A few days ago, I woke to a beautiful day. I enjoyed watching the sun rise over the nearby mountains as I drove my son to school, but something changed as I drove home. The closer I got, the foggier it got. A huge cloud had blanketed our neighborhood while I was gone.
What a difference!
In just three blocks, I went from basking in the morning sun to totally enveloped in grey.
This got me thinking about perspective and circumstance. If I had woken a bit later, I would have labeled the whole day as gloomy. My son spent his whole day at school above the cloud, never knowing about the fog. If I had stayed in one place or the other, how different my perspective would have been.
But I didnt stay still.
I got to experience both the gloom and the light and appreciate them both. Moving into the fog, I was not discouraged, instead I realized how isolated an occurrence it was. I knew that just a few blocks away it was bright and sunny. The whole world was not covered in gloom, just a little section of it.
When I left for work later that morning, I drove from the fog back into the sun. Oh man, how I appreciated that light! It seemed somehow brighter than it had when I left my house the first time. It was the contrast between the two that made the difference. I no longer took the sunny day for granted. How refreshing and encouraging it was to see the sun again!
Taking it further, just like the weather was completely different from one block to the next, life can change radically when we take a few steps outside our current circumstances. When things in life seem dark or we move into a difficult time, its sometimes hard to imagine that the sun is shining anywhere.
Unfortunately, when things seem dark, its really hard to remember that the sun is just beyond the edge of the cloud. I forget the temporary nature of my circumstances. I often let the grey settle over me, holding me in place.
Heres what I learned that day: Get up, get out, and see what its like if you change your perspective.
One of my favorite songs about transitioning from dark to light is by Gloria Estefan. She recorded this after breaking her back in a tour bus accident and learning to walk again with titanium rods in her back.