When the sun had finished lighting the day and slipped below the night sky, I put my work away and turned my attention to the kitchen. A hearty stew had simmered all afternoon, filling the house with the aroma of caramelized onions and bay leaves. I sat at the kitchen table and ate slowly, savoring the rich broth.
I finished my dinner and stood at the sink, holding dishes under the warm spray of water. Be here now, I thought to myself. Feel the water. Feel the smooth roundness of the plate, the cold steel of the pots and pans. But thoughts—judgements—crept in, no matter how hard I tried to stay present. They were thoughts that bubbled up from the pit of fear that lives inside of me.
I dried the dishes and pulled on my coat and scarf. I went out and sat in the garden, under the ancient light of the stars. The moon rose, filling the night with a pale glow—the sun’s reflection. “See there?” I whispered to the fear inside of me. “See that light?” I pointed to the heavens. The light is always shining, no matter how dark it may seem,” I whispered. “Come and sit in the light with me. Talk to me. Tell me what you want me to know.”
The fear that lives within me jumped into my lap and trembled, telling me its worries and woes. “There, there,” I said. “Thank you for sharing with me.” I breathed in the cool of the night air and exhaled. “Feel better now that you’ve got that off your chest?” I asked.
“Yes,” fear replied and then scampered down and began walking away.
“I know you’ll come back. When you do, I’ll be here to listen to you, to comfort you,” I called out as it faded from view. A breeze pushed its way through the garden. I pulled my scarf up over my head. I smiled, completely at ease. I had a full belly, a beautiful night’s sky above me, and fear was gone. I looked up in time to see a shooting star race towards the horizon before I went inside and made myself ready for sleep, ready for when the sun curled her fingers back around the Earth.