“What are you doing now?”
he asks me, blue eyes flashing, eyelids crackling, knowing light alight.
“Oh… I’ll just stay up, I think. I’m going to get some work done. I wanted to get this done.”
He looks at the clock.
“You think that would be a good idea at this time?”
“Yeah… it takes me ages to fall asleep at the moment. My brain is going too fast. I have so many ideas!”
“I know, I know honey. But why don’t you just lie in bed anyway? It is good to lie in bed. It is good to relax your body and your mind. It can feel like a wonderful thing to do that.”
And he kisses me, and he walks away.
He leaves me to make up my own mind.
Doesn’t push me too far, doesn’t spend his time trying to convince me, doesn’t push like a bulldozer.
That’s what I do.
That’s what I’m healing.
And of course, he has his own stuff that he’s not perfect with. Stuff he’s healing and learning about.
But that’s his story. He gets to share that with whoever (or nobody) as he pleases.
I joke often about the very private man who married the world’s winning blabbermouth, incapable of keeping a secret to save herself. The one who has been blogging about every spare feeling she’s had since 2004.
But this is not really about that.
This is about the fact that he went to bed, head falling into pillow, looking up at the ceiling, waiting for his body to soften and float away.
And how he loves that great time of softening.
The man who is okay with the non-doing. The empty space.
Who married a woman who is not.
And he teaches me.
Me, this hyperactive must-do-all-the-things-er. This can’t-sit-still. This must-run-and-jump. This eternal seeker of achievement.
Come. Let’s just rest. Let’s just perfect the art of nothing. There is great joy here too.
So I follow him to bed.
Stare at the ceiling, head whirring, tapes unpooling from the records of the day.
And he begins to snore long before I do.
But still, this empty, dark space is a cure I didn’t know I needed, leeching the adrenaline and the stories from my bones.
No work, no shimmering white screen clutched before me, no one-last-thing-ticked-off-the-to-do-list.
Just me, and the great softening.
A glacial warming.
Just what is needed.
To softening, and beyond,
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