A golden glimmer of hope

June 25, 2020


Glittery Christmas ornaments. Photo by leslieannetarabella.com

Like a disco ball at the skating rink, I know it’s tacky, but it’s still just so pretty, I can’t stop looking. There’s a speck of glitter embedded in my living room rug, left over from Christmas, and for some weird reason, I love it. 

Gold glitter

As I swish around the house at night cutting off the lights, there it is. At the end of the sofa, in front of the fireplace, glimmering gold. Always too tired to mess with it at night, I make a mental note to deal with it later, yet when I return to search during daylight hours, discover it’s no longer visible.

Days, weeks and now months of trying to free the one speck of glitter have proven useless, because every night, in the perfectly lit beam of the lamp, there it is. Still a reminder of December days and tidings of comfort and joy that seem a million years ago. 

The COVID-19 virus and agitated world in which we live is surreal and filled with so many sick, angry, sad and lonely people. We’re cut-off from those we love and even though we may not be officially depressed, we’re taking on the qualities of those who are overwhelmed with sadness. Overeating, oversleeping and a heavy hearts are the result of weddings that have been cancelled and funerals postponed. Family reunions are on hold, we can’t cuddle new babies and who knows what will happen with schools this fall?

A golden glitter of hope by Leslie Anne Tarabella

That exact spot on the rug has been vacuumed 5,000 times by my staff (my son who is home from college), and yet, the miniscule sparkle appears again every night. I feel the festive speck has exhibited such deep determination to cling to our family that it deserves a place of honor and should be allowed to remain. 

The true reason I don’t get up right now and go on a full search-and-destroy mission for the glitter is really because that microscopic gleam of gold actually makes me happy. It’s a reminder of the peace and fun we shared last December and maybe even a literal glimmer of hope for a normal holiday season yet to come. 

If one spot of glitter on my rug gives me a split second to remember the last time the world felt orderly and we were all together celebrating, then it’s okay with me to leave it there.  Probably shaken from the Christmas tree while I was packing away the ornaments while watching bowl games and finishing off the last of the Christmas cookies, it’s a nightly reminder that things were once normal, happy and sparkly. 

Here we are at the beginning of hurricane season, and I’m finding comfort in a single speck of leftover Christmas glitter. It’s getting warmer and muggier outside, and the humidity is already thick, and yet there, on the rug, if I tip my head just right and squint my eyes as I reach for the lamp, there is the most glorious happy sparkle that somehow links me to a time when everyone was home, no one was sick, our businesses were booming and there were glittery ornaments on the tree. 

This story was first on AL.com and in their newspapers, The Mobile Press-Register, The Birmingham News and The Huntsville Times.

  • Margaret Neely says:

    I love this one. You are so right, sometimes it is the very small things that give us joy and hope – the Lord knows we can all use it.

  • I third Arlene! When I turned 50 my friends filled my office hip high with black balloons and rigged a pack of glitter to fall on me when I opened my door. They totally forgot our darling custodian, also named Roxie, cleaned at 5 AM! She was not amused!! When I retired at 62 and started packing and sorting, there were pieces of glitter hiding everywhere. BTW, my sister and I have named Colonoscopy Prep the official cocktail of 2020!!

  • Arlene Cocke says:

    Ms.Leslie: Your golden glimmer of hope was beautiful!

    Your ability to make a tale out of a speck of glitter just teasing you, is remarkable.

    Don’t ever stop.

    • Thanks Arlene. When I was in college, I told a boyfriend about my curling iron not working right and his only response was, “You can talk about anything!” I took it as a compliment – hahaha! Here’s to hoping you find sparkles in your life this week!

  • I have my Mardi Gras beads still hanging on my mirror. I usually take them down the night of Fat Tuesday. This year, I had to abruptly end my visit and return home to hibernate. Who knew I wouldn’t get to make a summer visit back to my favorite getaway spot… and now with all like it is, my fall visit is not looking too good. Let’s have Christmas now!

    • That’s a great idea to celebrate now! Who knows what tomorrow will bring? I’ve been wondering if you were here summering in town. Let me know if you ever do get down this way and we can find caffeine together.

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