I am perpetually exhausted. My soon to be 11 month old has slept through the night maybe 5 times. I wake up every morning craving sleep. I have tried every tactic to get him to sleep longer, better. All I want is more sleep.
Typically our routine is to stay in our pajamas until the first nap of the day. Since we are on a two nap schedule still, I reason that I still have the 2nd nap to be productive. But this is a battle in itself. I never know the best time to drink my coffee and it causes even more frustration if my son doesn’t nap well for one or both naps.
The past few mornings have been different though. The mornings were no different than the last 11 months except for how I chose to start the day. Instead of loathing the early wake up call, I made a different choice.
I chose to get up and go.
I didn’t struggle with the timing of my coffee or feel frustrated that I was up with the sun. I put on my shoes and put my son in the stroller. Yes, he may have still be in his pajamas, but I wasn’t. I was ready to go.
We walked along the beach in the sunshine to start our day. That sentence needs repeating: we. walked. along. the. beach. in. the. sunshine. As I was walking, my initial thoughts weren’t how tired I was or how much I wanted to be in bed still. Instead, I wondered why I didn’t begin every day like this.
I seem to have convinced myself that if I truly got up when he did, and didn’t just wait for the first nap, that somehow I was going to be even more tired as the day went on. There may have been some truth to this. But there was also a lot of irritation and annoyance at having wasted a chunk of my day. It’s not like I was able to go back to sleep since he was already awake. Making the choice to get up and move felt better. It felt natural to start my day that way.
The world seemed brighter. More hopeful. I felt a genuine connection to everyone out there on the boardwalk together (part of the connection I am sure was related to the fact that almost everyone had a coffee cup in their hand).
The word spiritual came to mind as Owen and I watched people walking past us. No matter where we were coming from or going to, we were all experieicng that exact moment together.
I loved that Owen and I were experiencing this different start to our day together. Instead of being frustrated about my early rising child, we were releasing endorphins together and experiencing the world.
Although this may not happen this way every morning, on the mornings it does I will cherish them. Owen ensures that these types of mornings are a consistent possibility for the near future. And instead of being resentful that I am not still asleep, I hope to choose to get up and go.
I know once we are out there we will smile and be thankful for another day. And to make it even sweeter, I know there will be a cup of coffee waiting for me too, as long as I get up and go get it.