insomnia’s gift

I awoke to the sound of the bedroom door being eased open in early morning.

Actually, eased might be the wrong word. The door isn’t hung quite right on the hinges, so it sticks against the frame and requires a little bit of a firm-grasp-and-yank technique, which is why it woke me up.

I opened my eyes in time to glimpse my husband slipping through the door and trying to gently shut it again. With the dresser clock glowing a 4:03, I tried to fall back asleep, but five minutes later I and the dog padded out on sleepy feet to ask why he was awake so early on a Sunday morning — this would be a normal time for him during the week, but not today. “Couldn’t sleep,” he replied. I sunk back into bed, but found that his insomnia was contagious. After forty five minutes of my own lying awake in bed, I joined him on the porch.

There’s something sweet about the mornings. I’m grateful to be able to wake up quickly and shake off sleep, especially in the summer with nothing in the darkness but the sound of crickets. Even the birds don’t awake till daylight, but the crickets sing through the dark and the sticky humidity still present at 4:52 a.m.

Perhaps one of my favorite things about the morning is the lack of distractions. I don’t feel obligated to start a load of laundry or do last night’s dishes. Social media is dead because everyone is asleep. And after enjoying breakfast (the dog’s favorite part of the morning), even he doesn’t require much attention. It seems easier to create space with meet God in the mornings, crickets forming a soundtrack better than any I used to study to in college.

I wish I made more space in my life to sit with God like this, like a child contented to just sit in her parent’s lap, asking nothing but the gift of presence. Too often I deny God of giving me His presence because I am too busy with the presence of this world, and that’s something I need to change.

But this morning, this time — it’s a gift. I might need to ask for the gift of a nap later on today, but for now, I soak in the warm air and the stillness.


a penny for your thoughts

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