December 24, 2004

“I won’t call for eight years. December 24, 2004. Christmas Eve. I promise. Please, Pen.”

In my favorite show, LOST – the character Penny (in the above scene) is considered, by the character Desmond, to be his constant – the person that keeps him anchored to reality, as he travels through time. In this season 4 episode, Penny finally receives the long-ago promised call from Desmond. The night Desmond shows up at her home, eight years prior (above), she is angry and wants only for him to leave. She eventually regrets this – eventually stopping at nothing – to find out what’s happened to him.

It’s not really a Christmas episode. But somehow it is, just the same. What a gift this moment (below) becomes. By this point in the show, you’re longing to see some kind of victory for the “LOSTies.” This call is just that, for a number of reasons. It’s also a beautiful part of the love story for Desmond & Penny. You sort of just know their story will come together after this point. I first saw this episode so long ago now. It is and always will be a favorite.

As a writer, I’m drawn to big moments like the second video. The reunification, the declaration, the romance of two people finding each other through time and space. Toward the end of the first video, you see Desmond walk away from Penny’s home, with a smile on his face. He’s smiling, even though she’s just pushed him out the door, because he knows – because he’s been there already, that she will answer that call on December 24, 2004. And though it looks bleak, as she expresses her anger, he walks away knowing what will eventually happen. He walks off content with the knowledge that this moment is not the end for them. As the scene plays out, with both expressing their love and commitment, I’m reminded of how unlike real life is from the very things I write or those things I am drawn to in literature, movies, TV shows, etc.

Unlikely, improbable, and a fool’s errand, could describe the likelihood of a love story coming together like what the writer of a romcom, movie, or film project, writes. And yet, it’s still moments like these with a little more reality sprinkled in, that I’ll just keep hoping for – improbable though they are.

Nothing is impossible to a willing heart.

~ John Heywood

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