Somebody, somewhere (which is a lazy way of saying that I couldn’t be bothered googling it at 6am in the morning) came up with the idea of the Darkness into Light walk. Starting at 4am, over 100,000 people in our country began walking a 5km pilgrimage into the light of the morning in aid of Pieta House, an organisation that helps those who are feeling suicidal or are self-harming.
That spark of inspiration, an idea that grew in the mind of one very clever person motivated over 100,000 people to awaken from a deep sleep at 3am to get to the starting line to walk for those who need help, support, the love of a community who believe with intervention that they can in no little way help to show those in trouble the way back to the light.
Today, though deliciously, I got to chat to many local people that I’ve come to know in my new role as a ‘Kerry woman’, I walked for the most part alone as the community of Listowel came together. In doing so, I was able to partake and eavesdrop in on many early morning conversations in the spirit of giddiness (what are we doing up at this hour of the morning in the honour of God) and good intention.
Birth stories were exchanged, ten stitches in all, war wounds, lost high heels at last weeks wedding, the sausages that were awaiting him in the fridge, her shiny medal displayed on her jumper as she walked in from school, the ankle that was starting to give him gib all in the most melodic North Kerry accent.
Normally, at Listowel race course, we’d be gathered to check out the fashion at the races, meeting up after the harvest in September to place a token amount on a horse without really having much of an idea about races but knowing a lot about community. The same familiar faces there to show support. The message was clear though nobody really needs it spelt out.
Walking into the light, I remembered how I was complaining all week about having to do this, this chore. But was so glad I did. It is a reminder to do good, to offer kindness (too often undervalued),to love others. Maybe it’s the adenaline which is quickly wearing off, but it was a lesson, once again, on the beauty of humanity, the capacity of people to come together to do something so beautiful, so kind, to show that there is always light. There is always light.
The babies are waking, the cows are bellowing, this light, along with a lot of coffee will fuel this morning but for now, I know that it is great to be alive, to be a part of something inspired. Now, for a quick nap, let me tell you, it’s tiring being this great.
Enjoy the light.