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In the silent hours

The house is still, though it never seems to be exactly silent.  Always there is a buzz, a sigh, a whirl.  Fans spinning or washing machines, dogs snoring or people turning over.  In the night, we are at our most vulnerable.  And yet, we trust.

In my heart there is a persistence of hope during these silent hours.  It changes from day to day, that thing I hope for.  Some days it is a small hope for better weather or maybe some rain.  Other days, it is a heavy burden holding me down and I just want it to float away.  I turn this way and that, searching searching, I'm not sure what for.  I keep wondering when I'll find it, that thing that makes the pieces come together in the right order.  I often think that, perhaps, that thing is already here and I've just gotten really good at ignoring it.  Whatever IT is.

In these silent hours, mind spinning and thoughts a blur, I let my body slow down into that pattern of just before sleep.  Heavy eyes, beating heart, aching bones.  I look into the darkened rooms and outline their sleeping shapes under blankets.  Sweet faces mellowed by the dreams they're having.  Carly likes to turn over, talking all the way in half-made sentences.  Tonight it was something about money, I think.  Josh likes to bend himself into impossible angles, head and feet out of whack.  The silent dark surrounds them, buries them, cradles them.  And through it, they trust.

A funny thing, this sleeping silent world.  I am at once grateful and annoyed.  I search for order and perfection, finding very little and also very much.  A paradox.  I'm just beginning to know this friend/enemy called paradox.  It's hard to live with.  Some slow, silent nights I am almost eaten alive by it.  By the waiting and the wishing and the wanting, all unsatisfied.  I am troubled by it, finding my faith on shaky ground, finding my hope eroded away.  In the midnight hour, I look this paradox in the face and find more questions there.  And still, I trust.

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