March 1, 2016

Letter to a Lonely Heart at 3 a.m.

woman, bed, sleep

It’s the heaviest moment of the night—well after midnight, but well before dawn.

Something piercing about the silence wrenches me from sleep, and I turn to the space beside me. Empty.

Do you hear the silence, too?

Maybe they aren’t coming home tonight; maybe they were never there.

Maybe you slip back into strange dreams of conflict and chaos—or maybe you turn restlessly, disturbed by empty space.

And maybe you smile despite yourself, because this three a.m. silence is one hell of a teacher. And maybe your mirth dissolves into sadness.

Wherever you are, you are not alone; my heart has a message for yours:

Irreplaceable One,

You who are awake, shaken by that empty space—who shivers at the taste of 3 a.m. silence on your tongue—I am restless tonight, too.

No need to pretend with me.

But listen, that terrible silence, all-consuming quiet that so frightens your soul—it has a lesson for you.

Step further into the shadows; don’t shy away. Amongst the ghosts and specters, what else do you see?

I see it. Shining all the more brilliantly for its aloneness—for the darkness around you.

It’s you.

As I am here, solid, deep, filled by my own existence, so are you there, tangible, profound and brimming with light.

Utterly singular.

You lack nothing.

You may not see it—yet—but I do.

Beautiful heart, your so-called loneliness is a precious gift. Cradle it within you, anoint it with your wakefulness, and let it teach you what you need to know.

Step into the shadows.

Notice how you glow.


Author: Toby Israel

Image: Lianne Viau/Flickr


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