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We Need The Dark

Kari spends much of her time thinking about the meaning of life and time. She has concluded love is the meaning and time doesn't exist.


This article is about how, if we never had bad, we would never truly appreciate the good. If we never really had to fight, how could we really appreciate the conquest.

If you had never been alone, would you know what loneliness is? You would know the dictionary meaning, but would you know the emotion? I do not think you can know the fullness of having others in your life if you have never been lonely.


I grew up with two sisters and one brother close to my age. We also had one sister who was nine years younger than me. Between my sisters, brother and parents, I was never alone. I savored alone time. I would find it in small minutes and little whiles. I loved being alone.

I was never really alone. I had a strong faith in God and he has never left me. I am never alone, but sometimes it is nice to have a friend here in the physical world.

As I grew older, I moved away from my family. I made friends, got married, got divorced and found loneliness. I was so used to people always being around me, that I had never experienced loneliness before.

I started appreciating my friends here on earth even more. I had never understood loneliness, never having been alone. Only after experiencing loneliness could I really and fully appreciate love.

Working and Fighting

I have had a pretty easy life. (Most of it.) I am smart and school was never a problem. I did not have to study very hard. I have good retention and recall. This is a blessing, not anything I did. I never had to fight very hard to make my grades. I took it for granted that I would get "A"s and I usually did.

Then nursing school came along. Suddenly I was challenged more than I had ever been before. I still got "A"s, but now I had to fight for them. There was nothing easy about nursing school. I had to put myself on a strict schedule of studying, school, and clinicals.

Each "A" I received in nursing school made me proud. I earned the grade. I could no longer take it for granted. I had to work and fight for each one. I realized this was how people had felt in high school. They had to work and fight for their grades. That is why it seemed to mean so much to them. I had finally learned the thrill of conquest.


Without the ability to compare and contrast, we assume what we feel and see is normal. If there was no dark, we would not even have words for light or dark. We would not need them, there would be no comparison. We would never "look for the light" or "feel the light". No one would be scared of the dark. There would never be a "cold, dark night". I wonder what we would call dark feelings.

We Need The Dark

If it wasn’t for the dark, there would be no light.

If it wasn’t for the wrong, there would be no right.

If it wasn’t for the silence, there would be no sound.

If it wasn’t for the lost, there would be no found.

In this life there is bad and good,

By comparison each is understood.

Without the one, could we know the other?

Would we know order without the clutter?

If it wasn’t for the empty, there could be no full.

If it wasn’t for the ruckus, there could be no lull.

If it wasn’t for the crazy, there could be no calm.

If it wasn’t for the hurt, there could be no balm.

When the good comes, remember the bad,

It makes the good better to be had.

Comparison is what it’s all about,

How the bad makes all the good stand out.

Without the violence, there would be no peace.

Without the agony, there would be no release.

Without the horror, there would be no singing.

Without the end, there would be no beginning.

We are each given to understand,

The glory of the good in our hands.

We need the dark dusk, the fog and gloom,

To see the light as each day it blooms.



There are so many feelings that we do not understand. If we never lived through war, how could we really understand peace. Many of us are lucky in having enough. We can say we understand insufficiency, but do we genuinely understand. Have you ever been in a situation where there was not enough food, no clean water, no roof over your head?

If we have never been in a situation, we can never actually understand the emotions fostered. Sometimes, through the stories of friends and acquaintances, we can get an inkling of the feelings. Empathy is God's gift to us.

There was a point in my life when I felt guilty for all God had given me that had not been given to others. Now I do not feel guilty. I'm glad that I have never felt war or homelessness. I just wish everyone could have what I have. I wish it could be true for all people.

Embrace Your Loss

I am learning to embrace my losses. Each end brings a new beginning so sweet. Every night closes with a breathtaking sunrise. I feel that you can never appreciate something until you lose it. You can appreciate it, like I appreciated my good grades as a child. But until you are without, or have to fight for it, you will not really appreciate the having.

I hope everyone reading this has sufficiency in every day. But I know not everyone does. Try to remember that all darkness ends. I know what it is to lose hope. But I have found it again. Try to find your hope. Maybe you will find hope because of your family. Maybe you will find hope because of a hobby. Many times we can find hope in a pet.

I have been in that pit with no light in sight. Feeling overwhelmed when I thought of how much it would take me to fight my way out. Wondering why bother. Just wanting to lay down and die.

Please find a stick to latch onto. I know it is nearly impossible, but you need just one little stick. As you keep this stick it will grow until it is a tree that surrounds you. You will rest in it's shade and listen to it's song in the breeze. One little hope can grow into more. I love you!

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-8255

The Good and Bad Song

© 2017 Kari Poulsen

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