Contrary to anything poetic, I don't feel protected by nightfall. I feel the most vulnerable, the most bare, the most susceptible at night. And that isn't because I sleep naked. (Haha. I don't. Or do I? Hmmm...) It's because the stillness of our building is almost impenetrable and we get only beautiful moonlight in our bedroom- I feel like I'm covered by a velvet cloak. But the velvet cloak doesn't protect me from anything, it just makes me comfortable.
If I don't fall asleep immediately I'm left looking at the moon and listening to Mike's quiet breathing. The cat's at the foot of the bed curled up at my feet and all I'm left with are my thoughts. In writing about it I want to be nowhere else but there. But when all those pieces fall together I'm confronted with only myself. With nothing to distract me all I'm left with are the thoughts in my head.
The thoughts aren't specific. In fact I really just find myself facing this urgent dread. It's not urgent dread like OMG I think I left the stove on. It's more like existential dread. What am I doing here? Am I being true to myself? What is this crazy thing called life? Without the usual distractions I'm faced with the complete unknown. That can be a little scary. I never reach any conclusions or formulate ideas. I either fall asleep or force myself to think of butterflies and rainbows to escape the heavy feeling in my chest.
It sounds like a chance to meditate but it feels much more sinister. Sometimes I don't know how I calm down and sleep. These nights don't happen incredibly often, but do they pack a whollop. Life will eventually take us away form this apartment and I'll face a new kind of silence. I'll probably miss this kind. Go figure.