Updated: Oct 31, 2019
I took this photo on the dusk of a bright sunny day. As I uploaded the photo to my computer the next day, I started to reflect on the long, cold, and dark winter we had in St. Louis. I honestly struggled during the winter, because I felt stuck inside and depressed about not feeling the sun on my skin for so long. At times I felt unmotivated and melancholy. It forced me to reflect on areas of my life I was truly unhappy with, and how to spark joy and stay positive in the midst of the darkest, longest seasons. Although I knew I was learning, I still longed for a happier time. I was ready and willing to push past the long days of sad feelings and days without sunshine.
Suddenly, it was spring.
I started seeing little spots of green and the sun started making appearances day after day. It felt miraculous. Like viewing all black and white photos, and then seeing them again in color. After I took this photo, and marveled at this tree that displayed such beauty, I realized the depth and need for dark times. This tree burst forth with all of it's beauty and splendor after sitting in the dark, cold environment for quite some time. Like the tree, we go through hard times so that we are able to shine beautifully when it is our season to do so.
It's in the long, dark, and often hard times that we are transformed and prepared for the beauty and power we will soon bloom into.
Remember that without suffering there is no compassion.
Without the dark there is no light.
And I believe without your struggle, there is no growth.
Stay strong, positive, and open to learning the hard lessons; it's imperative to making it through the dark times.