Nature reminds us that magic exists before and right after the darkness.
Golden hour refers to the hour after sunrise and before sunset when the sun is softer and redder compared to when it’s higher in the sky.
Also called magic hour, it is a photographer and filmmaker’s dream.
I first noticed this in a visceral way during a walk with T in fall 2016.
He still sat in a stroller and we were in our old neighbourhood. The leaves had turned fiery yellow, red and orange. It was a sunny late afternoon and kids played loudly in the park.
The sun cast this magical light on the leaves – pictured at the top and below – and it had this incredibly soothing effect.
Phone pictures never do nature justice. But they provide an imprint in our memories that help evoke a specific moment and feeling in time.
On this day, I was lamenting that I was 3/4 into my parental leave. I reminded myself that there was still a lot of quality fun time left with T.
And indeed, there was. Our first Christmas together, our first family trip (a friend’s destination wedding) and celebrating T’s birthday together for the first time – two days before I returned to work.
Conceptually, golden hour exists all around us.
Autumn gifts us with one last display of magic before the dark days of winter. Daylight gets longer in the early days of Spring.
Golden hour reminds me to not fear the darkness, in whatever forms it takes in our lives.
Because there is a golden light that precedes and immediately follows it.
It reminds me to let go of the dread of an end and to enjoy every last moment before the last grain of sand flows down through the hourglass.
The last two weeks, after I shut off my work laptop and came down from my upstairs office, I passed by our kitchen window, which overlooks our backyard.
On the sunny days, I noticed the golden hour light blanket the yellow leaves on our tall maple trees.
I stood and took in the fleeting moments before I went to pick T up from daycare.