A certain darkness is needed to see the stars!
by Skip Cohen
It's Sunday and if you've followed me for even the shortest time, then you know today is when I step entirely away from business and marketing. Writing is therapeutic, and many years ago, Sunday mornings became my day to just go with whatever was in my heart.
I'm not sure why this morning, but I'm thinking a lot about how much we've all gone through over the last couple of years - before words like hunkered down, mandatory masks, and pandemic became a part of our regular vocabulary. Then, while looking for quotes that might help me express myself, I ran across the one above. And that took me right to one of my most favorite photographs, by my good buddy Bob Coates.
It's a remarkable shot, but then so is Bob. We've been good friends for many years, and if you know him, then you know he never does anything halfway! But this isn't about the shot, but the fact that without darkness, the image wouldn't exist.
Going back to that simple quote I started this with, I've learned that everything always works out for the better. I'm not suggesting you should just accept everything that goes wrong in life; just look at it differently. For example, the pandemic has been horrible, and we've all had to adapt to changes in lifestyle, the heartbreak of losing friends, etc. But out of the chaos and pain came a renewed sense of family, the likes of which haven't been seen since the 50s.
Now, take a step back and think about some of the most brutal storms you've had to get through in your life. I know it's trite and even hokey - but think about it - you're stronger now because of them. They helped you grow.
There are a thousand quotes we've all heard over the years...It's darkest before the dawn...Without change, there'd be no butterflies...Every cloud has a silver lining...Calm waters don't make skilled sailors...and the list goes on and on. They're all saying the same thing.
It's funny how I started writing this and thinking what I was about to share was so earth-shaking, but reading it over, it's hardly brilliant. But maybe that's what more of us need these days - the simplicity of just accepting the paths we've chosen. It's okay to look back now and then, but not with regrets, only pride at moving forward.
Sheila's got a great line I grew to love years ago. Whenever I'd say, "You know what I should have done?" Her response was always the same, "Don't should on yourself!"
Wishing everybody a day ahead where you just keep looking forward. Make it a day when you appreciate the incredible world you've created - not the big one, just the one that's yours and includes the people who have touched your life the most and whose lives you're a part of. Go for those eleven-second hugs with those people most important to you.
And to my good buddy Bob, who right about now is just waking up to the sunrise in Sedona...thanks, buddy. I sure do appreciate our friendship.
Happy Sunday, everybody...or Monday if you're on the other side of the world!
Image copyright Bob Coates. All rights reserved.
Check out "Why?" one of the most popular features on the SCU Blog. It's a very simple concept - one image, one artist and one short sound bite. Each artist shares what makes the image one of their most favorite. We're over 100 artists featured since the project started. Click on the link above and you can scroll through all of the episodes to date.