I’ll never forget how the orange glow of sunrise spilled through my window that morning.
A soft kiss of dawn to calm the nerves.
I was a young child, and I had just woken from a bad dream. In the dream, my parents had died in a crazy house explosion. There were a bunch of irrelevant details to the dream that I can recall, but the thought that my parents were gone is what startled me awake.
So I woke suddenly up on the top bunk of the bunk beds my younger brother and I shared. He was snoring along, oblivious to the imaginary horror that was plaguing me.
At first, I was eager to climb down and run to check on my parents. Yet for some reason, I held back and waited.
The stillness of the house told me that it was very early in the morning. Soft light was barely filtering through the sheer curtains that my mom had put up in our room. Still, there was enough light to keep me unafraid.
My breathing steadied and I focused on the light through the curtains. It was soft and warm, and something about it was just so comforting to me. I soon left behind the imagery of my nightmare and entered a peaceful, contemplative state of mind.
It was a brief moment of pure bliss.
Through the years I have often thought back on that moment. It took me a while to recognize it as something as simple as peace, or bliss, or however people describe it. But since then, I have been chasing that feeling.
It’s hard to explain fully. I’m not sure if it came on with the relief of realizing that a bad dream was just a dream, and I was just a child. I’ve had plenty of nightmares since, but none have been followed by that same feeling.
Sometimes, when I’m really deep in my memories, I miss that blissful feeling. I crave it. I’ll sometimes wake up and hold my breath, waiting for the calm to wash over me.
It hasn’t returned.
That’s not to say that I’m not a happy person. I think I am, generally. But now that I’ve tasted a calm unlike anything I’ve ever known, I’m not sure if I’m of a peaceful mind.
I’ll hold out for bliss. Perhaps it will come floating back with the light through my window.
— J. S.