“I’ve always been enchanted by the endings of things. Series finales and sunsets. Last paragraphs and encores. I think for the way they remind me that losing something you love isn’t always sad and heartbreaking, but sometimes breathtaking and beautiful” – ‘Endings’, Beau Taplin.
Over the weekend, “The Producers”, yet another musical I was involved in, came to a close. All in all, it was a great closing night, with a stellar audience, a swift bump-out, a bitchin’ afterparty and a gorgeous little goodbye video made by one of our leading men. As I was watching the video – which was a montage of rehearsal clips put to “Big Finish” from Smash – I thought about how the ending of this experience was so neatly wrapped up in nostalgia, pleasant memories, and the love of some brilliant new friends.
So after a year of downright horrible endings, this was a breath of fresh air.
In the last twelve months, my relationship with someone I had loved dearly fell apart. I saw the end of friendships at the hands of rumour and gossip. There was the closing night of a musical which had kept me distracted from a reality I didn’t want to face for so long; because most heartbreakingly of all, I witnessed the end of the life of a great man I am proud to call my grandfather. And even though the endings of these things weren’t desirable situations, I look back on the relationship, the friendships, the musical and my time with my grandfather with a great fondness. Sometimes I stumble across group messages from the summer and realise how much carefree and light-hearted shit we could talk with each other when we weren’t being hindered by other responsibilities or negativities. Sometimes I reflect upon what I learnt throughout my past relationship; important lessons about myself and how I experience love. I’m forever grateful for what “Fame”, my last musical, did for my mental health, because at the time, I really needed it. And I’ll never forget the guidance and wisdom of my Pop.
But now, one year on, I can look at these endings more objectively. The intense emotion I experienced when I was in the midst of the conclusions of these things is gone, and with a clear heart and mind I can acknowledge that these endings came when they were due. It was time for me to let go of some of these friendships, because it taught me a lesson about the kinds of people it is healthy for me to surround myself with, and the kinds of people it is not. The relationship ended when it did because there were underlying issues which meant we weren’t right for each other – to continue any further would only had exponentially increased any future heartache over the inevitable end. I needed to get back to reality after distracting myself for so long with “Fame” and deal with the situations which I’d been refusing to accept. And as much as I loved my Pop, and I sure as hell don’t think it was his time to go, it wasn’t right for him to suffer with a terminal illness any longer. Sometimes it’s hard to swallow, but it’s true when they say that good things come to an end.
So while I have had some horrible endings over the past twelve months, the ending of “The Producers” made me realise that sometimes, good things don’t end in heartbreak and sadness. It reminded me of smiling as I looked out of the window of the plane on the way home from Far North Queensland, reflecting on the beauty of the Great Barrier Reef, the Daintree Rainforest, and the exhilaration of a bungy jump. It reminded me of getting my marks back after the end of the last uni semester and getting first class honours on my favourite musical theatre subject. It reminded me of finishing a script I’d been working on for months. Of the season finale of Game of Thrones. Of crawling into bed after a night out with some genuinely lovely people.
Watching that closing night video gave me such a ecstatic feeling that I realised I’d been so hung up on the negative conclusion of things that were destined for their ending anyway that I’d forgotten to stop, appreciate, and importantly remember the happy endings life swings my way. So this is it. Happy or sad, endings happen for a reason, and from now on, I’ll take them as they come.