I’m afraid of the dark. Go ahead, laugh. I don’t care. I know what the dark really means, what’s there. You couldn’t know, ever, how much you should really be afraid of the dark. I’ve got your attention, what could I be talking about? Listen, and I’ll try to tell you.
We sleep in the dark. Apparently adults can’t find the stillness we need in order to fall asleep without veiling the normal distractions visibility brings in darkness. Sleep, possibly humanity’s greatest physical weakness. We need it to live, yet it leaves us completely vulnerable, unaware of what goes on around us, anyone or anything could come up and do anything and we wouldn’t know. Of course, you say, we’d wake up, but by then it’s too late. What is this thing that could possibly be so terrifying in the dark, you wonder. Vampires? Werewolves? Ghosts or Bogeymen? None of these, my unfortunate friend. That thing that so deeply inspires my own fear of the dark is me. What could I possibly be, you wonder. Not anything so cliché as a vampire, or the bogeyman. Of course you haven’t heard of me, I can only exist in the dark, the unseen, so no one really know who I am. I’m that doubt, that fear, and that question in everyone’s mind, the doubt in oneself, the fear of inadequacy, and the question of one’s worth.
I am thoughts, and I am fear. Indeed, everyone’s greatest fear, that in the end, no matter how hard you try, how much you succeed, you failed at life. It’s ironic, isn’t it, that I, who torment humanity, was created by humanity itself. Indeed, you could say that I am what make people human in the first place. Why then do I fear the dark? I do not fear for myself, but for you, for mankind. I am immortal, for as long men exist, I shall too. But the dark is when I am strongest. Flicking off the lights, then laying down, trying to empty your mind to hold the void of sleep, you are pulling me in, and I slip in to do my job. I whisper reminders, things you did or didn’t do, right or wrong, incorrectly or correctly, it doesn’t matter, because you start to wonder. You start to doubt, and I am there. Even when you do let sleep take you, I am still there, in dreams, or nightmares, and you still wonder, question yourself.
So here is my warning. Keep your distraction out when you go to sleep. Dim them if you must, but accept your inner child, and let that nightlight keep me out. Fear the dark. For I am there, whether in darkness of world, or darkness of mind. Fear the dark, for I will always be there. Fear the dark.