Djoi's Life Lessons: When darkness is comforting

in #ocdlast year


When I was a little girl, below the age of ten, we lived in a bungalow, having a front and a back yard. We had two mango trees at the back yard, and that meant that we got cool breeze most nights. This cool breeze was one of the reasons my parents, uncle, the housemaid, my siblings and I often sat at the backyard. This was usually during that space of time between dinner and bedtime, and we sat there talking about many things. Of course, the adults talked, and the children played.


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Many of these nights, there is no power, so a lit lantern is brought out to give the little light it could provide. Since the lamp was outside, it meant the house was dark.

As it still happens till today, I sooner or later got tired of the droning of the adults’ conversation and play of my brothers and sisters. I’d sneak back into the house and lay on the couch for a blissful time of solitude. Sometimes I’d be asleep before they came back in. There were times when they’d look for me outside only to find me inside, daydreaming, on the verge of sleep or already sleeping.

This habit of going into the dark house disturbed my father.

One day, he asked me why I preferred going into the dark house to staying outside with them. I remember telling him, quite boldly (you’d understand why I considered it a bold act if you knew how much we feared my dad), that the light from the lantern didn’t wholly vanquish the darkness outside. So, instead of straining my eyes to create a visual balance between the little light given and the looming darkness, I preferred the complete darkness where I didn’t have to strain my eyes but could get used to the surrounding darkness.


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Of course, I didn’t say it in those exact words, but I explained that instead of the little light which seemed to do nothing much, I’d instead go into the dark at least I knew that was all there was to it.

I doubt that I would ever forget what he said to me in response. That is the life lesson for today.

He said, “A little light in the darkness is always better than total darkness.”

I am over twice the age I was when my father died, and he said those words to me a long time before he died, yet I still remember that truth.

In life, there are times when we are so comfortable with the darkness surrounding us. This darkness could be in different forms from toxicity, mediocrity, abuse, hate, pain, to illness. That’s the thing about darkness (and light, thankfully), it can take many forms.

In times when we experience the different forms of darkness, there’s is this temptation to just embrace the familiar, comforting darkness. We feel comfortable. We convince ourselves that there is no need to fight for just a little light. We remind ourselves of the uncertainty a little unfamiliar light could bring. We ask ourselves of what use a little ray will be in a mind full of gloom. We can’t grasp how a feeble little effort would make any difference in the conceived world of drear.

Here’s a thing, darkness is darkness. It may be comfortable or comforting, or maybe your eyes are used to the dark, and you can figure your way around things, but it is still dark. Your eyes were made for light. There is a reason why there are night and day. You were not made to live in the dark. It’s time to move towards the light. Yes, it will be a journey, but you have to start the movement out of darkness into light.

Here’s another thing, no matter how pressing or overwhelming the dark might be, a little shining, maybe flickering, light is a good thing. It may be small, but the darkness cannot put it out. Light has never been put out by darkness. Usually, something else snuffs it out and helps the dark win.

So, fight for that little light.

Fight for that antitoxin.

Fight for that excellence.

Fight to stop the abuse.

Fight for love.

Fight for relief.

Fight for healing.

Fight for light because a little light amid darkness is always better than a state of utter darkness.

If you are ever in a place where you can shine, do so. No matter how thick the darkness, it cannot hide the light, because light will always, always pierce the darkness.

Here’s the last thing, when darkness gets comfortable or comforting, remember it is still darkness. Find the light, be the light, discover the light, focus on the light and watch it get magnified.


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Whatever you do, when darkness gets comforting, get out of that zone and pierce that darkness with some light.