I Believe in Power Outages

Mary - Newport News, Virginia
Entered on April 28, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: change, nature

I believe in power outages. Living on the coast, we frequently experience hurricanes and, along with them, power outages. I remember several hurricanes that knocked out our power for weeks at a time. Without air conditioning, our house felt like a vegetable steamer and without lights, the entire city sank into the blackness of the night. Living without our normal amenities always seemed like such a hardship that we were forced to endure. However, taking a single step outdoors during those dark, powerless nights could remove the complaints straight from our mouths.

With all the power in the surrounding area out, the pitch-black nights only allowed the stars to shine brighter than ever before. We could stand outside for hours just gazing at the night sky; an onlooker might think that it was a novel thing for us and in a way, it was. Constellations that were never before visible suddenly filled the empty holes in the sky and captured our attention like a baby with a toy.

Too often in life, we get caught up in the bad things that happen and we overlook the little joys that are sometimes hidden under the rocks. Being required to take a boring class may seem like a nuisance, but the person next to you may end up being your best friend. Ending a relationship may seem like the end of the world, but it can allow you time to find yourself and experience new sensations. A hurricane brings strong winds, piercing rains, and weeks of destruction yet, it also brings out the shining stars and a sense of camaraderie between neighbors as they rebuild their community together.

There are no chance happenings in life. Two events don’t just coincidentally occur at exactly the same moment in time. Hurricanes and the stars appearing are not two separate events, much like it cannot be argued that jumping off of a cliff and immediately breaking your leg aren’t related. The goodness that appears after one of life’s storms becomes the sweetness that allows life to continue on afterwards. It’s like finding a twenty dollar bill in your coat after having a horrible day, or seeing the lights glowing from heaven to outshine the blackness created by a storm.