Making Peace with the Quiet

The other day Craig was gone overnight. I’m a natural worrier and being home alone with the kids all night quite literally terrifies me. But I did it. I survived it and I survived it quite well, if I do say so myself. I had very minimal panicking and finally watched Knives Out for the first time (liked a lot). All in all, it was a confidence boost I needed. Go me.

But I also learned something. Well actually, I was reminded of something.

I hate being alone with my own thoughts.

Like so much.

There was a short period of time after the kids had gone to bed and fallen asleep that I sat on the couch in silence. No phone. No tv. No noise. Complete silence and no distractions. I just sat there. Then, no surprise, the thoughts started coming in. My stupid thoughts that have a tendency of making good moments scary in seconds. I immediately started fearing the worst – bad things happening to Craig on his road trip, my kids health and happiness not being great… stuff like that. I tried to shift my thoughts, and it only worked for a few seconds before another flood of gross thoughts plagued my mind. I couldn’t shake them away. It felt like an attack. These thoughts felt intrusive and cruel.

I was brutally reminded why I never sit in the quiet with my thoughts. Like ever. I always have music on, or the chatter of my kids, or the tv, or a podcast, or something – anything that makes noise. Heck, I can’t even sleep at night without a fan blasting next to my bed because I’m comforted by its buzzing.

I, like every other mom, crave the quiet. I love the stillness and peacefulness of the quiet. But it never lasts for me. I only sit in the quiet for so long before I either turn noise on or distract my brain with my phone or something. Sometimes I try to embrace the quiet and write or read, but even that, I see, is distraction.

Its like I’m truly incapable of sitting alone with myself. I don’t know how to make it a pleasant experience. My brain makes it awful. So much so that I actively avoid situations that leave me in the silence with no form of distraction. Its kind of ridiculous if you think about it.

But this woke me up. I need to change this.

I haven’t been taking care of myself physically as much as I have been lately the last little while. I’m allowing myself to get too comfortable being constantly distracted. When I’m actively taking care of myself and being mindful of where my mind is at, I do better with these icky thoughts. But obviously lately that hasn’t been the case.

Its embarrassing to me. I hate that thats my reality.

So I’m going to make peace with my silence. The quiet isn’t going to scare me anymore. I can’t let it.

I’m starting with forcing myself to sit in these moments more. My theory is, if I sit in silence at least once a day, my brain will get trained to better fight off those thoughts, or at least not to dwell on them. I’m going to use a lot of prayer to help this journey out too, because I fully believe prayer helps and Heavenly Father is the greatest tool in helping one reach their goals.

But you better bet if I hear a thump somewhere in my house where I know no living thing is at – I’m turning back on all the noise!

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