My two year old daughter has recently become fascinated with light. She loves flashlights and the lights on our Christmas tree. She especially loves those little battery operated candles that you can switch on and off. The other morning she grabbed one of these candles and switched it on. When it didn't shine brightly she looked at me and said "this one isn't working". I explained to her that it was working if you look closely but that we can really see the light of the candles when it is dark.
As we approach the winter solstice, the shortest day of the year, we are enveloped in more darkness than usual. The earth reminds us of the need for dark, of shadow, waiting, and stillness.
While the earth is darker, we adorn our homes with light. Whether it is with lights on our Christmas tree, candles on the Hanukkah menorah, or the light of a fire we gather around. This season is full of dark and light.
And so it is with our souls and our hearts. Especially as mothers, we daily experience dark and light. There are the sleepless nights, the fears and the complete frustration. And then there is the purest joy, love and sweetness. We are made of shadow and light. Our lives are made of dark and light. They both hold lessons and gifts for us and our children.
How can we lean into darkness and see its hidden gifts? How can we approach the shadows without fear, knowing they also reveal the light? This season offers us an invitation into this mystery.