Wednesday, February 25, 2015

I Love You & I Like You: A Farewell to Parks and Recreation

So I decided that I would do a post about my favorite show, Parks & Rec, even though the series finale just happened, and I am STILL a blubbering mess. I have been with the show since the very first episode, and I will be a die-hard Pawneeian until the day I die. Not only did this show make me laugh and cry harder than I ever have, it's seven seasons taught me so much. Amy Poehler is truly remarkable in every sense, and it's without question that she is one of my role models. The way she (and the rest of the cast and crew) made the characters come alive every week truly have touched something in my heart, and I can honestly say I have never been this emotionally invested in a television show. So without further ado, here are the best lessons Leslie Knope & her friends have taught me...

1) It's OK To Dream Big: From the moment we met Leslie, surveying children in the park while simultaneously helping a drunken man out of a slide, you could tell she was an extremely driven woman. Throughout the years, not only did Leslie, but every character showed us that no matter what tries to knock you down, they can't knock down your dreams and your drive. With hard work and imagination, you can do anything you set your mind to, whether it's becoming the first female president, or opening your own business, or even having people finally get your name right. She shows us that living life with enthusiasm and passion is way more rewarding than being apathetic.

2) It's Nice To Be Important, But It's More Important To Be Nice: I don't think I have ever looked up to a fictional character as much as I look up to Leslie Knope. Both her and Amy have inspired me in so many ways, and the kindness Leslie shows to everyone she meets is so important. Not only has Leslie shown us that being kind and appreciative does truly get you far in life, but every character (in their own twisted way) shows us that being true to yourself will do nothing but benefit you and your success.

3) Follow Your Heart: When Leslie was dating police officer Dave Sanderson, he revealed that he would be transferring to California and wanted Leslie to come with him. Leslie knew in her heart that it wasn't the right choice for her, and turned down the offer & broke it off with Dave to stay in Pawnee. Fast forward to season three, where Leslie Knope meets Ben Wyatt. Leslie listened to her heart and stayed where she was, and ended up with the absolute love of her life, and she knows that she is right where she needs to be. Whether it be a job, a friendship, or a relationship, Parks taught us that the right choice is always when you follow where your heart wants you to go. Because more than often, your heart knows you better then you think.

4) Treat Your Self: Donna Meagle and Tom Haverford gave us the wonder that is 'Treat Yo Self', and although you don't have to go to the extremes that these two do (unless that's what you want, then by all means, go for it), it's nice to show some love and take time for yourself. No one will be able to love you as much as you can love yourself, so it's crucial to Treat Yo Self right.

5) Uteruses Before Duderuses:  While the relationships on this show make my heart break into a trillion pieces every time I think about them, the friendships are what truly have made it special. Leslie and Ann's friendship is the poster child for how every friendship should be: they're each other's go-to person, they'll do anything for each other, and their friendship is so solid that not even Ann moving to Michigan could break it. Leslie's friends mean so, so much to her, and she shows us that every year with Galentine's Day, a celebration for lady friends. The support and love that the friendships on this show portray are so genuine, and make me want to be the best friend possible.

I could go on for days, really, about my love for this show. but I decided to showcase my five favorite lessons I've taken away from the Pawnee Parks Department. Thank you, Parks and Recreation, for inspiring me, making me laugh, making me cry, and wanting to be a better person. This show truly has changed my life in the BEST ways possible, and I will miss it more than words can say.

I love you, and I like you.

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