A Light in the Dark

Bright spots do shine in the world. What is a bright spot for you these days?

I read too much news and feel we’re very much in darkness. But as Dumbledore reminds us, “Happiness can be found, even in the darkest of times, if one only remembers to turn on the light.” How does one turn that on though exactly?

I make art and tell stories. Spend time with loved ones and dogs.

The other day I got into a debate with someone who said that negative things only happened to people with a negative mindset. I took issue. He went on to argue that even if something bad happens to you, you can choose to react to it with a positive mindset. You don’t have to let it keep you down, so to speak.

The mind is a powerful thing. Yes. Can we just control it? … I suppose if it is easy for you to choose how you feel, then it must seem bizarre that others can’t. This is true with a lot of things though, isn’t it? What’s easy for us, must just be easy. Anyone can do it! If only they would try!

I wonder though about the insistence on happiness. Happiness is a wonderful thing, but seriously. If you were happy 24 hours a day, you’d be a psychopath. I’m reminded of original Star Trek episodes were the crew encountered people completely blissed out, and we’d learn it was because they were under mind control or drugged by some strange, evil flower or something. Kirk and company brought them to reality, of course. It was the right thing to do!

Sometimes I suspect the reason some people blame unhappy people for being unhappy is because isn’t that easier than considering how they might have contributed or benefited from the other’s misery? If it’s their own fault, “no one can blame you for walking away.”

Other times I suspect we’re avoiding uncomfortable emotions. We don’t know what to do or to say. We might have to face our own uncomfortable feelings. When I’m faced with someone who’s struggling, I really want to “fix” the problem and make everything better, as if I have super powers. To let someone be sad feels wrong, but maybe sometimes it’s okay. Sometimes we can be sad.

Maybe we don’t have to feel bad about it.

The other day I listened to an interview with Eve Ensler on the Write-Minded podcast. Ensler said something that has stayed with me. She talked about entering the wound and going through it and how much it hurts but how ultimately healing it is. She said, “Don’t park in front of it.”

This made me think of friends at different points in their journeys. Some are going through the wound and it’s painful. It’s massively painful. But they are going through. A few others I worry are parked in front.

The only way out is through. (To paraphrase Robert Frost, I think.) But it helps to have a light on.

Be the light for someone, people. Don’t be the jackass who shoots out the bulb.

3 thoughts on “A Light in the Dark

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