Shadowlands Movie Trailer:

Last night we watched the movie, Shadowlands. It is an award winning 1993 film based on the true story of the life of C.S. Lewis. The role of C.S. Lewis (Jack) is played by Anthony Hopkins alongside actress Debra Winger as Joy.

This was my second time watching the movie. The first time was a long time ago. The first time I watched it, I remember crying uncontrollably from a scene near the end. I didn’t expect to cry throughout most of the movie this time. Maybe I did last time and don’t remember. Anthony Hopkins reminds me so much of my father. This time I took in so much more.

It is a movie that brings you to a place of introspection that still lingers with me today. 

It is a movie about love and loss, about connection, and a child’s loss of a parent. And how love can awaken our spirit. How just one seemingly insignificant event can change your life forever. How just one person can change your life forever.

It is about how the experience of loss and suffering can cause all of your thoughts and philosophies, and all the significant quotes that you believe in, to suddenly mean nothing. And how in these moments of deep suffering and loss, we realize how little we really know or understand about life. It is a message about how the experiences of connection and love are our teachers. But how loss and suffering are the ultimate teachers.

This film will be especially emotional and touching to anyone who has lost a parent as a child. Who wished someone would have put their arms around you and not only let you cry, but cried with you. And for anyone who has ever loved and lost.

The title, Shadowlands, is from a story written by C.S. Lewis. In the movie he explains that we all seem to live in the shadowlands where the sun is always just around the corner, always somewhere else. This movie, however, brings you from the shadowlands of one man’s heart and deep into the human heart and the reality of vulnerability and what it means to love and be loved.

There are so many good quotes from the movie that I won’t share, so as not to spoil it for you if you choose to watch the movie, except for one: “The pain then is part of the joy now, that’s the deal.”

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Since the movie is hard to find, the following are some options for purchasing or viewing it if you are interested:

Buy DVD on Amazon:

Watch on Amazon:

Alternative source for DVD (this is where we purchased ours):


17 thoughts on “​“Shadowlands”

    1. The first time I watched it my heart was gripped more with the child’s loss of a parent. My soul resonated with it, especially since I never got to grieve the loss of my father and felt responsible in some way for his death. And Anthony Hopkins reminds me of my father.

      This time I took it in as a whole, all of it. I can understand your feelings. I just don’t know what life is about if it weren’t for love. And loving means being vulnerable and yes losing.

      Somehow it is making me think that the pain of losing is a part of the joy of love. We can’t have one without the other. Just like we can’t live without dying. Whether we are willing to face it or not.

      Unfortunately life should not be about loss in the form of abuse. I think recognizing the evil in abusers is important. But equally important is to look at ourselves and see what it has done to us and find compassion for ourselves in the same way we do for others. This is difficult, I know, and a long process.

      I wonder if we have a moral obligation to work on ourselves even if it takes until the day we die. After all, our abusers did what they did to us because they didn’t face themselves and their own pain and suffering. And that is on them. I just hope we can do better than just exist.

      Laurel, you have gifts and talents that need expression in the world. We need the best parts of you to not die or stay dead. Please, if you will, listen to Brené Brown’s talks on vulnerability. If you are interested, I will give you a link to a 6+ hour talk by her on vulnerability.

      I hope I have earned the right to say these things to you Laurel, that you know it is from a place of compassion for you. And that I do want the best for you!


      1. You have every right to say these things to me, and I appreciate that you want good things for me.
        I am seriously concerned (though I won’t say it out loud) that I am quietly going mad. I seem to care about nothing….least of all myself.
        BUT, I’m okay with it. I think it’s alright. I LOVE hiding in my house. I love not having to answer to anybody.
        I pay my bills and drink my Boost and work on my blog. I’m anonymous on my blog. Nobody sees my eyes. I can insert humor to cover the pain.
        I think that’s okay.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Laurel! This makes me so very sad for you. I have been in a place with these feelings. I didn’t know you could lose yourself this much. It is easier to get there than it is to get out. For all the progress I made, I still have not completely come out of this. I think as women when we lose our children, we lose purpose. If you combine this with heartache and abuse, it is all the ingredients you need. Because I have made progress, I am at least hopeful it is possible. This is something I did not know just a few months ago. Like you, I came to a place of acceptance. While it felt better than being aware of the internal struggle, it was probably more dangerous. Please just keep your heart open to let whatever light and love comes into your life to shine. And embrace it. Just sit with it and let it be. Wherever you are is more than okay… for now.

          (I am sorry it has taken me so long to respond. I received your comment just after my husband entered surgery.)Hugs!


        2. Part of the reason I question my madness is because…I would think, as a mother….it would really devastate me that my children are no longer in my life. It does seem a little surreal but it’s been so long that it is just normal for me. I was telling somebody just yesterday that I was like a dog, who had been chained to a tree…and beaten and starved. When I finally broke free, do you think I should look wistfully back at the tree…as my home? Do you think I should strain to catch one last glimpse of the master who had been so cruel…or should I just walk away and never look back? I knew when my second daughter emailed me…finally….that it was never going to work. I was unsettled by it. I resented it. This sudden “caring” on Mothers’ Day….out of guilt…or obligation. If we had tried to “talk” there would have been conditions and boundaries…that confined me to being “the mom I used to be.” There’s no sympathy or empathy for what the Loser puppet AND that WTC puppet-master did to me. I”M supposed to get over it and act like nothing happened. I”M supposed to invite that tramp into MY life and act like nothing happened. I”M supposed to overlook what Loser did to me….and because I refuse…..I’m “completely insane.”


        3. Laurel, I think you might be on to something here. You are chained to your children’s opinion of you… if they don’t have compassion for you… then there is none to be found… who else will… how can you even have compassion for yourself… if your children can do this to you, what is everyone else capable of doing to you? And who wants to find that out? These are all the things I have felt to my core that shattered my life. I don’t know if I am using all the right words, but I can tell you, I FEEL EVERYTHING YOU ARE SAYING!

          Nothing in life prepares you as a mother, for your children to turn against you, nothing! This is what pushed me over the edge with my daughter. And I have suffered immeasurably for it… lost myself completely for years.

          It wasn’t until a series of unrelated events lead me to discover and face that she is a psychopath, just like her father, that everything made sense. I was beating myself up over something I had no control over nor could I ever fix. And my daughter was relentless in wanting to hurt me. She couldn’t stand that her children loved me. And so I lost them too.

          I had a wake up call… there was no way to continue living in this kind of pain. We are not made to do that. We are to go through it, grieve it, heal from it. And begin to live again.

          And this Laurel, somehow with some love and kindness, you need to fight for your life. You need to matter again to you. Like you would for one of your children.

          I just said to someone yesterday that being with my ex-husband who is a psychopath was like when you grab a dog or cat by the scruff of the neck and you see everything in them surrender… there is no way out. Like me, you have the right insight. It is the emotions and feelings that need to now align.

          Everything that goes wrong, that others do to you, is not you Laurel. Lucy told me this yesterday: you have trusted the wrong people.

          I have had to become numb to my feelings to stop living in this pain. It is hard when they surface. I try to think of them as being happy living there lives without me so I don’t worry about them.

          Make no mistake Laurel, you have a right to live life, to find joy without your children. And that is nothing small to realize or do. You are a mother, you do have fight in you, now that fight needs to be for you. I am not saying today… I know it is a long hard road. But start with living with this awareness. Give yourself permission to live and let this be the start.

          I can tell you this Laurel, it is when we open up our heart in this way, things we couldn’t have imagined come.


        4. It’s hard to think of my children as psychotic or narcissist but I know they are. They craved his attention and affection so much that they are willing to forsake me for it. He won’t disappoint them…he’s retired now and he has to impress that tramp by acting like he gives a shit about his children and grandchildren. I hate that even though they have all called him “a piece of shit” they chose him…and that piece of trash.
          BUT….when I give up or give something up..it’s for good. It will get easier, I’m sure. The holidays might still be an issue but I made it through this year without falling apart. It’s funny….I have two sisters, and two brothers-in-law. I have four children and their significant others….yet…I’m all by myself. I was always there for them….hmmm.


        5. Laurel, I wasn’t suggesting that your children are psychopaths. They may be. But they are choosing to betray you probably under the influence of their father. When you can’t trust your children it changes everything for you.

          My ex-husband worked to remain in my family’s life, even though he made no effort to do so when we were together. Only one sister sees him for who he is. They don’t know what he did to me or my children, but he has manipulated them too.

          We Laurel, have lost everything. And that can’t happen to a person without it having an effect on you in ways we are not prepared to cope with. Every person who comes into our lives now and loves us and is willing to stay touches us in ways they will never know.

          We can’t wait for our children to love us, to love ourselves. This is beyond heart wrenching. We can only take one day at a time. And for now, just keep these things in the back of your mind and do what you need to do to get through each day. And give yourself permission to smile and laugh. These seem insignificant, but they are not. It was the beginning of something for me.

          I have a fear of being too available to others for this very reason you mention. But it is even sadder if we don’t care for ourseves enough to fight our way back.


    1. Yes it does! And your walk of sorrow and grief is unimaginable! Hugs to you!

      ( I am sorry it has taken me so long to respond. I received your comment just after my husband entered surgery.) xoxo

      Liked by 1 person

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