Student takes valuable life lessons from Grey's Anatomy

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Kristina Wyman's picture
Kaitlyn Akers

At the beginning and end of every episode of Grey’s Anatomy, a main character, normally Meredith Grey, always has something witty and insightful to say. Of course, there are a few that are full of medical terminology, but there are also some that open your eyes and make you think.

Looking back it’s easy to see when a mistake has been made. But if we use our best judgment and listen to our hearts we’re more likely to see that we chose wisely and avoid the deepest most painful regret of them all, the regret that comes from letting something amazing pass you by.

There have been countless occasions when I’ve tried to record what Meredith said (which ended in me being on Google for hours) because they were insightful, regardless of being taken out of context.

Let me back up; for those who are unfamiliar with Grey’s, it follows doctors through their day-to-day life in a hospital. They suffer through broken hearts, dying patients, cheating spouses and doctors coming and going.

The stories seem crazy, almost as if they would never happen (and my sister Jenea, a nurse, would agree and tell you seven different ways the situation could be handled) but regardless, Grey’s Anatomy is still one of my favorite shows.

If you asked me to, I couldn’t sum up the past 10 seasons, because way too much has happened. Between characters dying and your favorite couples breaking up, fans have been sent into complete distress.
And, of course, we can all thank Shonda Rhimes for our hurt and loss, as she is the writer and creator of Grey’s Anatomy (and other shows like Scandal), who gets a sick, twisted pleasure from making us cry.

Why does it feel so good to get rid of things? To unload, to let go. Maybe because when we see how little we actually need to survive, it makes us realize how powerful we actually are to strip down to only what we need, to hang on to only what we can’t do without, not just to survive, but to thrive.

Ten seasons into Grey’s Anatomy and I still look forward to every episode and I couldn’t give you a concrete reason why. Maybe it’s because, for an hour every week, I get to watch doctors solve the impossible; maybe it’s because I get to relate to a struggling character and root them on (given that they are still alive by the end of the season).

And maybe, just maybe, it’s because those quotes, which set the tone for the episode, are relatable, inspirational and sometimes funny. I’m not saying that’s why I watch it every week, but it certainly adds to the show and to the drama that will probably ensue.

In the most recent episode of Grey’s, we see April and Jackson fighting his mother over a prenuptial agreement. April left her fiancé at the alter for Jackson, and quickly married him. This led to a series of events that have thrown the hospital out of whack, including a new relationship restriction which impacts everyone, as most are married or hooking up with interns and other doctors.

And in the typical Shonda-like fashion, at least one person will die in every episode, whether it be a character we love, someone who came into the emergency room or, because we’re lucky, we even got to meet and then watch painfully as Alex’s father dies.

There’s an end to every storm. Once all the trees have been uprooted. Once all the houses have been ripped apart. The wind will hush, the clouds will part, the rain will stop, the sky will clear in an instant. But only then, in those quiet moments after the storm, do we learn who was strong enough to survive it.

For those who have a faint heart, I don’t recommend Grey’s because it can be gory (as they vividly show surgeries) and your heart will get torn into a million pieces, get briefly stitched back together and then torn apart again by the characters.

But for those who need a show to watch on Netflix or for those who like to have their hearts ripped out and stomped on, then Grey’s is for you. There is still much to happen this season, with Cristina Yang leaving and Dr. Burke returning (although I’m not quite sure why), and there is no telling what will happen with Grey’s. It is, after all, Shonda that we are talking about.

We do our very best, but sometimes it’s just not good enough. We buckle our seatbelts, we wear a helmet, we stick to the lighted paths, we try to be safe. We try so hard to protect ourselves, but it doesn’t make a damn bit of difference. Cause when the bad things come, they come out of nowhere. The bad things come suddenly, with no warning. But we forget that sometimes that’s how the good things come too.

And Meredith is right, because without warning, we run into the best things in life and we can take them in any value, in any shade of grey, and we can embrace them with open arms.

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