One of my favourite times of the day is in the early morning while I get to sit in my living room in what is mostly darkness, waiting for daylight to appear. The scene outside my window changes from a black sky with one small lamp lighting an entrance to a building to one side, a flickering light atop an antenna tower about seven kilometres away on the hills in the south, and that is about it – until the darkness begins to shift, slowly, to dawn.
I feel comfortable in this early morning darkness, but I much prefer sunshine and warm temperatures which invite me to be outside, skyclad. It wasn’t always like this. It wasn’t many years ago that I hid my need for being skyclad in sunshine. Back then, I was going crazy, slowly losing my soul. If it hadn’t been for my feeling at home in darkness, I would never have survived this long. Darkness held my sanity intact. In the darkness, no one saw or cared if I spent those hours without clothing.
This morning, I took advantage of the darkness to go outside regardless of the fact that the temperature was at the freezing point, 0C/32F. I set up my camera with the timer set, and then set the scene for my daily photo for my journal. Then, I turned on a few lights. I was outside, exposed. Down the street, I saw lights on in a few houses, as well as two vehicles warming up. The town had begun to wake up and the possibility of being seen by anyone passing by was real. Then, I took the photo which you see above. I wasn’t hiding in darkness anymore.
I began to spend time in darkness, awake and unclothed, when I was a teenager, and adolescent on the verge of being a man. It was the only quiet time for me in a house filled with eight children. I had a lot to process and found being naked and listening to classical music being played at very low sound levels in the darkness to be an act of healing. It was all about privacy and freedom and safety. Perhaps these early experiences taught me more than I realised.
I still enjoy darkness, but I don’t hide in it anymore.