I know this seems silly.It seems silly that I am sitting in church thinking about how a show about vampires is over.
I get it.
But as I am sitting here in church I am thinking about another church I used to sit in a lot. I sat in it mostly on Sunday nights, sometimes the mornings, for about five years. And there was a time in that period of about 2-3 years that I cried every single time.
I wouldn’t really break down during the week. I wouldn’t get emotional during therapy. I sometimes cried myself to sleep. Or on my walks to and from work.
But without fail, every Sunday I would kneel at the cross in the back left corner of the sanctuary to take communion and I would sob. I would cry and I would leave all the tears and all the anguish at the foot of the cross.
Hope for me was something for others. It was something that was tangible to a whole hell of a lot of people. It was something I felt capable of giving but not receiving.
So on Sundays I cried.
Let me delve a little before fall of 2009:
In June of 2009 I wanted to kill myself.
I wanted to be done. It all hurt too much. It didn’t make sense. I couldn’t see how I could go on.
I saw a flickering light in the midst of a dark room. I knew it was God. I knew it was hope.
But after that I was numb.
I couldn’t always find the words to say to people. I powered through a summer of day camp. I went to therapy once a week. I tried to wear a smile.
And come the fall, with the school year beginning again and so many other things that felt big and heavy I decided to start watching a new show that was so debuting on the CW.
So on Fridays after work, I watched the Vampire Diaries.
As I wrote in a letter to the creators, this show gave me light in the darkness.
It brought me back to myself when it felt like all the things around me that were supposed to be helping weren’t working. (They were by the way, I just couldn’t see it).
The show brought me back to story.
And that is beautiful.
It gave me a voice in the midst of a depression that wanted to and sometimes succeeded at silencing me.
It made me laugh.
And mostly, most importantly, it reminded me I wasn’t alone.
It gave me that hope I so desperately wanted to have.
And I found this community of people who didn’t know me or my problems or my depression. They didn’t know I was a kid person or a “failing” Christian.
They just knew I had zippy comebacks. That I was Team Elijah.
And slowly, slowly, they started to put me back together when I didn’t think anything was working.
It gave me place to laugh and to cry. Real emotions when none of mine felt real anymore.
So I know it seems silly that I was so emotionally invested in a show about vampires. That I broke down into tears when it finally settled in me that it was over.
But, in the darkest parts of my life, the healing of someone else’s dark parts, in the form of a story about vampire brothers in love with a girl, allowed me to look away from my tragedy and find emotion again without even realizing it.
It helped me feel again.
So, one day, when I have a teenager who is going through teen angst and probably thinks I’m not cool, or when she’s in college and homesick and heartsick, we will make some cookies and throw on our sweats and I’ll click play…
“For over a century I have lived in secret,
Hiding in the shadows, alone in the world.
I am a vampire,
And this my story”
Thank you TVD for all the things.