Light Changes Everything

Wednesday March 2, 2022

I recently discovered the videos of sand art created by Fatmir Mura. These wonderful images are made with just sand piled and scattered on a table. What makes this art comes to life is light; Mura uses a light box for his creations.

Light is just as essential to life as food and water. It was the first thing to be created, regardless of whether this is in Genesis, “Let there be light,” or the Big Bang. Without light, there is nothing.

As there is light during the “day” and darkness at “night,” we too experience times of emotional sunshine and times of darkness. For those of us who live with depression, there seems to be an unfair proportion of these dark times.

If you are like me and many others, when depression hits, we just want to hide away in that dark; we want to pull the covers over our head and hunker down in our cave, away from the sunlight.

Doing so, however, is the worst thing we can do: light is good therapy. For some it can be as effective as medication.

My younger daughter asked for a SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) lamp for Christmas. She has it on beside her as she does her homework, and finds it helps. I don’t have SAD as such, but I dislike waking to darkness. In my bedroom, I prefer light curtains or even no curtains at all; I like to wake in the light.

My husband and I went to the beach on Saturday. We walked the sands under the big sky; blue for the most part, while the sun stroked the water into gentle waves. Later, the clouds rolled in. We watched them, and, as we watched, the light caught one, creating a circular rainbow inside. It was a perfect moment and we watched, entranced, until it faded. Light created beauty in the shadow.

My mother-in-law is having it hard right now. At home she could sit in her bay window and look out over the garden she loved. In the care home, she looks out over the carpark. When we visit, we find her sitting in darkness, with her curtains firmly drawn. She will not allow us to open them. Several people have given her plants, thinking they will give her pleasure and provide interest, but she keeps them on the other side of the curtains. The plants have light, but she does not.

At present, we cannot provide her a room with a garden view, but I wish she would at least open the curtains and let in the light.

It’s worth looking at all the sources of light we can add to our own days, whether it is walking under the sky, buying a SAD lamp, turning on all the lights or just opening the curtains. It all makes a difference.

Oh, and for those who are interested, here’s the link to one of those sand art videos: https://bit.ly/3svCf7z

A Moodscope member.

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