Night is the time when we’re alone, isolated in our bed, away from distractions and forced to confront our pain. I used to fear the night. I dreaded falling asleep, while needing rest more than ever before. In the quiet dark, the pain I spent all day running from, would sit right down on the edge of my own bed, like a familiar stranger, just staring at me. I hid from it any way I could; sleeping aids, prescription meds, exhaustion, alcohol… But no matter how great my hiding place, or how long I hid, the pain was relentless. It wouldn’t leave. Night after night, there it sat on my bed. Waiting for me. What does it want from me?!
Eventually, I learned to stare back. I began to even look forward to the night, when I could lie with that familiar stranger, face to face. Today, although the pain remains, its power is weakened. Finally, I am able to look it in the eyes and say, “I’m not scared of you anymore. I am grateful for you.”