Even though the “official” start of summer is not until June 21(when we celebrate the summer solstice), it’s pretty hard to deny that summer...

Even though the “official” start of summer is not until June 21(when we celebrate the summer solstice), it’s pretty hard to deny that summer is in the air after Memorial Day weekend. The swimming pools open, baseball is being played every weekend, the temperatures climb higher and higher, and of course, the lightning bugs have arrived.

Every evening, just about dusk, I love to stand outside and look to the west. The sun is streaking the sky with brilliant pinks, oranges, and purples. The trees appear as silhouettes against this glorious display of color, and in the darkest depths you see the twinkling of the lightning bugs. It brings joy to my heart to witness this on a nightly basis, and it makes the sweet days of summer appear closer than ever. Some nights after I put my children to bed, I like to go outside and soak in the magical beauty of the late setting sun and the sparkling of the lightning bugs. I even have taken a Mason jar out there to see if I can catch some. I never do; my eyes aren’t as good as they once were.

The gentle breeze, the smell of honeysuckle, the soft, humid air: it’s enough to make you want to cry from the sweetness of it all. While the world is in turmoil and we are angry, perplexed, hurt, and frightened, I take great comfort in the beauty and steadfastness of nature. During these tumultuous times, we must take our comfort where we can find it. I have an internal argument about whether I am actually just seeking comfort or actively trying to ignore all of the turmoil. Ignoring it is quite easy to do; I am not on social media, I can turn my channel to HGTV and watch “Beachfront Bargain Hunt” until my eyes glaze over, and I can insulate myself in my suburban bubble. I find myself doing this and having to shake myself into paying attention.

There is so much at stake right now that my husband and I have commented that we feel like we are living in the beginning of an apocalyptic movie. Right now we are at the part of the movie where the audience can see the disaster about to happen, but the people in the movie are blissfully unaware of the terror about to strike. It’s a very intense time for people of the United States, no matter which side you are on. Big changes are coming, and in my opinion they are not for the better.

So, this is where I will repeat that we need to take comfort where we can find it. If you are feeling overwhelmed by the hatefulness spilling out of every crevice, the fearmongering to detract your attention from what is really going on, the fighting, the arguing, and the division of the country, just go outside tonight. Thank Mother Earth for her beauty, stand in the dark and watch the lightning bugs dance their magical dance, and take comfort that in this very moment, things are okay, at least for now.