Alarm goes off. Bathroom. Brush teeth. Throw on workout clothes. Wake kid one. Wake kid two. Pack lunches. Make breakfast. Take vitamins. Help find shoes. Hustle out the door to catch bus. Leisurely walk home. Start hustling to get next kid ready for school.
My weekday mornings look pretty much the same, and they begin abruptly and keep a pretty good pace for the first hour and a half or so. Driving my oldest daughter to school the other day I saw a man, maybe in his late 40s, shuffling out to the end of his driveway in a robe and slippers to get the newspaper. Think about that for a second. This was not a senior citizen, this was not a housewife, this was a guy about the age of my husband doing something I’ve seen in movies or in my memories of growing up. But rarely is this a scene I see in today’s American culture. I see plenty of sharply dressed men getting in their cars to head to the office, plenty jogging around the neighborhood to get their exercise in first thing, plenty in the carpool line probably capping off a morning that looked very similar to mine. I found it extremely refreshing to consider for a moment what this man’s morning looked like.
I’ve had periods when I set my alarm to go off 30 minutes before anyone needed to wake up so I could read poetry, putter in the kitchen, meditate, whatever. I actually love the early morning hours when all the world is still in slumber. However, in order to get an adequate amount of sleep, this requires going to bed earlier which I haven’t quite been able to nail down as of late. But when I did it I felt like I was setting the framework for the day. I was honoring the silence, the intimate time with myself, and opening to some inspiration with which to fuel my day.
I heard an interview with a man recently who would often set his alarm 20 minutes early so he could lay in bed and watch an old Seinfeld rerun before starting his day because he wanted to begin with a laugh. I love that!! So many people wake up in the morning with the to-do list running through their head, with dread for what may lie ahead, with a deep sigh that they’re beginning another day of drudgery. This is all a choice! Each and every day has the potential to be extraordinary, nurturing, easy, invigorating…so much of it is your choice. It is so much how we react to the events that occur in our life that defines the quality of our day. If getting up to watch a Ted Talk on your computer or doing some sun salutations on your back deck sets you off on the right foot, then find a way to make that happen for yourself. Maybe you take a leisurely bath instead of a shower. Maybe you put on some music and dance in your pajamas while you drink your coffee.
There are always things to get done, always deadlines, always monotony. Lay in bed and take a deep breath and fill your lungs with HOPE. The day is full of potential…how are you going to approach it?