The actual and metaphoric sky which umbrellas all earthlings sprinkles and showers us with various shines and shadows. It’s a wacky, windy, wildly unpredictable sky, and so is my job as a sunshine.
I know some of you have been wondering what this position entails. Allow me to explain. Who knows, you might be cut out for this line of work too?
First of all, neither I nor my co-workers are suns; we are sun-shines who derive our heat and energy from the Big Mac Daddy in the sky, the star around which the earth orbits. The sun is boss. Remember, I’m only a part-time sunshine, so I have a lot of other jobs, responsibilities, and realities that can prevent me from always catching up to the SUN, but I give my best, daily.
Since I’m a part-timer, I get to punch in at any point on the sundial. For example, while I teach my students, I can clock in some sunshine time too. Adolescents can always use an extra ray of light. When mothering my own teen and tween, I’m encouraged to pull out extra beams. Lately, this has been dramatic, sassy, and tricky, but there’s an abundance of brightness to go around. My dogs love when I give them extra sunshine with deep belly scratches and jaunts around the neighborhood. It’s easy to log in sunshine minutes for my timesheet; the minimum requirement is 365 minutes a year. That’s it. A minute a day, to absorb and send out a ray. Flex time is a swell fringe benefit.
Every job has its perks and labors. Some days are easier than others, like on the brightest ones when I can just join forces with the other sunshines, and we can bask and gather together to reap and sow the splendor of the sky. It’s the darker days that are trying when we have to chase the sun and unclog the clouds. Blocked up illumination requires a reliable plunger and a lot of elbow grease. Even though our plungers are golden handled, it’s still a messy process. For the really tough jobs, we get to use solar power; it’s unbelievable how many clouds get sucked up by my Shark Rotator Lift-Away Vacuum. I gotta be careful though because my hose accidentally siphoned a lazy crow sleeping in a cloud. Luckily, he survived with the loss of a few tail feathers.
When the solar path is cleared and glows like a Yellow Brick Road, my job is to record and report the radiance of the moment. Armed with a plume of ultraviolet light, I highlight everyday moments and musings to share. I used to only tell my stories, but the boss wants me to write them down and pass them along to a wider audience. The theory is that if I spread slices of sunshine you may also be able to find, capture, and unclog your own bright spots.
When I complete my paperwork, I get a bonus if I helped you do any of the above. I get to pick from an array of solar powered candles, disco lights, and light sabers (great Christmas presents), as well as vitamin D, bluer skies, friendlier smiles, and happier moods.
Being a sunshine is a rewarding job, and we are currently accepting winter applicants. This is our busy time with so many earthlings suffering seasonal affective disorder, winter blahs, holiday humbugs, and sunshine amnesia (current studies being done on this one). If you want to join Team Sunbeam, you begin by focusing. Find and reveal at least one tiny thing that is special, meaningful, amusing, or magnificent every. single. day.
Fill out the application which requires you to share five favorite ways to soak in the sun and you might get recruited as seasonal help. (Remember, this is a figurative sun that denotes warmth, cheer, and happiness.) Be more creative than literally telling us you absorb the sun while laying with your feet in the sand by the ocean with Jimmy Buffett singing on a Caribbean stage while friendly islanders offer mai tais while braiding your hair and teaching the hula. FREE TIP: You are better off telling us how you find sunshine on a cloudy day. Keep it honest and professional.
Should you get hired, you will earn a slick yellow and orange uniform: a bedazzled solar cape, an adorable infrared sunhat, and protective reflective tortoiseshell Ray Bans. (I designed this outfit… and in case you didn’t know, I designed this department’s job.)
All sunshines work with the common goal to spread happiness and comfort, but, at times, we get caught up in turbulent storms, unwavering wind tunnels, and unpredictable forecasts. Sometimes my journey blinds me, and I can’t completely focus on what matters. When this happens, my energy empties and random and painful fireballs tilt me in a game of emotional pinball. I whine, yell, and sob when I get stuck in black cloud movements. I can’t stand wasting my beaming energy like this, missing the sunny parts.
Thankfully, I’ve collected some proven skills and keep learning new techniques for these maddening cloud battles. The biggest thing that I’ve discovered is that I can’t defeat all clouds on my own. Whether you’re on a sunshine team or not, many of you promote the positive in the daily bustle of the mere twenty-four hours we all get. You are vital to our humanity.
Every shadow has a ray of light cast upon it, and there can be no shadow without it. True story on both a literal and figurative level. When slumping through the cold, heavy dark and scratchy times, there is always hope for something warmer, lighter, and softer. Each day starts with a newly resurrected sun, whether or not we see or feel it. Each night ends with the moon, and no matter how full and super it gets, it still has to go to bed. Goodnight, Moon! Time to swoon.
Shine on with the sun, and have a day you dreamed of!
I would love it if you would follow me and my part-time sunshine ventures. All you have to do is sign up with your email address to get notifications of new postings and chances for happiness.
P.S. This is my swimming pool about five months a year. It’s ok.
It’s okay. There’s always a thaw and sunshine to be found.