You Don't Need Postage For That

We voluntarily lose consciousness, leaving ourselves utterly vulnerable to anything the other person may choose to do to us or our belongings while we sleep.

I’ve been told, by a very reliable source, that when my husband came to bed on Monday night and started to undress, I woke up (or not) and informed him, “You don’t need postage for that.”

My excessively brilliant husband took this in, then replied, “Thank you,” upon which I said, “You’re welcome,” and promptly fell back asleep, while he valiantly stifled his laughter.

I began having nocturnal conversations when my sister and I shared a room as kids. She would come back late from a party with her high school friends, we’d have a brief exchange about who was at the party and what happened, and in the morning I’d have no recollection of our little chat.

I know these conversations happen, however, because sometimes I’ll remember something about them once the incredulous other party reminds me about it. Sometimes I don’t remember the conversation at all, no matter how much detail the other person uses in describing it to me.

Every once in a while, I’ll remember a tidbit on my own the next day, and I’ll ask my husband, “Did this conversation actually happen last night, or did I dream it?”

When I stop to think about it, it amazes me the level of trust we display when we’re willing to fall asleep with other people in the room. We voluntarily lose consciousness, leaving ourselves utterly vulnerable to anything the other person may choose to do to us or our belongings while we sleep.

This vulnerability rises to a new level for me, since I know anything could come out of my mouth in the middle of the night, completely unfiltered by any mechanisms I may employ while I’m awake to protect myself or others from harmful disclosures. And the next day I may not remember it at all.

What a rare and special thing it is to find someone with whom we feel comfortable enough to rise to this level of vulnerability, on a regular basis, and usually without even giving it a second thought. It’s a thing almost all of us share with another, at least at some point in our lives. I don’t think we appreciate it nearly as much as it deserves.

And you don’t need postage for that.

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