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  • Writer's pictureQualia

Smiling in dark times


It's weird to have people come out and criticize me for posting about happy things when there is so much darkness in the world, as if we should feel horrible for any moments of joy when others are suffering.


There has always been, and will always be a lot of human suffering in our damaged and flawed civilization. I'm not saying the particular things that are happening at the moment are not horrific. They are, and any human suffering is despicable. When the powerful and the elite use their power to destroy others, persecute, attack, and demean others, it is never okay. I stand with my belief in the fundamental goodness of life on Earth, and the belief that there is zero justification for hatred and violence.


I am on a mental health journey that has brought me close to the edge more than once. I choose to focus my very small internet presence on art and literature and mostly on my writing. I want to find ways to smile, and make you smile too. Spreading light in dark times is always one of the best methods of activism. I need to find daily ways to choose joy in my heart because the alternative is to allow the tidal wave of darkness to overcome me.


It's okay to allow yourself to be happy. There is a beautiful research study that was conducted on people that were actively dying, mostly in palliative or hospice care, where participants were asked what their top five regrets were.


One that always sticks out to me was "I wish I'd let myself be happier."

at 41, I can honestly tell you, that there will always be a giant list of things to be unhappy about, and I know there are plenty of times I let those things consume me, when I wish, looking back that I'd let myself be happier.


This picture that you see in this post is from last year, when I got the chance to do my first ever gender-affirming photoshoot. I felt so nervous, and afraid for my safety to leave my house femme presenting to go to this shoot. I was lucky to have my wonderful and supportive partner at my side but was also a bit nervous for her to be there. She kept telling me I looked beautiful and she loved me and it made the entire experience more amazing because I felt her love and support which made me feel braver.


In the dark times, I often think of my partner and her light, and the light of our bond helps me lift myself out of the dark, or at least gives me strength to survive it until the darkness decreases enough for me to overcome it. Although I've struggled for some time, I am also continuing to learn more about myself and how I live in this world, so that I know how to be kind to myself to help me survive the dark.

Find your lights, learn how to become your light, learn how to bring in more light, from as many sources as you can find and be that source for others as you're able to.


Thanks for reading.

Qualia

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