lives that may prevent those wishes from coming true. Could Padme' have wished many of these same things, and the one trusted to protect her in all professional arenas have sensed this?

As always...comments are welcome!!

May the Force Be With You All

A Happy Moment Amongst Turbulent Times

Originally posted on October 3, 2006

What's wrong. You're trembling. Anakin to Padme', ROTS
Something wonderful has happened. Ani, I'm pregnant.  Padme' to Anakin, ROTS
That's...that's wonderful. Anakin
What are we going to do? Padme'
We're not going to do anything right now. This is a happy momemt. The happiest moment of my life. Anakin

I have been thinking about this entry now for quite a while, but have been unable to put my thoughts into something that would make sense. However, as I was at a baby shower this weekend, my mind started to work, and that got me to thinking more about this. As we know, the expectation of a baby is a happy moment for most parents. The time from confirmation of the preganacy to the arrival of the baby is one filled with many emotions...shock, happiness, excitement, anxiety, anticipation, etc. Dreams of what the baby will look like, what the baby will do, how the baby will grow all start to develop. By the time the baby arrives in the world, most parents have formed a bond with the child and have a sense of their expectations for the child. Most of the time, the baby arrives without any complications...but that is not always the case. I have worked with premature infants, infants born with such problems as heart defects that may or may not have been detected before birth, children who have developmental problems stemming from an incident during birth, and children who sustained injuries at the hands of their parents or other caregivers. For those whose children are not "perfect," the excitement of childbirth suddenly becomes a time of grief...they are grieving for the "loss" of their "perfect child," for the loss of all their dreams and aspirations. The timing of a pregnancy also has an impact on the acceptance by a parent. For some, the timing is "right"...both parents are at a place in their lives where they are ready for children, where they can support a family. For others, the timing is "wrong"...they are not ready for children, they do not want chidren, or they simply cannot provide for a family.

Now what does all of this have to do with Star Wars, and Anakin and Padme' specifically? Well...Padme' had always wanted a family of her own. She adored her two nieces, and could not wait for the day she had children of her own. However, she was always putting her work and her people above herself...she could not see how life in politics and a family would work together. I am not sure how much Anakin wanted to have a family...I have not seen too much describing this. However, it has been brought to my attention in the past that, in one of the EU novels, Anakin had discovered that a Jedi Master had a wife and family of his own, and could not wait to share this information with Padme'. I wonder...did Anakin's "want" for a family start with this discovery  . From what I understand, this happened around the time Luke and Leia were conceived. would beg to suggest that, at least subconsciously, Anakin also wanted a family.

As we all know, the Clone Wars were in "full force" (no pun intended  ) at this time, and Anakin and Padme' had little time to be together, to discuss their desires for a family. Times were trying for both...and the expectation of a "new baby" added to this. Padme' was worried about what the news of this would do to both of their careers...would she still be able to serve in the Senate, would Anakin still be able to remain a Jedi, and what would the citizens of the galaxy think? How would Anakin react to the news of the pregnancy...would he be happy, upset, indifferent? Thankfully, Anakin, after overcoming the initial shock, reacted with happiness...even saying that *this is a happy moment...the happiest moment of my life.*

But why was this particular moment the happiest? Was marrying the love of his life at least one of the happiest moments, was escaping the "clutches" of Watto one of them? I just wonder how miserable Anakin had been since leaving Tatooine at 9 years of age...could nothing but the thought of having a family of his own break this cycle of unhappiness? If that is what it takes, then I am happy for him. At least for a brief time, all was well with the *galaxy*, and Anakin was happy once more  .

After seeing things this way, I now think that his nightmares about Padme' dying in childbirth were an extension of his anxiety over this change in his life. He always awoke before the baby's "destiny" was he appeared to be more concerned over what would happen to Padme' than the child. However, he essentially did not have the time to "accept" the child that Padme' had, so his concerns about her were warranted. Saving Padme' would allow him to keep the love of his life and would allow him to have the family he would grow to love. Unfortunately, he could not see past his failure to save his mother, so he sought help from the one he trusted, the one who offered the promise to prevent death.

As always...comments are welcome

May the Force Be With You All

I Can Feel Your Anger...Anger and the Skywalker Men

Originally posted on September 15, 2006

I can feel your anger. It gives you focus...makes you stronger. Palpatine to Anakin, ROTS

I can feel your anger. I am defenseless. Take your weapon. Strike me down with all of your hatred, and your journey towards the Dark Side will be complete. Palpatine, to Luke, ROTJ

I noticed something while watching ROTJ and ROTS a few nights back that I had never noticed before...Palpatine used the line, *I can feel your anger...* with both Anakin and Luke when tempting them with the power of the Dark Side. We all know that anger, fear, and aggression are the traits of the Dark Side...but we also know that these are normal human emotions. What is it about these emotions that make them so wrong, so Dark? Palpatine "feeds" off of these emotions...this is where he gains his strength, his power. But why do the Jedi see the experience of these emotions as so wrong?

We all know that Anakin was full of fear, anger, and aggression...primarily stemming from his days as a slave and his inability to prevent his mother's death ten yeas after leaving her. I am sure he was angry with the Jedi for not allowing him to experience these feelings as he once was able to...and equally angry for them not helping him the way he needed to be helped. If the Jedi had been able to help Anakin work through these feelings rather than telling him they were "forbidden," things may have turned out differently. I am sure other Jedi experienced these feelings, these emotions, but were able to control, to suppress, them. When Anakin came along, he had such emotional baggage, that not helping him to work through these feelings and not helping him to control them, IMO, was detrimental to him and to the Order. Only when Palpatine promised the power to prevent death did Anakin realize that there was more than what the Jedi had to offer. Palpatine gave Anakin permission to act upon his anger, his fear, and his aggressive feelings. With this came power even Anakin did not know how to control...and he succumbed to his Dark feelings to become Darth Vader.

Now, Luke had every right to be full of anger...he was raised by his Aunt and Uncle on Tatooine, knew little of his parents, and was being prevented from enlisting in the Academy. Yoda even said *there is much anger in him* when speaking with Obi-Wan's spirit. What Luke had most of, IMO, was impatience...much like his father's impatience. Luke also had much emotional baggage when he began his Jedi training...but he was helped along in controlling these feelings by both Yoda and Obi-Wan that he was able to not let these emotions to get the better of him. He learned *control* of these feelings, and was able to face his worst fears with the knowledge that controlling one's fear, one's anger would help with focusing on the task at hand. Luke almost gave in to these feelings when Palpatine was tempting him...but, after realizing what had happened to his father, he regained control over his anger and hate, gave himself over to the will of the Force, and saved his father in the process.

Now, the difference between Anakin and Luke here is that of *control*. They both possessed anger, the both possessed fear, but Anakin was unable to control these where Luke was able to learn control. As I said above, had the Jedi helped Anakin work through his anger, his fear, his hate and helped him to learn how to control these feelings, things may have turned out differently. Luke gained mastery over these feelings and learned to control them...although in the "heat of the moment" aboard the second Death Star, he almost gave into temptation. Anger is a human emotion, one we all experience at one time or another. Just imagine if we let our anger control our feelings, our lives...we would live in a totally different world, one where anger and fear would rule. It is just ironic to me that Palpatine could pinpoint and feel this emotion in both Anakin and Luke, father and son, but have two completely different gave in to the temptation while the other did not.

As always comments are welcome.
May the Force Be With You All

Your Presence Is Soothing

Originally posted on September 7, 2006

Don't go. Anakin to Padme', AOTC

I don't want to disturb you. Padme' to Anakin, AOTC

Your presence is soothing. Anakin

Ok...if you do not know when these lines were said, then I am disappointed in you  No, seriously...these were said the morning after Anakin had his nightmare about his mother, when Padme' checks on Anakin on the balcony of the Lake Retreat house. But...when Anakin said these words to Padme', did he just mean *soothing* at that moment or *soothing* every time she was near? I like to believe that he meant every time she was near him. However, there is a time when this soothing effect does not work...but I will discuss that in a moment.

Anakin always appears to be so much more calm when Padme' is around that it seems that she produces, for lack of a better word, a sedative effect on him. Whatever was troubling him moments before has less of an impact the moment she appears to him. Although he cannot always forget his troubles or the troubling visions (i.e. his nightmares about his mother and, later, Padme'), he gains a sense of comfort from her selflessness. He does not want to let this feeling go, so he confesses his love for her and later marries her. However, things are not always what they may seem

Fast forward approximately three the end of the Clone Wars. Anakin comes home, excited to see his wife, his angel, once more. This time, however, she has "news" for him...she is pregnant with his child(ren) and worried about what this means. However, he soon expresses his joy at this wonderful event, and somewhat places her nerves at ease. However, because of his visions of her dying in childbirth, Anakin looks for the power to prevent these visions from coming true. This time, Padme' is not always *soothing,* as evident by Anakin's "shortness" with her during some of their discussions. He finds the power he needs to save her...but that means turning his back on the Jedi and joining the Sith. When it looks like all hope is lost, he pledges himself to Palps/Sidious' teachings...but under the condition of saving Padme's life because *I can't live without her.* By the time Padme' confronts Anakin on Mustafar, he was too far down the Dark path to be saved, even by his angel, his one source of comfort. When Vader/Anakin realizes that Padme' is gone, he eventually completely gives in to his anger and buries the feelings he once had.

Now, jump ahead twenty or so years when Anakin's son, Luke enters his life...a son he had thought died years before along with his wife. Now, the tables are turning, and the Darkness is beginnning to break in to Light. Because Luke was selfless like Padme' and carried with him her dying words of *there is good in him*, his presence allowed the "man" who was Vader to begin losing the battle with the "man" who was Anakin. Padme's presence in Luke more than likely brought back those comforting, soothing feelings Anakin once felt around his one *True Love." I also have a feeling that Leia exuded an aura of comfort around Vader...maybe that is why he could not allow her to be executed  Anyway...the love Anakin and Padme' shared all those years before came flooding back to Anakin through the presence and love of his children. So, essentially in the end, Padme's *soothing* presence reappeared to bring Anakin back to the Light, allowing him to join her once more

As always...comments are welcome. May the Force Be With You All...Always

Luke--Anakin's Final "Test?"

Originally posted on August 22, 2006

You must confront Vader again. Obi-Wan to Luke, ROTJ

Sometime within the past couple of weeks a comment was made in someone's blog (sorry...I cannot remember who made the comment or who wrote the blog) regarding Luke being Anakin's final test to becoming a Jedi Master. The more I thought about it, the more it began making sense.

I always thought of this as Luke's final test in becoming a Jedi Master...if he confronts Vader and defeats the Sith, he is worthy of being a Jedi Master. However, could Luke have been sent by both Yoda and Obi-Wan to test Anakin and bring him back from the Dark Side to join them among the Jedi Masters of old? Could the memory of Padme's dying words to Obi-Wan have resurfaced with Luke's expression of faith in his father's goodness? Could the words *you must confront Vader again* been Obi-Wan's way of saying to Luke "if you confront, rather than kill, Vader, your father may return to the Light and fulfill his destiny as the Chosen One and finally be able to become the Master he always wanted to be?"   These are questions that have been going through my mind since I read that comment in that blog.

As I have said before, I believe that Anakin never truly died when Vader took over...the "Anakin persona" became buried deep within the evil that was Vader until Luke appeared in his life, reminding him of his past life as Anakin and all that meant. I have written about how Luke carried Padme's dying words with him until the time was right for them to "resurface" for Luke to redeem Anakin. I often wonder if Obi-Wan ever thought of those words, *there is good in him...*, during his time watching over Luke on Tatooine. I am sure he had to think about that every once in a while. By the time we meet "old Ben" in ANH, much time had passed since that fateful duel on Mustafar, and he appeared to have no hope for the good in his old Padawan. His sadness for the "days of old" was apparent as he told Luke about his father...and then again as he told Luke that Vader betrayed and murdered his father. It appeared that Obi-Wan wanted Luke to be trained as a Jedi, to *learn the ways of the Force*, in order to "revive" the Jedi Order, to show the Sith that the Jedi were not dead, and to have Luke destroy the Sith, something his father could not do. However, could Obi-Wan's luring of Luke to the Jedi ways have been his way of showing that he had hope that there was still good in Anakin, and that Luke's eventual confronting him would bring him back? It makes me wonder if he had a "double-edged" purpose for training Luke...restoring the Jedi Order and testing Anakin's ability to overcome his anger and rejoin the Jedi as a Master.

But be patient, Anakin. It will not take long before the Council makes you a Jedi Master. Obi-Wan to Anakin, ROTS

But patience was something Anakin did not have at the time of his downfall.   Had Anakin focused on his task of spying on the Chancellor rather than finding a way to save Padme', he may have been made a Master long before Luke was needed. Anakin was losing confidence in the Jedi Order by the end of the Clone Wars, and his inpatience grew as the days passed before his turn...he did not have time to wait until the Council decided his fate to learn how to save Padme' from his visions. He heard the promises of the power to save others from Palpatine, and, in haste, decided to join him and learn his knowledge of that power. That decision cost him everything...his wife, his friends, his family, his self. The one thing he wanted most from the Jedi, to be a Master, would never be realized...until Luke confronted him on Endor and the second Death Star. During that confrontation, he kept referring to how Obi-Wan had taught Luke well but that there was no match for the power of the Dark Side. However, Luke's persistence in staying in the Light, of vowing to save Anakin, finally broke the "veil of darkness" surrounding Anakin and made him the master of his destiny. In fulfilling his role as the Chosen One to destroy the Sith, he passed his final "test" and became a Jedi Master...being able to join Yoda and Obi-Wan as a Force ghost.

What do you all think...was Luke sent to test Anakin, to see if he was truly redeemable and worthy of becoming a Master, even after twenty-plus years? Or am I going too far out on a limb here with this thought?

As always, comments are welcome. May the Force Be With You!!