“I always designed Gravity Falls to be a finite series about one epic summer…It’s meant to be an exploration of the experience of summer, and in a larger sense a story about childhood itself. The fact that childhood ends is exactly what makes it so precious- and why you should cherish it while it lasts. “
-Alex Hirsch, on the ending of Gravity Falls
I loved this show. I fell into it almost to the day my husband was carjacked at gunpoint. I was having, easily, the darkest part of a dark, dark 2 years. Sitting under the dining room table, eating a dozen cupcakes and drinking bourbon from the bottle dark.
Nightmares for weeks dark.
But it was everything I remembered about summer and being 12 and thinking you might have the keys to solving mysteries just by reading books like “How to Hunt for Ghosts” and “How to Hunt for UFOs” and going through the paranormal section of the library and trying to sneak books you’re REALLY not old enough to be reading past your parents.
And the librarians who go to your church.
I watched the entire series, to that point, in a week. Conveniently, it was being shown as a marathon. Then I caught the newest episode. Only to find out that the series was ending.
On, what I promise, is the pitch perfect note.
It ended. The summer ended just as it must and it should.
And a week from today I start my new job.
I can’t help but feel the cyclical nature of life. 2 years…really…3 years ago started with the agonized phone call from my mother that my uncle had collapsed…that he needed to be resuscitated…that it was brain cancer. Then things were ok for a little while. Then my husband lost his job the first time…my Nana died…my uncle died…my cousin died…my cousin died…my grandfather died…another cousin died…down and down they go…
Each time I felt that this, this was it, this was the time things would get better. That it couldn’t possibly get worse.
And it did.
And I fell into a pit I didn’t want to crawl out of.
I wanted someone in the world to just look at me and say “Wow. You’re really messed up from this, aren’t you?”
But I pride myself on a “Can do! We’ll make it through this ! Put more stickers on it! Sparkles! Sunshine! I can do this! Let’s find joy in this moment!”
Until…I lost my job.
And even though it was Christmas.
I didn’t find joy in those moments any more.
I went to events out of habit.
Made presents and went outside because its what I knew I had to do.
But I knew the signs, even if others hadn’t seen.
I went for days without showering. I mean, I didn’t go out and do anything so why should I bother?
I didn’t want to eat.
I wanted to sleep, but every time I closed my eyes I was confronted with what I thought were my own failures in strength, resilience, and talent.
So I cleaned and unpacked boxes in the house we live in that, we were supposed to buy from my parents, but can’t even do that because I don’t have a job.
I was in a place that should be home, surrounded by chaos and hopelessness, with only the reminders of what I’d lost around me.
So I made things. I made scarves and hats and painted.
I read the trashiest of trashy romance novels, whatever I could stomach.
I found pictures of puppies.
I came up with a routine for my skin to eat away the time and be productive. (Might I add, my skin is great right now and I’ve gotten a lot of “Your make-up looks great today” when I am wearing none. So that was totally worth it.)
But watching the end of this show…at the same time this unemployment is ending…I feel like maybe, this is finally the end.
That I’ve gone through the deep, dark, tunnel and maybe…just maybe…
its finally over.
And I can move forward with whatever my life is supposed to be now.
And think that now, maybe now, is the time to have the best spring ever. To celebrate new life and new growth. To plant things and nurture them to bud in the scorched earth that was left behind after it all fell apart.
So I’m going to go out and find the new things I love. It will be a beautiful spring. And I will use it to build up to another perfect summer.
I will use this to be kinder and have more patience. To move past my anger and regret. Because it will tear me apart if I don’t.
So to new beginnings, my friends. To new friends and new haircuts, new clothes and new jobs. To hope springing eternal and maybe, just maybe.