game of thrones
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The Void Left by Game of Thrones

First of all, this is not about how the Game of Thrones story ended. Whether you loved it, hated it or were simply “meh,” doesn’t matter to me at this point. What matters to me is that it’s gone.

The show ending has had an impact on me that I never expected. After all, it’s just a TV show, right? That’s what I told myself leading up to the end and how I might feel afterward. But it turns out that though it is “just a TV show,” it’s meant a lot more than that to me.

I’ve cried quite a bit. Hell, I’m crying now just thinking about it. I haven’t been able to bring myself to watch any of it again, much less write an article about it. Flipping the page to June on my GoT calendar was painful (and not just because the main image went from Daenerys to The Hound.) And I’ve berated myself for the past month for being this upset about the loss of, I’ll say it again, a TV show.

But now, with the help of some friends and my husband, I’ve started to change my thinking. Even though I can’t reach out and touch it, or talk to it, the show is still much like a person to me. The anticipation at the start of each season was akin to seeing a friend I hadn’t seen in a while. And I spent an intense amount of time with that friend for the duration of the last season, watching each episode multiple times and then talking about it on podcasts and with my real-life friends.

That feeling is gone, and it may never be replaced by anything else. I can, of course, go back and watch the show any time I want, but it’s not the same. Watching it now feels more like looking at old photos of someone you’ll never see again, and I haven’t been able to bring myself to watch any of it since it ended.

I know this will get better with time, as all grief does. I know there’s a lot more to be explored that even I missed though my 11 watch-throughs. I know at some point I’ll want to see the gate rise at Castle Black and watch three random characters meet their doom beyond the wall. I’ll want to see the dragons born. I’ll want to see Jon kill a White a Walker and I’ll definitely want to see Arya kill the Night King again. I’m just not there yet.