"You only live once"
It is a very popular quote that I'm sure everyone heard of already. Usually young people use this as an excuse to maximize or do whatever they wanted to do. Whether it is a good thing for them nor a bad thing, people usually don't care because they thought that they only live once, so why not do everything they want right? Not to disagree with the world's definition of "YOLO" but I believe that this quote has a deeply meaning behind. You only have one life, why waste it by doing whatever you want if you can maximize your life and still be happy at the end of it right? Please, don't get me wrong, this is my own perspective and I do not intentionally want to offend you for your own perspective of "YOLO". It's just for me, you can live your life to the fullest without having guilt or regrets from what you did in your life. And besides, it's your life and you will take full responsibility for it.
Why am i talking about this? Because this time I will share to you 10 Lessons the Anime Series "ORANGE" taught me. I know you might get bored or tired of all my recent - Anime related posts but I'm pretty sure you will get something from this blog, please bare with me even for a little while. Hehe
So what is the series ORANGE all about?
In the Spring she was 16, Takamiya Naho receives a strange, but detailed letter from herself, ten years in the future. At first, she thinks the letter is a prank, but then the things written in the letter actually happen, including the new transfer student that sits next to her in class, Naruse Kakeru. The letter reads just like her diary entries, down to the same characters. It is not till two weeks later, when Kakeru shows back up at school, that Naho finishes the letter. In the letter, her 26-year-old self tells her 16-year-old self that her biggest regret is that Kakeru is no longer with them in the future, and asks her to watch him closely.
Below are the characters:
- Kakeru Naruse 成瀬 翔 - Kakeru is the main male protagonist of Orange. The series centers around him, his fate, and the efforts of his friends to fulfill the wishes of a letter from the future. He enjoys video games. Though he puts up a happy front, he is depressed about his mother's death and blames himself. He claims to think about killing himself everyday. He is also a skilled runner and is the fastest runner in his class.
- Naho Takamiya 高宮 菜穂 - Naho Takamiya is the in Orange. When she receives a mysterious letter from the future involving Kakeru Naruse, she and her friends try their hardest to fulfill the demands of the letter. Naho is shown to be an above average girl. She has shoulder length, walnut hair and large, green eyes. Naho is very shy and loving.
- Hiroto Suwa 須和 弘人- Suwa is one of the main characters in the story and classmate of Naho's. He also gets a letter from his future-self to help save Kakeru. With the help of Naho and his friends, they all want to save Kakeru before his fate. Suwa is shown to be tall and muscular. Suwa has an extroverted, happy, easy-going, personality. He is also a kind person who acts selflessly for others, for instance he helps with the attempts to get Naho and Kakeru together, despite having romantic feelings for Naho.
- Saku Hagita 萩田 朔 - Saku Hagita is one of the characters in the story and classmate of Naho's. He also gets a letter from his future self to help save Kakeru. With the help of Naho and his friends, they all want to save Naruse before his fate. He has short brownish grey hair and wears glasses, he is less muscular than Suwa and is average height. He switches to contacts in the future.
- Azusa Murasaka 村坂 - Azusa Murasaka is one of Naho's best friend who supports her throughout the series. She is often seen arguing with Hagita, but has a cheerful personality. Azusa is shown to be cheerful, playful, and kind to her friends. She accepted many of the nicknames she received in middle school, proving her to be open-minded to most things. Though, she may be mischievous at times.
- Takako Chino 茅野 貴子 - Takako Chino is one of the characters in the story and a classmate, and best friend, of Naho's. She also gets a letter from her future self to help save Kakeru. With the help of Naho and her friends they all helped to save Naruse before his fate. She is also very protective of Naho and defends her. Takako is a tall slender girl with dark hair and blueish grey eyes.
Here's a trailer to excite you more:Source: ToHo Animation via youtube.com
Series like this always have a special place in my heart, an Anime genre of Friendship, Suicide and drama. I believe making a Manga or Animated series of this kind is very challenging, knowing that it is a sensitive topic. But I also adore those brave Author to push through this kind of Genre, kudos to all of you.
So here we go,
"Everything happens for a reason. The odds might not be in your favor but for sure the Almighty from above knows what He is doing. "
There is a scene wherein Naho chase Kakeru and tell him that she will always be there for him. Then Kakeru confessed, "I don't know what am I living for". Most of us asked ourselves the same question, people tend to abandoned their life because they don't know why are they here in this world. What are their purpose? And I believe that when the time comes that we discovered our own purpose in this world, it will fill the little empty space in our heart.
"Yeah, you made a mistake, but life is still beautiful. Choose to be happy. Always. Because you deserve it."
The very thing why the Adult characters wrote letter and send it to their 10 year old younger self, it is to lessen the burden they felt when Kakeru died. I know that none of us doesn't have regrets. Regrets are already part of our lives. We always have our "what ifs" in our mind and "I wish" in our hearts. But until when are we gonna make ourselves suffer from the terror of the past? Yes we made a mistake sometime in our lives but that doesn't invalidate you to be happy again. Regrets are the bondage of our past that if we will not break from it, it will continue to paralyze us. Accept your regrets, be happy because you definitely deserve it.
"Lend an ear to someone. Sometimes it's the only thing they need. Have the heart to understand also."
On their past life, Kakeru doesn't have the opportunity to tell his friends about what he feel. I assumed it is because he is scared that his friends will not believe him if he tell them that his mother died because of him. Listening, One of the important action that people usually neglect. Because we are so selfish, we always want he spotlight for ourselves and by that we always wanted to speak rather than to listen. But I realized that lending an ear to someone is like reaching your hands to someone who are in need of help. People with deep emotional problems just need someone who will listen to them. For them to cry out what's inside their hearts, and not to be judge because of what he feels. And of course as you listen, also have the heart to understand what is he/she is going through.
"You are not alone, never alone. You have someone, caring for you. That is for sure."
Kakeru always felt that he is alone. That there is no one for him though he has friends with him. But on the parallel world, his friends tend to do everything for him to feel a company. You might consider yourself a loner or introvert but for sure you are not alone. You always have someone with you, just open your eyes and allow other people to take part in your life. There will be always someone who cares for you. Someone who thinks how are you doing, did you eat already or did you have a great day. Don't box yourself with a lie that you are alone. Besides, God never left your side.
5. BE REAL
"It's okay to laugh. It's okay to cry too. Be transparent."
Kakeru once said to suwa and naho that whenever he is with them, he just wanted to laugh and not to be sad. A lot of us is like Kakeru. We don't wanna show our true emotion to people. We love to pretend that we are okay and we are happy with our life. But the truth is we are suffering inside. Behind those sweet smiles are the painful sorrow we carry everyday. But afraid not, be real! Show them what you really feel and tell them what you are going through. You might get judge by others, yes but it doesn't matter. What matter is you expressed yourself and be freed of what is holding you inside.
" Say what you really feel inside. SPEAK UP! Don't be afraid! "
Kakeru was always afraid to tell to anyone what he really feels even to his grandma. The only moment that they knew about his situation is when he left a suicide note the night he died. Confess! Speak up! Nothing will lose if you allow others to know what you are going through. Who knows that they might even help you to get through with that right? Fear will always be present, but do not allow it to overcome you and ended you to carry the burden for yourself.
"Tell your love ones you love them. ASAP! If you know you do love them, say it to them!"
One of the greatest regret of Suwa was he knew that both naho and kakeru likes each other. But Naho and Kakeru are not aware of their mutual feelings. So when Kakeru died suwa feel bad for not letting them know what they really feel for each other. But in the other parallel world suwa did his best to push both of them to confess and show what they really feel for each other. If you think you love someone, please don't hesitate to tell it to that person. Whether it is a romantic love, a family love or a friendship love say it! Because you will never know until when will that person live, don't wait for the moment wherein you regret saying or expressing your love for someone. Do it now!
8. BE STRONG
"Be strong! Know that you are worthy even though sometimes you don't feel it. Take courage, dear heart."
Kakeru just like any typical teenager nowadays went through depression and anxiety. Young but definitely lost. Sometimes we tend to forget our worth that we thought of ourselves as a worthless person. But the truth is, we are strong. Especially when our God is with us.
"I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength" -Philippians 4:13"
As the saying also goes:
"God gives the toughest battle to his toughest soldiers"
You are strong, more than you ever thought. You are worthy because you are made that way.
"Forgive yourself so that you could move forward. This might be the hardest thing ever but it's a process and a decision as well."
One of the reason why Kakeru decided to commit suicide is because he cannot forgive himself. That moment when he saw a draft text from his mother's cellphone written "Sorry for getting in your way" he suddenly felt he is the reason of his mom's death. All his life he thought that his mom doesn't care for him but he was definitely wrong. Forgive yourself, this might be the toughest thing to do but you must. Sometimes forgiving yourself for what you've done is much even harder than forgiving other people for what they've done to you. Guilt is overcoming you and you are simply begin to paralyze. But one thing for you to move forward is to forgive yourself. No one can determine until when but it is indeed a process to be learn. No matter how deep or huge the thing you damage, to yourself or to other people remember that everyone deserves forgiveness.
"Although life seems too painful, always choose to LIVE. COMMITING SUICIDE WILL NEVER BE THE SOLUTION."
At the parallel world, Kakeru realized that he doesn't want to die yet. That he want to see what the world offers tomorrow and the next day. That he wanted to smile and continue to laugh with Naho and with others. LIVE. Though life hits you hard, bounce back harder. You don't have to end your life because you have so many regrets. I remember what our Professor once told us
"Life is composed of 99% of pain and suffering"
which is kinda true but I believe that the remaining 1% is enough to give us light and a glimpse of hope to continue with our life.
There you have it, 10 Lessons I learned in the Anime Orange, i hope you get something from what I've share. Surely this create a space close to my heart. If you want some Anime resembles with Orange's story you might love Shigatsuwa Kimi No Uso (You're lie in April) and Anohana too.
Here's a glimpse of You're lie in April, it is one of my favorites too:Source: AniplexUS via youtube.com
Thank you for reading! Have a great day!