How I Got Over Being Afraid of the Dark

photo by keijar
photo by keijar

I love Halloween. The costumed reveling, bowls of candy, jack o’lanterns flickering on stoops. I especially like the way we mark the beginning of this season of slipping into the long winter nights, by striking matches and lighting little lights against the big, big dark outside.

A few years ago I discovered – to my great chagrin – that I’m afraid of the dark. I was at Hedgebrook, a writer’s colony on Whidbey Island in the Puget Sound. Each writer had her own little cottage in the woods. I had a sleeping loft and a wood-burning stove; a lavender and sage scented bathhouse with a claw foot tub was a short walk away. There were blackberry bushes heavy with sweet, dark fruit, a fig tree, an herb garden, and a cat who wove her scent around your ankles when you walked down the path to the main house for supper.

And at night, it was dark. Continue reading How I Got Over Being Afraid of the Dark