A few years ago, I picked up the Grey’s Anatomy Season 1 DVD at Target. This was on Black Friday so for $2, how could I resist? A short, 9-episode season was simple enough to get through, especially since I was in high school and my #firstworldproblems didn’t take up too much time.
Fast forward to now, to a reality that includes working from home and all of the indulgences that come with it. For two hours everyday, Lifetime shows Grey’s Anatomy and I’ve found myself crying at least once per episode. Some of my closest friends are Grey’s junkies, so it’s easy to see how I could fall into a binge.
Transitioning into a full-time job, moving to the center of Los Angeles, and planning a wedding with a fiance who is thousands of miles away has been anything but easy. Pretending to grow up, or pretending to be young–however you want to see it–takes you on quite the emotional rollercoaster. I’ve done my best to let go of the unnecessary negative energy (read: “drama”) in my life, mostly stemming from the interesting folks I met in college.
Thanks to the psychology of binge-watching serialized TV shows, I get to delve into all juicy gossip and action of Seattle Grace Hospital. Then I get to sleep at night without worrying about who hates me or what’s being said about who and how that affects my day. I spent yesterday with friends watching Season 1 and at 1am, I found myself starting Season 2 on Netflix. In bed. On my cell phone. I get so emotionally invested in these types of series and spend hours watching one episode after another. Before I know it, the day is gone and progress towards my goals remains stagnant.
But for a few hours, I get to experience a catharsis that is necessary to get through what’s on my plate. Working on the friendships that matter, building a marriage based more on miles than anything else, and trying to dream bigger…all while keeping the predators at bay. I scream at the TV, cover my eyes when I can’t handle the graphic images, and tear up at every joyous, sad, or revealing moment. I’ve even compared it to watching sports. I hang onto the opening credits, smirking at how clever and beautiful it is. Meredith’s voice-overs speak truth to my life, give me insight as I watch the days pass me by. Hearing every character list their erratic personality traits and then beg for acceptance makes the world seem a little less crazy. The show is executed so artfully from the writing, to the character development, even the smoldering gazes… and seriously, they are in a hospital all the time (with the exception of the scenic views of Seattle) and somehow, the setting is still adventurous. Being invested in this show is definitely draining and quite the distraction from dealing with real life, but I can’t help appreciating and embracing it.