Significant Quotes in Susan’s Life

Susan passed away very recently, and has left a large hole in my life. As I have been sorting through some of her own writings and collected quotations, I became fully aware of the fact that each quote was significant in her life. Susan “hid” them in books she was reading, in notebooks, in her Bible, and attached to corners of framed pictures. Short quotes were important to her. I have chosen a few which give a great picture of Susan.

“If you enter this world knowing you are loved and you leave this world knowing the same, then everything that happens in between can be dealt with.”  –Michael Jackson
I miss Susan. We travelled 60 years together and now I have to travel this unknown road without her by my side. After 60 years of checking signals with each other, I find it difficult to accept the broken connection. Let me share those connections from our life together.
Susan and I grew up in similar households, and in fact, both are the last of twelve siblings. Susan was born and raised in Yarrow,BC where her parents were pioneers.  I was born in southern Manitoba where my family lived until I was six. Then we moved to Chilliwack, BC, next door to Yarrow. While Susan’s family stayed put, mined moved several times during my growing up years. This last move was to Clearbrook (now Abbotsford), BC. It was while living here that I met Susan.
Although we both attended the Mennonite Educational Institute for Grade 13 (traditionally the first year of university), we did not connect until we went to M.B.Bible Institute (now Columbia Bible College). Here we both were elected to the student council. Susan enjoyed working in the library and I enjoyed editing the school paper. . Rules were such that no dating or special relationships were allowed during the school year..Of course, we soon realized that “committee” meetings were important meeting times We tried so hard to obey the strict rules, but found various ways to maneuver around the rules. We even kissed before our graduation ceremony—again a no, no!
After graduation we saw each other much more frequently. I worked for a bricklayer in the Abbotsford area while Susan worked for BC Hydro in Vancouver. This meant numerous trips to Vancouver and back. This is when I learned that Susan had a determined streak. I loved coffee even back then, but I drank it with lots of cream or milk. Because neither she nor her housemate used any cream, she did not have any in the house. She let me know that if I needed cream, I could bring it myself or drink the coffee black!
A favourite spot for us was English Bay, Vancouver. We would find some large rocks, and spend the evening hours chatting. Often we discussed the current issues, seeking rationalizations that made sense to both of us. Susan enjoyed these challenging discussions as we worked out our philosophies. Never did Susan hesitate or back off if she felt strongly about an issue. I think this helped develop her feminist viewpoint.
This determination showed itself throughout our married life.When we hesitated about returning to college after marriage, Susan pushed us to go, because we needed to finish our degrees. What jobs would be available without a completed education?
That determination revealed itself in many ways. Whether in forging her own career, or taking on volunteer positions such as Sunday school superintendent at a time when this was not a position that women should aspire to; or becoming an elected village counselor when that too was not something women did.
 “Speak little; do much. Well done is better than well said.”    –Benjamin Franklin
“Work for a cause, not for applause. Live life to express and not to impress. Don’t strive to make your presence noticed, just make your absence felt.” — Author Unknown
Her quiet demeanor often made others think she was weak or a pushover. This was far from reality. Susan did not speak volumes but she acted volumes. When a barrier stood in the way, she rarely mentioned it, but worked extra hard to remove the barrier. Susan’s years at the M.B. Conference offices illustrate this. There were very few jobs she did not do, from typing letters, to suggesting pastoral connections, to editing books, to editing the M.B. Herald. Whatever task was before her, she tackled it with determination.
At River East Church, Susan often sat quietly in the pews, but when CareLinks needed a person to organize meals for special needs, or to plan the lunch for funerals, etc., she was called upon to make sure all worked out well. No fanfare, just quiet accomplishment.
Susan was not a member of the Good Neighbours Choristers, but when someone was needed to host the snack time after the choir performances, she stepped in to make sure everything ran smoothly. She worked hard to welcome the choir and the concert attendees. Rarely did she mix with the people enjoying the desserts. She was too busy serving.
When Susan noticed that some task was not getting done, she made every effort to fill that gap. Often that “filling of the gap” went unnoticed, except that many recognized that something had changed. Someone must have filled that gap. So often that person was Susan. She will be missed; since her passing, many have commented that Susan was a quiet force, but a force that helped others grow and gain recognition, while she stayed in the background, knowing that the small part she thought she had, actually made a huge difference. Who now will fill the gap? Who now will quietly push others to the front? Yes, Susan’s absence will be felt by me, by her children and grandchildren, but also by many around the world who were touched by her unexpected presence.
“People who provide the spark don’t often get to sit by the fire.” –Madam Secretary  Nov 16, 2018 show
Throughout our lives, I became more and more aware that Susan frequently provided the spark needed to make things happen. For example, she and her siblings enjoyed each other very much. However, if Susan did not get the plans in motion, little happened.
Family was so important. Susan provided the spark to bring about family reunions. Then once her siblings had died, she worked hard to bring her nephews and nieces together. After traveling to the Fraser Valley, Susan connected with several nieces and nephews, suggesting a family picnic. That was really all the spark required. A Sunday afternoon, with about 30 people gathered, was a wonderful reunion time.
Susan also provided the spark for get-togethers with the Manitoba Brandts. Breakfasts at Smittys at the Forks, picnics in the park, backyard BBQs were a legacy of hers. I could continue, but I think you get the point. She really was the spark, even though she might be hidden in the kitchen or serving food to all the rest.
 “Every day may not be good, but there’s something good in every day.”  — Author Unknown
“Be a good listener. Your ears will never get you in trouble.” — Frank Tyger
 These two quotes were lived out by Susan throughout her life. Sometimes life was tough, sometimes very frustrating, but, at the end of the day, Susan would mention some aspect of the day that made everything worthwhile and often brought a smile to our faces..
For many years we made sure that our bedroom door was open for our kids  to come and chat. We might have been dozing, but when one of our children came home we heard that gentle knock and question, “are you asleep?” Some of our best conversations happened late at night, when one or other of our children was ready to chat. Mostly we listened, asking a few key questions now and then. I soon discovered that Susan listened carefully and understood the situation much better than I did.
“I will believe nothing that detracts from the love and goodness of God”  –Paul Hiebert
Although this quote was obtained many years ago, I realized that Susan believed this more and more as the years went by. Frequently, as heavy theological questions would arise, Susan would listen carefully and then declare that all that really counts is the love of God. If there is love, nothing else matters. Susan repeated this many times, especially in the last several years. She could not understand the arguing about issues that really did not affect eternity. For instance, as groups and churches argued about the Queer Community, Susan would get frustrated and state, “Why can we not just all demonstrate God’s love?” For her God’s love was the key.
As Susan faced the end of life and struggled in St. Boniface Hospital, her voice had been reduced to a whisper. But, even then, as she listened to assorted conversations or thought about the future, she would whisper, “I love you, all that matters is God’s love.” She was at peace because she knew that God’s love was enough.

Susan, My Beloved

I usually do not  publish such personal words as the following, but when one loses a much loved spouse, the usual no longer applies. I want to use this post to honor the memory of my spouse, Susan. The words below were written for the Memorial Service, held May 26, 2022. I hope they inspire you the way they touched me as I thought and wrote. 
For nearly 60 years we have travelled this road together

And what a ride it has been

We have been through thick and thin

As we counted pennies to buy a quart of milk

But God was always there to light a pathway through the dark.

And wondered how we’d make it through our years of study

For nearly 60 years we have slept together, talked together

And learned together what marriage meant

We were young, in college, but deeply in love

We married, deeply committed to accept the future

Filled with promises and hope

A time of learning and sharing as we walked this road together

For nearly 60 years we have listened to each other

And sought to make the other better than before.

We struggled at times and brushed each other off

But always we came back to the fact

That we travel better together than apart

Thank you Jo, for your openness in letting the light shine through

For nearly 60 years we have encouraged each other

Whether in studies or work that led us far afield

We learned together to make new friends in new places

Always determined to remember those we left behind

What an adventure as we traveled many roads

Across North America from coast to coast

For nearly 60 years we have enjoyed each other

Whether playing games, watching TV or working together

Or travelling locally or internationally

And making love because we care for each other so very much

Your joyous laugh or gentle smile touches my heart each time

Life with you has been filled with exciting joy

For nearly 60 years we have travelled this road together

How will I travel alone because the past with you has been such a glorious ride

The many trips to Half Moon Drive-in, with rides through Birds Hill Park

The longer rides to Gimli and sometimes Seven Sisters Falls

The two of us alone, or, with friends or family to escape the city’s crush

What a joyous ride each time we travelled down the same or different road together

For nearly 60 years we have sought to serve in many sundry ways

Someone has said that life is a game of boomerangs

Our thoughts, deeds, and words return to us sooner or later with astounding accuracy

This I am noting now as friends from far and wide remember your words and deeds

The life you lived has touched so many all around the world

Who now with thankfulness remember your caring kindness and your love

For nearly 60 years the road ahead, whether smooth or pot-hole filled

Has kept us bound together in joyous caring love

But now this trip has ended for the one of us

Susan, your trip on earth is done

You are released from all that binds us here

And now I must travel a new road which neither one of us has known.

I’m Old Enough to Dream


In the Bible, the prophet Joel records God’s comments (see Joel 2:28-32) as God declares,

I will pour out my Spirit upon all people.

Your sons and daughters will prophesy.

Your old men will dream dreams,

And your young men will see visions.

In those days I will pour out my Spirit

Even on servants—men and women alike

.And I will cause wonders in the heavens and on the earth

Did you pay attention? God declares, among other things, that “Your old men will dream dreams” I think being 81 years of age qualifies me as an old man, and therefore I should be given the freedom to dream. Thankfully, mind is such that I still am able to dream. Yes, I have a dream—in fact many dreams. Where do I begin?

I dream that each of us will demonstrate love for one another

I dream that peace and helpfulness will rule the day

I dream that we will listen, really listen, to each other in order to encourage each other

I dream that we will sacrifice our perceived freedoms in order to save those suffering illness

I dream that our political leaders will speak and live honestly and openly to make our world a better place

I dream that our politicians will show compassion and caring for individuals, not work on political ambitions

I dream that our medics will be supported and praised for all the help they give

I dream that we will pray daily for those ‘front-line’ workers who bravely share their lives to make things better

I dream that those who insist on their own freedoms will not inhibit others from their freedom

I dream that each one of us will respect all others and work to bring peace and joy into our midst

I dream that the pandemic will be conquered because we all obeyed the health restrictions

I dream that these restrictions will push us together, not pull us apart

I dream that God’s love will electrify each one of us so we will spread the love around

I dream that despite my age, or maybe because of my age, I will be respected for the wisdom of age.

I dream that I and other of my age will be given opportunities to walk alongside those of younger generations

I dream that my generation will allow the younger ones to prophecy and see visions

I dream that the people of this world will work hard to leave our world a better place for all generations

I dream….

I may be old, but God has promised that the old will dream!

What a wonderful gift from God, the possibility of dreaming.

Am I too optimistic; will my dreams be crushed or will they come to wonderful fruition?

Or am I too old to see the dreams come true?

May God give continued strength in order that these dreams will lift us all to higher unity and love.


After struggling through several years of the pandemic I believe most of us are weary and burned out. We wonder when normal activities will again happen. Most of us have tried to follow all the health directives, even though we wondered about the rationale for some of these. The following provides some thoughts from my perspective. When will our leaders realize that people need compassion and caring, and not just be part of a “system that is broken”?

The pandemic is raging and the variant Omicron is taking control…but our Premier says we’re on our own

Loved ones are dying and no one may visit…but government officials insist it’s best for the system

The pandemic is raging through our ranks…but we are worried, not about people, but the healthcare system

People everywhere are getting sick…but we are more concerned to keep our health system strong

The Covid variants are attacking at will…but we must work hard to keep our system strong

 Individuals are touched by Covid all around…but we are pushing economic growth

The medical personnel are running off their feet…but we say no to adding funds to hire more

Doctors and nurses are pleading for more help…but we are working on adding to our hospitals

The doctors ask for shutdown time to help people gain an upper hand…but the business owners would object

The medics call for more vaccines and Covid tests…but what if folks are anti-vax and will not do as asked

The ICUs are getting filled, mostly with the unvaxed who now demand a medic’s help…but we know they have their rights

Our schools are on then off, then on again, too often without Covid tests…but we have teachers, oft on-line, who help all students learn

Our government likes to show concern…but how does that translate into actual care for all the ill

Doctor visits and needed operations all on hold…but we must do all to keep the system safe

Quality of life is almost non-existent as they wait for a medic’s help…but we are busy with the Omicron to keep our healthcare from a crash                     

The Omicron variant is running wild…but we are scheming how to win the vote                  

We elect a government that claims its doing all it can…but clearly says, “Up to Manitobans to look after themselves”

Most of us follow all the rules and pray that we’ll stay safe…but letting Covid run its course is maybe all that we can do

People are dying…but the leaders worry more about the next election run

We are living with concern and fear and wonder when this all will end…but maybe Covid will slowly disappear

For several years now we have put our lives on hold in order to stay safe…but we must be careful and not offend because we need the votes

Exuberance at Christmas

My reflections during the Christmas Season

If the following is not your experience, please forgive my exuberance and joy that I have experienced during this 2021 Christmas season. In many ways I feel like Scrooge after he discovered that he had not missed Christmas day. Oh what joy!

What brings me joy? What, besides the reflection on Christ’s birth, could bring such exuberance? Let me explain.

We are so fortunate to have three wonderful children and their spouses; and six delightful grandchildren, plus one with a loving partner.  How could we be so fortunate? Thanks, family, for your love and loving care.

Because we are still facing the limitations of COVID-19, we need to be careful about wearing masks, staying our distance, and getting all the suggested vaccines and boosters. We get regular, basically daily, calls from our kids to make sure we are ok. So great to have someone check on us. Again, what a wonderful situation to be in.

All our married life, we have hosted Christmas dinners. For years, we served snacks on Christmas Eve, a great brunch Christmas morning, and then dinner, including a turkey and all the trimmings. The family assumed that the Christmas festivities would happen at “Mom and Dad’s” home. We loved having everyone together. What a privilege. As the children married, then had their own children, we just added another place setting and/or bought more snacks.

So what makes this Christmas unique? First, this year we were able to meet as a family. COVID-19 cancelled our get-togethers last year. This Christmas would be a celebration.

However, our own health issues made us debate what we could all handle. Our children knew what to do. Christmas Eve, instead of children and grandchildren settling in at our place, we went to our daughter and son-in-law’s  place and joined that family. Everything was ready—food, drink and our usual Christmas movie.

Christmas morning, our children now enjoy having some time to themselves, for opening gifts, for general relaxation. We do as well. This year we invited a friend whose husband was in hospital with broken bones and bruises. A joy to share our brunch.

Christmas dinner was prepared by our son and daughter-in-law. All that they requested was that Susan make the gravy—always a request from our son. During the meal, Susan was asked if she missed making dinner. Her response was, “Yes, but I know it is just too much for us” She continued, “We have all of you to make Christmas special.”

Instead of busily preparing dinner, Susan and I could visit with family members, enjoy the dinner, and then give all the prep and cleanup to others. Thank you, kids.

Gift-sharing was also part of the activities at our children’s home. Besides the giving of gifts to each other, we have a book exchange activity which is organized by our son and daughter-in-law in Toronto. We were all on ZOOM while each of us opened our book gifts. What a joyous blessing to be able to connect in this way.

Our children and grandchildren treat us royally. We are so fortunate. They know we are getting on in years, and that sometimes, even making meals is a chore. They wonder how they can help. Therefore, what do they do? We get meals brought over on occasion. Now, as a special Christmas gift, several families and grandchildren got together and purchased a host of restaurant gift cards. The comment was made, “This may give you some relief. Use these to enjoy a dinner out.” What a fabulous gift.

 Suddenly our children have become the care-givers. And, what wonderful givers they are! We are so thankful for our children and their spouses. Their care-giving means a lot to us, but also means that we need to be care-receivers with grace!  Our children’s care includes daily calls just to check how we are doing; asking if we need any groceries; making sure we watch our “social distancing”.  We realize these are special circumstances, but we realize all the more that this caring, maybe more evident now, demonstrates so clearly the care-givers that they are. For this we are so very grateful. Our joy and exuberance overflows!

Again, let me repeat. We are so fortunate. I exuberantly, virtually hug each of our family members. You make the changes to our lives less formidable and devastating. Life is good because you make it so.

 Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Christmas is a wonderful time of year; and family togetherness makes for joyous celebrations.

Life during the Great Depression!

I grew up in a large family, a family that needed to work at many jobs in order to meet the needs for survival. Although born after the Great Depression, I experienced the after effects while growing up. My dad was a teacher—a job he loved, especially the teaching of music. However, as my older siblings attest, my dad frequently was denied wages. The school board (basically local farmers) received very little in the way of “tax” dollars. The priority was to keep the school operating—lights, heat, etc. The teacher received whatever may be left over, and often this was zero. My parents talked about receiving vegetables and meat (an occasional chicken) as payment. At some point, my father was so desperate that he went to the municipal office and begged for food—anything to keep his family from starving. Thankfully, not too long after that food shipments came to the prairies. My brother says a 45-gallon drum of foodstuffs came for each family in the small community. For a while, our family had sufficient.

The provincial government (Saskatchewan) was determined to keep its teachers, but realized that money was awfully tight for everyone. Subsidies were provided for all unemployed (not sure if from the province or the federal government), but my dad, according to the records, was not unemployed. Therefore he did not qualify for a subsidy. What a plight to be in! Listed as “employed” but receiving no wage. How long can one survive?

The family learned to work at whatever jobs were available. My parents were resourceful and willing to work at any tasks around. Dad helped many a farmer with seeding, harvesting, or other chores, just to receive some vegetables and/or meat products. Mother then used her magic in the kitchen to make nourishing meals for all.

I am so thankful that my parents survived this Depression on the Canadian prairies. I was born during WWII, a time when the economy was improving. My dad was still teaching—now in southern Manitoba—and now was able to draw a regular salary. The farmers in the area had bumper crops. My dad and older siblings were at various farm jobs during the summers and were able to build up cash reserves.

Recently I have become more and more aware of the tremendous suffering that many endured while living on the Canadian prairies. Life was most difficult, yet many struggled to gain the upper hand. My parents were part of that scene. Human life was lost because of the challenges of the Great Depression, yet many survived and became stronger through this suffering.

Sometimes I wonder whether the government (provincial and/or federal) really recognized the suffering endured by so many citizens. What could the government have done?

My parents, even with numerous moves in Manitoba and Saskatchewan and finally to British Columbia, were able to keep some diaries and other significant documents. One such document intrigues me very much. It is a “Promissory Note” from the Saskatchewan government declaring that the wages my dad never received, would be paid, with interest, when the economy improved. I asked one of my siblings about this. He stated that our dad had tried to redeem the note, but was refused payment by the government. Just curious—how much would several years’ salaries, plus interest, be worth today?

Over the Hill?

Recently a niece of mine celebrated a birthday. As part of the recognition someone posted a picture of her walking down some stairs. This elicited a variety of comments, such as “I hope going down the steps is not symbolic, as in ‘it’s all downhill.…”

Our society carries the visual image declaring that once a person “gets to the top of the hill, everything goes down from there, usually with dire consequences.” Why do we assume that all the effort and determination is really for naught once a person reaches the top, or attains a certain age? We expend so much energy pushing ourselves to “get there”, and then?  We drag our feet and dig in our heels. We push the brakes down as hard as possible—to fight that downhill trend. Many think that reaching that top marker means the end. Nothing could be further from the truth!

I agree that, yes, after a certain point, everything may be moving downhill, but what an exhilarating ride! Think of skiers reaching the top, ready to fly down. This is what they wait for, that spine-tingling glide. Or a tobogganer enjoying a heart-stopping ride around curves and corners before reaching the straightaway for that final run.

Downhill—think of the possibilities! Downhill life can be filled with adventures and joy-filled experiences. It really depends on one’s perspective. Life is too precious to keep putting on the brakes. Life can be exciting, exhilarating and enlivening! Realizing and enjoying this is so much better than going downhill, kicking and screaming in attempts to “stay at the top.” But, what a ride it can be, even if its downhill all the way. The type of ride depends on each individual’s choices. Make it as exciting as possible; not limiting and exhausting!

A Challenge from Fruit

The apple tree uses its energy to produce fruit—wonderful apples which we eat, as fresh fruit, as pie or other delectable desserts. Just outside our 4rth floor balcony are several apple trees. Most years they are loaded with apples. After everyone in our building has taken as many apples as they wish, the rest are left on the ground. What the animals (squirrels, raccoons, crows, etc.) do not get, the rest are left to rot. Or, in more pleasant terms, the apples are returned to the earth as compost which enriches the soil.

We so enjoy the various fruits around us. Depending on where one lives, the fruits can be so diverse. Cherries, peaches, apricots, blueberries, pears, apples—and many others—make our diets so much more palatable. What a joy to sink one’s teeth into a tree-grown fresh peach!

What happens to the fruit that is considered imperfect—scarred, too soft, wrong size, poor colour, or mottled—and therefore could be considered unwanted fruit? Does the wrong size affect the sweetness; or a poor colour change the taste? Has our judgment become clouded when the fruit does not meet our “standards” as decided by the consumer? Have we determined that the diversity of fruits does not include “sub-standard” features as mentioned above?

Grocery stores occasionally feature “fruit, as is” indicating that the products may be perfectly acceptable for eating, but may not be pleasing to the eye. Does this mean that the fruit needs to be tossed, just because of some imperfections? Certainly not! Diversity allows for many shapes, sizes and colours.

I will leave any applications to you, the readers. I will ask, however, do we look at people in similar ways as looking at fruit? What does diversity mean?

Darkness—An Interesting Puzzle, Part 2

I always appreciate any and all comments about my blogs. This means that some of you are reading them—thanks!

My recent blog about Darkness and Light brought a number of interesting notes and additions. Some were sent to me privately, some were added as comments in the actual blog page. I gained a number of new thoughts which I want to share with you. I will quote a number of the commentators, although I have chosen to keep their names secret. Thanks for understanding.

One person responded, “Interesting and also puzzling. I read Genesis 1 again and amazingly (as I read it) God created darkness as well as light. And the statement … and it is good … would also apply to darkness. We need darkness for most effective recuperation and rejuvenation.

There are many good things that happen in the darkness. But then we confront evil, which often happens “in the dark”. But it also happens “in the light”, whether it is exposed or not. And that is when I realized that the dark has become a metaphor, the playground of evil. But the Creator made it and it is good. The conundrum is still there.

Another reader declared,“ Interesting thoughts, Gilbert. The parallels between the birth of a child and the Genesis account of the birth of our world are striking, offering virtually hours of reflection.”

One person took the comments some steps further and brought home some practical applications, “Light and darkness has interested me a great deal too. I read a book recently, entitled Them Before Us, by Katy Faust, which argues for children’s rights. It’s a book that takes the tack that because children can’t speak for themselves, adults must but often don’t. This is why, she argues, they are often hurt by the choices and actions of adults. The book is a vigorous argument for the role biological parents play in the lives of their children. Here too light and darkness are at play.

I hope the interaction has sparked further thoughts. I want to conclude with the comments from another reader who states, “Thanks for your reflection. We would certainly not appreciate moments in the light if we have not known darkness”

Darkness—An interesting puzzle for me—and for you?

As you will note from previous blogs, I have become fascinated with the comparisons between light and darkness—both find their way into our lives. Generally most writings speak to the glorification of light, at the expense of darkness. What does it mean to “live in the darkness” or to “live in the light?” Much of our literature references light in a positive “light” and darkness in a negative tone. Have we, have I, assumed that light is preferred over darkness? What do we miss if we focus on light at the cost of ignoring darkness?

As we think about darkness for a paragraph or two let us start at the beginning. After conception, how much light does the embryo receive or even require? Total darkness covers the growing fetus, and yet it grows, until finally the unborn child makes its entry into the world of light. The world of darkness was the necessary place for the unborn child to grow—the darkness of the womb was the ideal ingredient for that growth.

Some time ago I read Barbara Brown Taylor’s book Learning to Walk in the Dark. Several statements stood out. She declared, “…new life starts in the dark. Whether it is a seed in the ground, a baby in the womb, or Jesus in the tomb, it starts in the dark.” We usually refer to Jesus as the light of the world. Have we ever considered that Jesus was conceived in the darkness of Mary’s womb? Is this not another illustration of the humanity of Christ? He went “through the darkness” of  a womb just as all humanity. Brown Taylor also states, “I have learned things in the dark that I could never have learned in the light, things that have saved my life over and over again, so that there is really only one logical conclusion. I need darkness as much as I need light.”

It is well known that many people prefer total darkness in order to have a great sleep. Some even cover their eyes with black blinders, hoping for a peaceful sleep. I suspect these individuals much prefer “sleeping in the dark” in order to “live in the light.”

I hope that these few thoughts have piqued your interest, interest that gets you to study this concept further. There is a light that shines in the darkness, which is only visible there.

Can we really have light without the darkness?