And Now My Watch Has Ended
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And Now My Watch Has Ended

Everything must come to an end and it's not that bad when it does.

And Now My Watch Has Ended

Although spring is a time for new beginnings and growth (and the subsequent growing pains) this spring has been more focused on the end of the cycle and not without good reason. The reason has been harder to tease out than I expected but the moment I understood, everything aligned clear as day.

The first blow was Endgame. Avengers: Endgame came out in April and since then, I have been consciously aware of my adolescence slipping away. The Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) did for me what Harry Potter did for my childhood. It inducted me into the true depths of geek/pop culture and the community with it. The common ground of a superhero movie helped me connect to and make some of the best friends of my life.

In 2012, screencaps and fan fiction (I know) of The Avengers had my twelve-almost-thirteen-year-old body staying up until 2 AM just for a few seconds worth of content. With each passing second, I grew more and more enamored with these random adults and the comic book characters they were embodying. To see a monolith that rose right at the beginning of my teen years fall right at the close of them is a parallel that I wouldn't put past Disney to plan.

Unlike Disney, I'm not much of a planner but I must confess that if I had known what kind of ride I'd be stepping on all those years ago, the only thing I would've done differently is to make sure I was first in line.

And then there's the fall of the other monolith. As the title music aired for the last time, a significant portion of my heart stuck with the orchestra (if you listen closely, you might be able to hear my weeping in the background). Like The Avengers, Game of Thrones did more than it ever had to do, full stop.

I know that Season 8 was… questionable… but for all that the show and book series have given me, I can forgive some interesting choices. (Maybe.) Game of Thrones (in conjunction with other factors from 2016-17) literally helped me pick one of my majors. After watching how the characters interact and weigh their own power and desire against everyone else inducted me to the world of politics and political science followed close behind.

I could go on for days about the characters, their motivations, etc., and it's because the show means so much to me. It's intriguing, complex, reality checking, and above all else, interrogating. The show makes the viewers question power and who we believe is competent enough to wield it by tossing out a large chunk of obvious candidates and giving power to those who were originally underestimated.

The uniting thread between these two is that they are the effective end of their respective series. They were both rough for everyone who cared and it was rough because it had to be. If the end doesn't hurt, then what were the point of even going through the beginning and the middle? If at the end we aren't sad to see it end, angry about how it ended, or happy that we experienced it, quite frankly the story failed. This is harsh, I know and not all endings will or even should elicit such powerful emotional responses, but when they do, they are the definition of bittersweet.

The last monolith that I can see preparing to topple is my own adolescence. Like a drum roll, the days have been steadily marching down until after Endgame, after Game of Thrones, my ten years of marking my age with 1- crumble into dust. I won't even pretend to sugarcoat it and say it was the best time of my life, it hurt a lot in a lot of different ways.

I became (and am becoming) myself and learned (and am learning) what exactly that entails especially in regards to the rest of the world. Oh, boy, does the rest of the world have opinions. Thank god I also learned (and am learning) how to separate fact from opinion and reality from illusion. There is much illusion throughout my adolescence and every time one faded into the mist I was less angry and more invested in all of the many facets of life.

A story, a cycle, really, must consist of all its parts and all of the parts against each other are what make the whole so wonderful. I do not mourn the end of these two very prominent aspects of my adolescence any more than I mourn my adolescence. They were and are lessons learned and learning. All things that rise must set eventually. Eleven and eight year long days do not warrant a lifetime sitting in the dark of night. They warrant a night's rest before you smile and remember them in the daylight. As I look towards the yawning mouth of my next decade of life, I feel a profound sense of hope and ability. I came of age among heroes and villains, White Walkers and dragons. And now my watch has ended. All I can say is thank you to what kept me at my post.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

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