Star Light, Star Bright

I was chatting with someone earlier today about my love of stars.

“The ones in the sky? Or the shape?” she asked.

“The shape,” I said, but then in my head debated whether it was really both.

I decided it was both.

When I was little, I remember being home with my brother. Mom and dad were out for the evening, and he was babysitting. I was probably in 1st grade, and my room was dark but I’d opened my mini blinds and was staring at the stars in the western sky. It was a crystal clear night, and one star in particular (maybe it was a planet?) was shimmering in the darkness; it seemed to change from blue to white to pink to yellow to green.

My brother must have heard me up and moving around, because he came in to check on me. I pointed out the brilliant, twinkling star that couldn’t decide on a color and he came over to look. We stared at it in silence for about 10 seconds, and finally he let out a quiet, “Hm,” as if to say, “Yeah…weird. But pretty.”

Somewhere around 4th grade, maybe, I decided I wanted a telescope. Santa brought one for Christmas that year, and I spent many nights with it looking at the moon. It didn’t work as well with stars, so those I simply admired from afar.

A few years back, I became the proud recipient of a diamond necklace for Christmas…in the shape of a star. It’s beautiful and sparkles nicely, but will never be as awe-inspiring as the real ones.

I brought home my office decor last Friday, and among my various knickknacks were five stars. Three are meant to be hung on a wall, two are upright votive holders with star-shaped, tin cutouts that have tiny holes punched in them; they’re meant to be backlight by the glow of a candle. I may need to introduce one or more into my new space, minus any wall-hanging — for now, anyway.

Last summer, I stumbled across a site called SkyMaps. It provides a lovely way to more easy find your way around the constellations and such by allowing the user to print a paper map that you then hold above your head, as though you’re using a map on a roadtrip. Sure enough, it’s spot-on. Jupiter and Venus are super cozy and neighborly right now in the west, Mars — mid-sky — feels left behind and is trying to crash their party (but won’t catch up anytime soon), and in a few months the summer triangle consisting of Altair, Deneb and Vega will appear. Something about those three makes me want to BBQ late into the night. I’m not sure why.

I just stepped outside and breathed in the night air. The red point of light overhead, Mars, was bright and glimmering. It may not get close to Jupiter and Venus anytime soon, but all of my starry memories, decor and baubles keep me close to them.

Tonight I am thankful for the magical mindset that stars bestow. Whether they’re objects in a room, sparkles around my neck or the real thing high above, they bring a calm warmth that an old friend would bring, a lightness to my step and a brightness to my thoughts.

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