A Sleepless Night
She looks at the clock. It is nearing 1am. She has been in bed since 10:30, yet can’t seem to fall asleep. Her husband snores next to her, still buzzing with angst even as he slumbers. The fan is making a tired, ticking sound as though it is going to come apart any minute. It has been a long summer and that fan has hardly taken a night off in months. It, too, is weary from its work.
She gets up to use the restroom one more time and decides to head to the living room so that she doesn’t have to hear that awful ticking anymore.
She settles herself onto the couch, adjusting the cushion behind her back, and opens up her laptop. Perhaps if she can somehow find words to express all her frustration and burdens… maybe then she will be able to sleep, she imagines.
She taps away at the keyboard, briskly pouring out her thoughts onto the screen. She dreams that her meager offering of words will somehow help make it all better. She hopes that if she can just figure out a way to get her heart’s ache communicated clearly, maybe then—somehow— all that is wrong in the world will somehow be made right. Perhaps then things will change, her stress will be relieved, and those who are wreaking havoc in the world will finally see the light and turn from their destructive ways.
Oh, how she longs for change. There aren’t enough tears in her body to completely express how much she longs for peace and for truth and for unity and for a generosity of love to reign.
She taps away for a few hours, working out her thoughts and attempting to make the world a better place through her midnight monologue.
By 3am she has gotten the bulk of her heart out and admits to herself that, though cathartic, her words are insufficient. What she is wrestling with is bigger than what one lone essay can solve.
She feels small and lonely and disappointed.
She emails her written rant to a friend, asking for feedback, and then closes up the laptop, turns off the light, and quietly tiptoes back into her bedroom to snuggle up next to her husband. She lays there for awhile longer, still annoyed by the ticking of the fan, and tries to settle down. Silently, she talks to God about all that is burdening her. She pleads for Him to help her and her husband navigate this journey they are on. She implores Him to bring peace and truth and wisdom and hope in it all. She takes deep breaths in and slowly releases them, endeavoring to calm herself so that she can finally get some rest. She knows she will have to rise in just a few hours to get the kids and herself ready for a busy day.
She prays for the gift of sleep and then, eventually, miraculously, lets it all go.
When she awakes in the morning, the sun already spilling through her blinds, she realizes she has slept in later than usual. She and the kids are going to have to hustle to get to school on time today. She thanks God for the rest she finally found. Then she heaves herself out of bed, marches to the kids’ rooms to wake them, and is soon busy bustling about, getting everyone ready for their various responsibilities that day.
Her heart is still heavy, the burdensome challenges are still there, nothing has been solved— but she is grateful. Grateful for a few hours of rest. Grateful that she communed with God last night. Grateful that, through it all, God is still with her and He will guide her and help her navigate whatever comes her way.
[This is Day 19 of the Write 31 Days Challenge. This year my focus is on the role of STORY in our lives. Click here to get to the landing page with links to each post for this series.]
P.S. In gratitude to all of you faithful readers who have been reading along during this challenge, DaySpring is offering one lucky reader a $100 Shopping Spree to Dayspring.com! Click here to enter yourself.
* * *
What about you?
What keeps you up at night? In what ways have you met God in some of your dark times?
Please share your story in the comment section below.