These recent views from our house breathed hope into my soul. There’s something about the short, dark days of this season that brings out and amplifies the darkness, down feelings, depression, and despair within us. Know what I mean? Still, the way the light pierced the clouds to bring an extra “sparkle” to the mountains, on an otherwise dreary day, was a tangible reminder to me of how: From our darkest dark, our brightest bright is born.

In much the same way the light and new life of Spring only (and always) comes after the dark and death of Winter, deep hope, joy, and love come by going through our hurts, fears, and worries.

Lisa and I have a sore subject we’ve been circling around since we got married. Each time it comes up there are tears, fears, elevated emotions, and frustration. Can you relate? The question is: What’s the healthy and mutually beneficial way for a stepmom to relate to a teenage stepchild? The problem is, by circling around it, instead of going through it, we’ve kept this part of our “calendar” stuck in Winter.

On my birthday, though, after talking through things for several hours, I believe we had a breakthrough. We began to move through the dark and into the light. I can see deeper levels of hope, joy, and love beginning to fill our space. Not that there isn’t more to go through.

While going through our mess and muck is certainly scary, there are “lights” to guide our way. Savoring things we’re grateful for. Choosing to believe the best about ourselves/others/circumstances. Being here and now by focusing on our breath and the “next right thing”. Sharing what’s going on with beloved ones. Working out to sweat our issues out of our tissues. “Pruning” our thoughts to cultivate more love. Each will light the way.

Gratitude, believing the best, being here, sharing, moving our bodies, and cultivating love have a way of getting us out of our dark thoughts and into our bright, loving spirits!

Hugs & Love,


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