To Be Quiet

I crave quiet.

Long, uninterrupted afternoons. Mornings without televisions or radios to cheat the peace. Early-to-bed night-times lit by the small yellow bulb of my reading lamp while a book lulls  me to sleep.

This internet-connected, always rushing and moving world is sometimes tough for me. At once I enjoy the activity and resent it, schedule countless appointments and simultaneously ache to be alone. I am a 50/50 introvert-extrovert who can’t decide where to land.

This past year—of work and an expanded family—has leaned more toward the extroverted than introverted. So this week I’m nurturing the quieter side. Today my husband and I leave for a trip, just the two of us. Although we feel blessed to have added members to our family this year, the activity and responsibility have left us both exhausted. And missing each other.

So we’re exiting the chaos for a few days. To be quiet. In addition to rest and relationship, I plan to make room for spiritual reflection and personal introspection. As Brother Lawrence said, “It isn’t necessary that we stay in church in order to remain in God’s presence.” I plan to do church on a soft, sandy beach.

Facebook, Twitter and my computer and phone will stay at home. And I won’t post here again until the first week of November. Until then, I leave you with a rich passage from Norton Juster, of The Phantom Tollbooth:

Have you ever heard the wonderful silence just before the dawn? Or the quiet and calm just as a storm ends? Or perhaps you know the silence when you haven’t the answer to a question you’ve been asked, or the hush of a country road at night, or the expectant pause of a room full of people when someone is just about to speak, or, most beautiful of all, the moment after the door closes and you’re alone in the whole house? Each one is different, you know, and all very beautiful if you listen carefully.

If you haven’t done so recently, consider disengaging from the noise and busyness for a time. What would a few hours of quiet do for you?

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