Myth of Happy Endings

I just revisited a great story called Message in a Bottle, written by best-selling author Nicholas Sparks. Although it is essentially a romance drama, it does not have the happy ending we yearn for in a romantic story. This would be a let-down for some readers, because we cling tenaciously to the idea of happy endings, particularly in love.

The whole idea of the happy ending ties into my last post, Courage to Love. So if indeed love does not always work out in the way we hope for, why have courage to love at all?

The idea of the classic happy ending is very superficial and one-dimensional within the context of our infinite souls. The happy ending suggests a destination in this particular life, a utopian ideal of what love “should be”, rather than what it is.

What it IS is our opportunity to learn from each other. In the case of Message in a Bottle, there is so obvious learning and growth for the two main characters, Theresa and Garrett. Their ability to love better and deeper expands. For any reader or viewer (it is a movie too) who is able to let go of their need for the cliché happy ending, it is an immensely satisfying story.

There are many types of love, not just the ones with romantic partners. Check out this article for more on that: The Ancient Greeks’ 6 Words for Love (And Why Knowing Them Can Change Your Life)

What loves have you encountered in your life and what did you learn from them? (This is very personal, so I’m not fishing for comments.) The point of the question is, that when we realize the beauty, depth, and learning with each love encounter and are able to heal the wounds associated with an “unhappy ending”, we grow and have the courage to invite more love in.

Within the context of our infinite selves, this could be deemed as “happy without end”.


Myth of Happy Endings © Susan L Hart 2021 | Friendly comments welcome | Photo courtesy Nietjuh, Pixabay

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