In the past month, Marvel Studios caught the theatres by storm with Dr Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. Truly a wild ride, there’s much to unpack from the story, but let’s hone in on the journey of America Chavez.
And yes, SPOILERS AHEAD!
One of the few young adult characters in the MCU, America quite literally crashes into the movie running from monsters. For most of the movie afterwards, this becomes a regular occurrence – America is mostly scared and casts doubt upon herself.
Self-doubt comes from many different sources, but it is no foreign feeling for most of us. Just like America, things are constantly changing, people are unpredictable, and you don’t even know what you might do sometimes. This instability creates a lack of trust, which makes us cautious about everything and everyone – including ourselves.
Image credit: Polygon
About midway through the story, we get an insight into a past memory of America’s. A random trigger of her powers resulted in her parents being sent into an alternate universe, leaving her scared, alone, and confused.
While we may not have the ability to traverse multiverses, it takes a while to figure out our innate qualities and how to utilise them. You might be great at speaking, but accidentally offended someone; you may be sensitive to the feelings of others, but ended up choosing the wrong time to point it out. We don’t choose to have these qualities, and unfortunate past experiences may have caused you to suppress them, never finding out how to hone them.
Image credit: GamesRadar
Warning: SPOILER SPOILERS
Finally, in the last fight scene, Dr Strange gives America a quick pep talk. Based on nothing but faith, he encourages America to use her powers to finish the fight – resulting in a complete, star-spangled victory for her (and the multiverse).
Is it really that simple? Of course it isn’t always just like that – but all it takes is a tiny dose of trust to rekindle your courage to find yourself again. It could come from adult figures, peers, or small victories. These give you a running start, but trusting yourself is the key to taking that leap of faith, and finding out what’s on the other side.
Image credit: CBR
Maybe along the way, we forgot how trust feels like, and we stopped looking for it. Start noticing these moments and own them, and perhaps you’ll open that portal to a new universe, a new you.