I just finished watching Battlestar: Razor last night (I know, I'm a bit behind, but it's the Netflix thing). I'm not sure how I felt about it. The story seemed out of place after the ending of the previous season, I wanted more about the main characters and less about the new character, and I was a little lost from having forgotten some of the previous season. So the show itself was an "eh" for me.
However, I watched the "My Favorite Episode" bonus feature on the disc and that's what I've been thinking about all day. It was a short interview with various cast members, asking them what their favorite episode was. Inevitably, the episode they liked the most was the episode that challenged their acting the most. It was the energy they had to put into the episode and the stretching of their talents which made them remember one particular episode out of so many that they've done.
At first, I thought they were all a bit pretentious ("My favorite episode was the one that centered on my character's struggles"), but then I realized that I actually kind of liked the fact that everyone's favorite episode was the one in which they had to work the hardest. It's one of those strange experience/memory juxtapositions that I've experienced time and again. The things that are really hard, and that when I'm doing them make me wish I was doing something different, something easier--those are the things I'm often most proud of. My books are one of them: how many times have I wished to be done with this last one, with each one as I'm writing it, yet I'm incredibly proud of each one once I've finished it--even if they still need work. My education was another: I just about quit college my sophomore year, but ended up graduating magna cum laude, another thing I'm incredibly proud of.
I think this same phenomenon occurs with travel, too: those god-awful experiences when your traveling are sometimes the things you look back on with the most fondness. For instance, years ago when I was in Rome, it was so hot and humid and I was traveling with everything in a backpack on my back, crammed into a tiny bus full of people who didn't wear deodorant, and I was wilting from exhaustion having not slept the night before on the train ride from France, but I vividly remember that bus ride and the sights I saw along the way, the different side of Rome that I saw then compared to what I saw walking it on foot the next few days. I remember that more than I remember parts of Venice, later, when I was content and relaxed.
So I took a little inspiration from that "My Favorite Episodes" interview: to cherish the things that make me struggle and know that I'm growing, achieving, and remembering more than if I coasted.