Deconstruction represents the process by which we start to pull at the threads of harmful patterns and beliefs that we have inherited, sometimes over generations. For many, deconstruction includes the role and value of children and proper discipline. In faith communities, it often involves questioning the identity and demeanor of the God we have received. Deconstruction is a lengthy, often messy process, and even when one feels “done” with deconstruction there may be vestiges of one’s previous way of thinking that take them by surprise.
Parenting is often a trigger for those trailing threads to appear, even if it was the catalyst for deconstruction. You think you’re done, and all of a sudden you have a daughter who’s growing up and realize that some icky purity culture/modesty nonsense was lurking in a dark corner. You work through it again, and despite your best efforts you sometimes mess up.
All of this to say…we finally went to see Frozen II. The sequel gave shape and depth to Queen Iduna and King Agnarr, Elsa and Anna’s parents. As we watched, I realized that Agnarr’s character arc between the two movies offers an excellent case study in parenting during deconstruction. (Spoilers, obviously.)