Two years ago I watched the last episode of LOST, having spent the previous year re-watching, tweeting, blogging and just about inhaling the series on an almost daily basis. I walked to my bed that night, satisfied with the ending. Not just satisfied, but joyful over the way it ended, and brought the story of LOST full circle with the closing of the same eye that opened the 6 years of enthralling television.
The show met me in the time of my life where I had many successes and lots of regrets. The stage of my life that I lived in the summer of 2009 was an uproar of my own making, a plane wreck if we want to speak metaphorically. I was trying to fix myself, I my life had become unmanageable because of an addiction, and at that time I was white knuckling the withdrawals and trying to fix myself. In a way, the reason LOST finale resonated so well with me, is between the end of season 5 and the beginning of season 6 I had reached the end of myself, and started seeking the help of a recovery community. There, in that community of messed up souls, I found a connection with fellow strugglers, that resonated many large themes of LOST. It very well may be that seeing LOST through the lens of that experience I’m reading my own struggle into that work of fiction, and I’ll admit it. Because face it, we all do that.
As a confessing Christian, I also viewed LOST through those glasses, and the themes of forgiveness, loyalty, redemption, sacrifice and community certainly made those facets of the show more vivid to me. The symbols of light and dark, water and fire triggered many things I’ve learned from the scriptures, and helped me to form a tighter understanding of my own faith.
I’ve used LOST scenes to teach some of tenets of recovery, the need to come to grips with our past, what ever happened, what I did, sort through them, then let them go. The reason the finale of LOST resonated with me, is I saw all of the characters I loved pass through that as they remembered the island and the important things that happened to them. Those characters and their shared experience (both the good times and the bad times) are what saved them. Not from the smoke monster and his quest to extinguish the light, but from themselves and their willingness to ignore the light.
When Hurley drank the water Jack offered as a rite, and became like Jack is, I knew the Island is in the best of hands. It will continue to be a place where messed up people like me can find other people to hold on to, to struggle with, and to over come. We all need a place like the island, a place where we can be together.
I can let go of lots of things in my life, I need to let go of a lot more, but the lessons I learned through LOST about love, life, forgiveness and endurance… Those, I’ll hold onto.