Silver Linings


Mr. Whit McLeod, Guest Writer, Teacher

What does the term “silver lining” mean? Well, as an English teacher I am going to tell you that it is a figure of speech, an idiom of sorts, that we use in our language to describe something hopeful and positive that can come out of something gloomy and negative. 

It reportedly comes from one of the greatest writers in the English language, John Milton, who described it first in a proverb, “Every cloud has a silver lining” Comus (1634).  In other words, those clouds may look ominous or dangerous over there, but there’s something about the situation that I can look at in a positive and hopeful way. There’s a silver lining to it all.

And that is what we, as a school, are all being asked to do right now. That is, let’s look for positives in this school closure. Look hard, and you may find a silver lining amidst it all.

Sure, you are sad that you can’t hang out with your friends in person, but look at the fact that we have FaceTime, Zoom, Facebook Messenger, or the many other outlets you have. Think about the fact that your parents and teachers wouldn’t have had these technologies because they didn’t exist yet when they were coming along.

Sure, you don’t have spring sports currently, but we can all still get outside–at a distance from one another–and enjoy the beautiful world we live in, or  do a workout inside at the very least. 

Sure, you don’t get a chance to sing, or dance, or perform on your instrument right now in those live performances with audiences watching, but we have opportunities to put our talents out there to be seen by others in our incredible world.

Sure, your brother or sister or mom or dad is driving you crazy right now while you are being all cooped up in one space together all the time, but have you ever thought about the fact that you get to spend quality time with your family or your friends online? Have you ever hit the half-speed or pause button in our fast-paced world to just sit back and notice the ones you love are right… there… in front of you?

Well, that my friends is a silver lining. And what we choose to focus on and think about can really direct our lives for good or bad. So, how about we–CMS as a whole–look towards those dark clouds on the horizon with confidence, clarity, and calm? Because, you know, there’s a silvery tint outlining them all…if you choose to look hard enough.

Hang in there, CMS!

— Mr. “silver lining to the clouds” McLeod