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On a cool, starry night I went outside for a cigarette. The stars were twinkling as they do in red and blue, and there were an awful lot of them out. I live 20 minutes from the city, so there is less light pollution and they are a lot clearer.

I stood there with my head back staring straight upwards at the stars. I could imagine our tiny blue planet, revolving around a small, pale yellow star with almost a dozen other planets. This star being one of billions out on one arm of a spiral galaxy. This galaxy being one of billions in an ever expanding, moving, pulsating, changing, living, breathing universe.

For a brief minute I felt the weight of insignificance crushing down, but then I turned this feeling around. I was one of several billion inhabitants on this small blue planet. A part of this great organism of the universe. Put here for some purpose unknown to me, but a part of it all the same. Living, breathing, moving about, creating and expending energy. My random movements and erratic behaviour part of some gigantic clockwork set in motion aeons ago. Yes, I still felt the insignificance of being a midge-fly hovering over the giant pond of the universe, but I was a part of that pond. A necessary inhabitant, without which the universe would become a sterile and cold place.

I went back inside and sat in front of the gas heater and felt more alive and useful than I have in a while. I belonged.

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