After the annual dreary gloom that is brought by the month of November and always seems never-ending, the cheer and joy of December comes as a relief to all.
Our surrounding imagery drastically morphs from the solemn images of soldiers sacrificing themselves in battle and all the horrors that come along with war, to heartwarming images of jovial snow-covered landscapes featuring houses strung with brightly coloured lights and scenes of friends and family gathered around the orange glow of the fireplace. Or maybe those images feature loved ones bundled in their warmest attire to skate across a frozen pond.
December is the calm after the storm, the light emerging from the darkness, the excitement of celebration after a somber month dedicated to remembering the terrors that have struck our world.
It is as though the months are deliberately arranged in a fashion that gives us something to look forward to when we're grieving and struggling through life.
More often than not this tends to be the case after most disheartening or stressful times. The reward at the end dangles in front of you urging you onward like a horse being tempted by dangling carrot.
The key is to remain focused on the reward and not get caught up in the strain it will take to get there.
Whether it is one's way of forging their way through school to acquire work in their desired profession, or something less long term like labouring over a project or training for a marathon, anything worth achieving and being proud of takes a certain amount of effort and unwanted frustration if one wants to do it properly.
People these days are always looking for an easy answer or an easy route through their issues, but success is always preceded by a period of struggle and more often than not failure.
However, the accomplishment felt after fighting for something is always greater than simply being handed it.
Sometimes, to get to the best parts of life one must fight through the more somber ones.
Even the people at the top of their respective areas do not reach there without some amount of struggle and failure.
For instance, Edison and countless inventors like him had to fail numerous times in order to perfect their inventions.
Failure does not mean defeat. It just builds one up so they can come back stronger, wiser and ready to accomplish the task set before them.
There's always going to be Scrooge impersonators crying "Bah Humbug!" - whether it is because they want to be dramatic in a reach for attention or because they haven't broken through the gloomy fog of November yet.
In the end, it is their own willpower and outlook on life that will determine if they have a happy holiday season or not.
In the meantime, I try to force a little cheer down their pessimistic throats to urge them forward towards whatever more positive goal life has in store for them. It is comforting to remember during the tough times that there is something worth working towards and it will be greater than the struggle to reach it.
Don't think this article was an exception to this pattern either.
It was quite an uphill battle.
Jackie Duck is a Grade 12 student at Dr. Charles Best Secondary.