Scylla and Charybdis


I hate 3 am. The hands of the clock touch that time and I am transported.

I lie between Scylla and Charybdis. Problems I didn’t know I even had appear out of nowhere. My bed is my little boat and it is tossed, not by waves, but by my restless heart. It is dark and I am fearful. Dramas unfold in my mind where I accuse myself and others of wrongs. I feel pain more acutely than ever I did in waking hours. My lids tire from squeezing the eyes shut, so they open and see shapeless forms around me that don’t look like furniture anymore.

It is the time of unsleep and unrest. It is a taste of what an eternity of painful suspended animation would feel like. It is the torment of aloneness with a brain that fights against being comforted. I have buried in the hold of my little floundering ship the knowledge of my Comfort, because a wickedness down deep doesn’t believe that He really helps me.

I only pass through this Straight of Night three ways: Either I am dashed against Scylla’s rocks and unconsciousness finally captures me, Charybdis sucks me down into deeper despair in her tumultuous whirlpool, or I grasp at the rope thrown to me by my Heavenly Comforter. My hold is always weak on that rope of words:             YouwillneverleavemeYouwillalwayslovemeYouwillworkthisawfulmessintosomethinggoodsomehow.

Rest comes after the Word-rope pulls me to safety. Slowly, the little boat-bed stops rocking and settles in the calm water. The best sleep comes at this time.

Really restful sleep.


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