February 2, 2018 Gratitude ... Here is the place that I get to live. In this moment, as I sat in my car at the beach, I contemplated my own inner light and dark aspects. As if the sky saw me, heard me, and acknowledged me, the gray clouds rapidly rolled in on the right side of the sunny landscape. This moved the two contrasting images of light and darkness from my head to directly in front of me. As I watched the darkness intrude, I wanted it to stop. I began to feel the misery I had been attempting to hold down. It restlessly attacked me and momentarily I fought back with clenched teeth and frustration. I then realized, the clouds were ok to be there, as themselves, just like I was ok to be there, as myself. This allowed me to face some dark truths that I don’t want anyone to know. What I don’t want you to know about me is: sometimes parts of me are afraid, sometimes parts of me are insecure, sometimes parts of me feel unlovable, and sometimes parts of me feel that the darkness can consume me. To make the darkness conscious, is to turn the shadow into light and there can’t be light without the darkness . As I opened myself up, I began to open up to the world around me. Through my car window, I shifted my view from the sky and observed a man in his 30s sitting at the edge of the cliff holding his head in his hands. I didn’t notice him before, and I wondered how long he had been there. I felt his sadness, but also his joy. As he stood up, an older man, which appeared to be his father, walked from a vehicle and embraced him in a hug. Tears slipped from both of their faces, as well as my own. Then a young girl about four years old, ran right beside the two men into the sunlight. Here her dad snapped photos of her joyful play as the wind blew her hair in her face. To the left of the little girl, two 16 year old girls jumped in the air as their other friend tried to take an in the air captured photo, and a bit further down the beach, a lady watched the birds fly with curiosity as they swarmed frantically in front of her. I smiled in my connection to all things and embraced the light and darkness.