The other day, we had quite a late afternoon storm roll into Stormville. Now, storms, for those of us who live in Stormville, are not all that unusual and we who live in this aptly named burg are prone to snow, ice and rain storms that are memorable and infamous. There was a duzy last winter that caused hundreds of people to be trapped in their cars overnight awaiting "rescue" on the interstate that divides our mountain in the middle of the Hudson Valley!
Anyway, after the pouring rain and 30 minutes of relentless hail began to pull away from our mountain ridge, we were left with one of the most powerful sunsets of the season. Half of the sky was consumed by an intense, thick dark cloud that totally obscured the sun from view while the other half of the sky promised that the future would be brighter. I put aside my grad student paper reading initially becuase the papers were getting wet on the porch during the storm; however, I put them away a little longer as I marveled at the magestic beauty and promise of that sunshine.
I have looked at the little image from my Droid phone several times in the past few days and marvel at how that little image captured from my porch chair really does sum up my summer and all of our lives. There are storms - lots of them -that roll in even if you do not live in Stormville! Some come slowly and we stress over their inevitable arrival while others roll in without warning and without our preparation. Sometimes the storms cause intense pain and sometimes our view is obscured for quite a while. Sometimes, we can barely breathe as the intense storm consumes us; yet, the OTHER side of the storm offers us the promise of a future that is brighter.
All this made me think of my grad students whose lives I have made stressful and busy during these last crazy days of the summer semester. I am SURE they gave up a few nights of sumemr fun to complete their coursework and case studies for ME! I am also sure that MANY of my students will face stressful days and sleepless nights as they prepare mentally and physically for their "first days" in new classrooms and for their "first classes" of the new school year. Like the storms that roll through my valley, each of them will watch as MANY small and some large storms pass through each of their lives during the days and weeks ahead.
I hope that each of my students is able to see around through inevitable clouds and "dark times" towards the sunshine and promsie of the good days because even though it may SEEM that OTHERS have "golden lives" free of storms and stressors, we all have many small and large storms and stressors that obscure our view of the sunshine.