Happy Endings

Do you believe in happy endings?  No, I am not talking about the oriental massage shops you see advertised in sports section of your local paper.  I am talking about our cultural fascination with happy endings.  In movies, it’s called Hollywood endings.  In literature, it’s called …… um …. well, just happy endings.

But you get my point.   Why are we so enthralled with idea of everything working out?  Maybe it’s because we need those storybook endings to make us feel good about life and ourselves.  How said would it have been if George Bailey were stuck in that world of his, the one where he did not exist?  The movie would not have the same meaning or message.  It would be sad and dark, and it would not be the holiday classic it is today.

I have been thinking a lot about happy endings.  I feel as if I am in the middle of my story, waiting anxiously to see what happens next.  As much as I want to believe in happy endings, I get the feeling this is no Hollywood feel-good situation.  Maybe this is one of those stories that just ends abruptly, leaving everyone bewildered and just a little jaded.  Maybe this is like American Beauty, where the story is full of life changing events and dysfunctional intrigue, only to have a ‘splattered’ ending.   Maybe this is the middle part of the story, where the outcome looks bleak and there is no hope for our hero (that would be me, BTW!).  Either way, I just want to fast forward to see what finally happens.

And if anything sucks about life, it’s that there is no fast forward, no rewind, not even a pause.  We may think we can pause the action, but we can’t.  Life is simply a matter of pressing play and sitting back.  I guess the popcorn is optional.  And in the grand scheme of things, me being stuck in the middle of my story, hanging precariously over a ravine from a tree limb as not one but two scorpions race down my arm (I know ….. I tend to be dramatic) is not the worst thing in the world.  It’s my dilemma and my problem to resolve, and I have to have faith that the ending, whether it be the happy ending I want or the cliffhanger, to-be-continued scenario I dread, is what it is for a reason.

I sat here about a month ago and wrote about friendship and how this friendship will get me through the tough times.  In a way, friendship serves as a fast forward in life.  A way to distract your attention from the drama playing out before our eyes.  But you can only draw from the well so many times.  Sometimes you need to just sit alone and bear through the pain, despair and anguish.  Support gets you to the river, but strength gets you across it.  And although I feel like my raft is sinking and the crocodiles are chomping beneath me, I believe in my happy ending and I believe I will make it across.  I have to, because I know I don’t have the courage or energy to live through a sequel!

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