LOST’s finale and your relationships

It’s been a long time since a TV show has provoked such turmoil in its audience. Since the finale of LOST, which took place on Sunday, May 23rd there has been nothing but incredible speculation and buzz regarding the significance of the show.  What exactly did the island represent? Who actually built the statue? How come women cannot give birth on the island?  How come Walt isn’t in the church? What is the light?  How come we were not provided with any answers to these and many other questions?  Unlike most finales, the finale of LOST did not provide the final definitive answers to all the viewers’ questions. Why?

According to many blogs and reports, half the audience loved the finale of LOST and the other half were very dissatisfied it. Although I have not watched this show I couldn’t help but notice the buzz; therefore I asked a friend of mine who had religiously watched the show since its inception to fill me on the underlying themes and plots to help me see if I could begin to understand the strong controversy and difference of opinions swirling around the show’s finale. Although I hadn’t watched LOST, my friend’s take on it fascinated me.

Here’s a summary of what she said:

The finale was emotional and powerful and really brought the show full circle. What I got out of it is that the people that you go through life with are more important than the actual experiences you have. Life is full of questions and we never really get all the answers. To succeed in life and move on (whatever moving on to you means) you need to do it with other people. No one can truly do it alone.

All the “losties” were, in a sense “lost” in life their life before they were ever on the island. They were lonely people who lacked a sense of purpose to their lives. By living on this crazy and mysterious island they were able to find a purpose and develop bonds of friendship and love they had eluded them in the past.

Now here is the dilemma:  half the audience wanted all their questions answered.  They were looking for clear, coherent explanations for all the crazy twists and turns of plots that the characters experienced on the island.  They felt the finale left most of their questions unanswered.  Without these answers, they felt the finale rang hollow.  As I was listening to my friend speak, I thought about how angry and confused people become when life throws us a curveball; especially when we do not have an explanation for it and it makes life seems so unfair. This lack of explanation for when things go wrong in our lives make most of us furious. We often find ourselves thinking: “Just help me understand why. Help me make some sense of this situation so I can get a grip on it and try to begin to handle it”.  Tragedy in life is bad enough; senseless tragedy is even worse!

My friend went on to tell me that she was initially a little disappointed with  the finale, but as she gave it some thought, she considered it to be a stroke of genius. She told me it reminded her of my relationship expertise and values which are predicated upon the belief that what you have in life and what you do with your life is not nearly as significant as the people with whom you share your life’s journey and experiences.

My friend continued to describe how beautiful it was to watch the characters she had grown to love over the past 6 years come together and reunite; she could really feel the love among these people. She felt the finale was so powerful that even someone unfamiliar with the entire series would still get a tremendous amount out of watching it.  She acknowledged the fact there are 50% of the viewers out there who totally disagree with her. And she felt this was another reason why the finale of LOST was so powerful and will; therefore, be analyzed and talked about for many years.

After listening to my friend’s summary, the controversy and buzz surrounding the show and its finale fascinates and intrigues me.

Anyone who knows me has heard me say many times that a healthy happy relationship is the foundation for everything else you do.  Stephen Covey, author of the best-seller “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People” believes all success begins with relationships – and the ability to sustain these relationships.  My belief that a balanced healthy life begins with healthy relationships is not limited to romantic relationships, but encompasses all types of relationships, e.g., siblings, parent/child, girlfriends, colleagues etc.  Without these relationships, we are, indeed, LOST!

From what my friend told me about LOST it sounds like the “what” of the story is the most powerful aspect of the show and  not the” who”,   She told me to watch the last 15 minutes or so, and so I took a quick glimpse. I didn’t know anything about the characters but I was so deeply moved when I watched some of the couples reunite in the “sideways” world! I could really feel the love – and it was so incredibly powerful!!

If you are a LOST fan what did you think about the finale? Let me know – I am intrigued!

Dr. Patty Ann
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