Light and Loveliness

Reflections of Emily Sue Allen

Life & Faith / Motherhood


I’ve been wanting to write, but the words have eluded me. I have about ten million thoughts that have come and gone without making an appearance on the blog this past month, and while I hope some of them make it here soon, I keep coming back to the theme of quietness.

Quietness is hard for me. Always has been. To be left alone with my thoughts…my fears…not a happy thing. In former seasons, I would have described myself as terrified of quietness. In my first months as a mother, as a new resident of Southern CA (at the time) with almost zero personal contacts, I had hours upon days upon weeks of solitude with my first wee babe. The days felt unbearably quiet and I tried to fill them with as much noise as I could find. It was then that my interest in photography started to pick up speed, probably because I was so uncomfortable with the quiet, I had to distract myself with something. I cared for my baby’s physical needs, but I really had no idea how fast the early days would go, so I kind of tuned out the rest and busied myself with calling friends, searching the internet for photography tips and tutorials, and keeping every empty space filled with something because the emptiness hurt too much.

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Over the years, as I have grown as a mother and found the emptiness filled by more purposeful things (as opposed to haphazard ones I just stuck there to just take up space), I have grown more comfortable with the idea that quietness isn’t just some cruel thing to remind me of my loneliness, but instead an open space for God to speak His mysteries and loveliness to me, if I will listen. I still don’t love everything about it…it is a vulnerable place, and motherhood can for-sure be a lonely journey even with a handful of amazing friends who check in, but I’m finding myself more willing to go there. To stay there. To sit there and listen the best I can.

In the quietness, I notice more. How beautifully He crafts a story. How His wisdom blows my mind. How His gentleness massages my cold and selfish heart into something beating. Giving. Alive. How I can see the bleakness of the world and still feel hope under me, holding me up over the abyss that calls and taunts. How each of my tears count for something, purging my heart of ugliness and heartache. How peace and purpose can come to even the most anxious, fearful, hurting person, which truthfully was once me.

So even though I hope for more of my words to return soon, I am thankful for the quietness of my heart in this season.


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