The night sky has always amazed me. The stars seem so friendly, but are really balls of fire that are so far away that the light that I gaze at has gone on a journey that may have taken millions of years. Meteors fall through the sky, leaving a trail of “space dust” behind. I ooh and aah at something that I can only appreciate for its beauty, and something more that is hard to put a finger on.
My appreciation for starry nights grew one evening when my dad and I had just finished a long day of backpacking. We were sitting by the edge of a lake, watching a meteor shower. It was serene, but unfortunately I wasn’t actually seeing many shooting stars. I decided to challenge the night skies, God (or whatever) “If you are up there, show me a gorgeous shooting star.” Soon my dad said that he wanted to head up to camp, and reluctantly I got up to leave. Then the largest meteor I have ever seen flew though the sky. My dad didn’t see it. Ever since then, when I look up at the heavens, I feel confident that someone or something is watching over me.
I believe in the power of stargazing. As well as making me feel connected to God, I use the night sky as a metaphor for life. Life is so full of small bright spots and beautiful surprises, even in the darkest of times. The stars always startle me: I can’t begin to understand what they are, but I know that they are the reason that I am here today. Stars show me the grace of life. I should really enjoy being alive because in the vast universe, we have not yet found nothing like our little planet so full of life. When I look up at night, I can truly feel my own smallness and insignificance. Sometimes this makes me feel melancholy because I see that I don’t really matter to the universe. I am simply one organism living on our tiny planet. At the same time I realize that since there is so much beyond me, maybe it would be better to just relax. When the days are hard I remember the stars and I feel less alone and more hopeful. Each day, the sun rises and I don’t always feel ready, I wish for shooting stars and sweet dreams. But I know that our sun is a star too, so each day will be okay.