We’re at that point of the year where the light feels particularly precious, and I’m not just talking about the shortening days as winter rolls in. For me, it’s a time where the long nights match a deep ebb in my reserves. It’s never a good time of year, with awful memories attached, and so distraction becomes more important than ever.
Cultures all round the world celebrate at this time of year. From the lights of Eid and the candles of All Hallows, to the bonfires of the solstice and the bright bursts of fireworks, there’s a defiance against the night’s dark that draws us all together in our communities.
In addition to these external lights are the bright lights of the people, events and kindnesses around me. A smile and a reassuring hug, or the sound of laughter in a pub, or a grudging compliment from a member of staff can equally let light bloom across darkened moods and frazzled nerves.
This is why I don’t shut myself away, even when I desperately want to. It doesn’t matter if it’s a helping hand or a kick up the arse, the support network I’m blessed with keeps the lights shining far better than explosions in the distance.
It’s been a long year that has chipped away at the attempts to live an awesome life. Getting back to that ideal is easier with the light you all (sometimes unknowingly) provide.