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In praise of ‘Sex’, and love

Series finale showed how Carrie and crew have grown and matured over the years
/ Source: msnbc.com

When it all comes down to it, we're all looking for big love, and “Sex and the City” gave its fans just that — a big finish to a landmark series that, despite its title, was ultimately about love.

And after six seasons of passion and heartache, the tale of Carrie Bradshaw found a happy ending. Yes, she finally got the words and the affection she’s always wanted from Mr. Big. As a fan of the show, I have to admit I was leery of the “perfect ending” scenario. I wasn’t sure that I wanted Carrie to end up with Mr. Big — who we now know is called John.

In the end, Carrie does abandon Aleksandr and Paris and return to New York with Big, but the person she really ends up with is herself. This is the perfect ending because in life, there is no perfect ending. Instead, we find happiness in places and with people we didn’t expect, or love with a person who might have seemed destined to always be a big disappointment.

Carrie was never going to end up with the Russian. They had nothing in common and she lost herself in his grand life and his grandiose ego. He was Paris, she was New York. She was forced to give up herself to try and fit into Aleksandr’s world, but in the end their passion was lost in translation. Aleksandr didn’t speak her language — a very familiar story for many real women.

And Carrie Bradshaw isn’t just a single woman, she is a woman in full. She has worked hard to achieve her success, to develop her own style. She has mellowed with age, building a confidence in herself through disappointment, love, heartbreak, experience and knowing that man or no man, she could always rely on herself and her friends — “the loves of her life”.

In a show that was celebrated for its outrageously frank discussions of sex and dating, it was always really a show about love — the love between Carrie and her friends, and their desire to find “real love ... can’t-live-without-each-other love.”

Ch-ch-ch- changesWhat I enjoyed most about the finale is that we finally were able to see the evolution of all the characters.

Miranda, the cynical career woman who never let herself open up to any man is now a mother, married to everyman bartender Steve, who wasn’t scared off by her hard veneer and saw the real woman inside.

Charlotte, the preppie girl who thought she found the perfect Park Avenue address and Park Avenue man, discovered that images are often distorted and that love can come in very Harry packages.

And what of Samantha, who was often played for laughs and tore through men with the zest and appetite of, well, men? She always lived life on her terms and for the moment. But after surviving Mr. Wrong and cancer, she found happiness with Smith, who was never supposed to be more than just another fling.

And finally, Carrie herself, the woman who mixed Dior with cheap street gold and never met a Manolo Blahnik she didn’t love. She fell in, and out, and in, and out of love with Big, broke the heart of (and had her heart broken by) Aidan and discovered that her perfect fit, Berger, was a mismatch.

As she grew older, her skirts got longer and her spirit occasionally withered, but she never gave up hope of finding what we all hope to find — the person who speaks our language, in a lover, a spouse or a good friend. As the series ends, we don’t really know if she and Big are destined to be together forever —just that they are finally on the same page.

I'll miss Carrie and her friends. I’ll miss their outrageous lunch conversations, their stunning clothing, their perplexing choices and most of all their devotion to each other. That is a true love story, worth telling over and over.

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