I’m almost 17, and I’m still afraid of the dark

I’m almost 17, and I’m still afraid of the dark

It began in the darkness, and it was there, in this barren chasm of the unknown, where I first recall coming face to face with fear’s unforgiving glare.

It seems almost as if I shared my weariness with most other children. The feeling of angst that comes along with an unlit, ink background was a shared agitation among many.

Some people feared the sickly hands of a monster creeping out from under the bed, while others couldn’t let go of the looming idea that ghosts might arrive in the black of night. Although these factors did cause me to feel a sense of concern as a child, it wasn’t quite the pinpointed reason why I couldn’t handle the foreboding darkness.

Maybe it was its emptiness that made uncertainty invade my thoughts; the darkness was too devoid of anything, and its obscurity held too many possibilities for my small, inexperienced mind to handle.

A decade has passed, and this nascent fear from my childhood grew over the years, expanding from its initial point in the dark.

I began to see the world for not only its delicate, soft petals but for its dusty, hidden roots, as well. My understanding of the surrounding events in the world expanded. In some aspects, these coming-of-age moments created positive ripples in my societal views, but in another way, it was a time that caused fear to crawl out from under the bed.

This greater awareness engendered a fear of the darkness once again, but I do not shiver at the sight of twilight streaming through my window, anymore; instead, it is the darkness of the world that shakes me.

It is the darkness of the heartless people not caring about the Earth or other people that frightens me, and it is the darkness of the unacceptable number of dehumanizing events of genocide and war that causes terror to replace the blood in my veins.

However, nightlights were made to teach people to be comfortable with the darkness, and no one should feel comforted by this cryptic dusk; it’s too obscure, too devoid of anything.”

It is the world breaking apart that causes distress to tremble, and moments like these make me long for a time when the greatest threat lied under my bed. But simply physically turning on the lights cannot eliminate the fear anymore.

In a world controlled by those enveloped by demand for power, the people are often left as a second priority, and the powerful sometimes attempt to console others by installing nightlights, only allowing minuscule cracks of light to shine clearly through.

However, nightlights were made to teach people to be comfortable with the darkness, and no one should feel comforted by this cryptic dusk; it’s too obscure, too devoid of anything.

This darkness unnerves me for this reason, that it’s too empty. It’s vacant of light, of humanity.