This picture inspires so many different feelings, specifically the drive I have in continuing this new adventure I’m on. This is my grandson Jason. He is 3 years old, very observant, super loving, and he makes everyone around him happy. He gives me the type of joy that heals any heart! He is so full of life and love, his refreshing eyes helps me be a better human being. He sees all the beautiful things in this world for the first time, and it renews my spirit.

I began thinking about this concept; seeing the world with fresh eyes. I imagine it helps push all the cobwebs out of those far recesses of the mind, hiding from the light that pushes its way through. The light always pushes its way through, but sometimes we’re not ready to let it into our world. We have to be ready for this light in order to see it. Life has the capability of offering up some nasty obstacles, and it is up to us to respond accordingly. During my dark days, I didn’t want to respond. I just wanted the dark to go away, but it doesn’t work this way. It works very much like a storm, which is why people use this metaphor so often.

We cannot avoid the dark days or wish them away, we must root ourselves deep, and hold on tight while the shadow of the storms hover over head. I didn’t want to face those shadows, so I ran. I made sure I was preoccupied with anything I could focus on, so I didn’t give my attention to the emotional transition that was happening. This was a mistake. It’s okay. We have the luxury of free will, so we make decisions where some are bad ones and some are good ones. How can we learn if we always make the right ones? I weathered that dark storm, made some mistakes, fell on my face a few times, but when the clouds moved along and passed me up, the sun popped through brighter than it had in a long time. The pain I survived cleared my head out, and gave me a new set of peepers.

This brings me back to this adorable face below. The new insight and perspective I now have helps me appreciate the most important parts of life, even more so. Loss, and surviving it forced me to absorb ALL things life-related with grace and patience. What was important 5 years ago isn’t important anymore. The simple beauties of life aren’t beautiful for any other reason than they are simple. Jason has been a perfect vehicle to teach me details about myself I needed to learn, like the pain I felt during the storms. There are characteristics about myself I never knew existed, and some I am working to smooth out. This sweet little face has brought an endless joy, and a new-found wisdom I did not realize I could have.

The dark times will always be there, they are a part of everyone’s experience at some time or another. You can either let them decide what type of life you want, or you can decide that for yourself. It is an exhausting decision, but must be made nonetheless. It’s easy to let an experience or an obstacle decide for you. It’s the lazy way out! We all like to be lazy once in a while, including myself. But, I get bored easy. I cannot sit still for 20 minutes without feeling the impetus to “do” something.

So, this picture represents what I intend on doing. I intend on moving forward with a smile. I intend on taking on heart-ache and disappointment and exasperation with a smile. I want to continue a journey in my professional life with a smile. I want to do all things with love…..and with a smile. It might not brighten the world the way this one does, but it will spark just enough light.

After all, in the dark, even a spark lights the way!