There are many different ways to wake up. You can’t control them; they just are.
I liked the way I woke today. Normally, I wouldn’t have liked it because I woke up too early. When you wake up too early, it often means that you did not get enough sleep. Who wants to start a new day without enough sleep the night before?
People sleep different amounts of time each night. I know some people who can survive, and even thrive, on 4 hours of sleep a night or less. I don’t know how they do this. It seems not human. Can I trust these people? I normally need 8 hours.
Last night, I only got 7 but awoke completely satisfied. It’s the quantity versus quality issue. 7 quality hours beats 8 or 9 marginal hours every time.
I didn’t do anything out of the ordinary to produce this extraordinary night of sleep. I wish I had so that I could then do the same thing every other night before I go to sleep.
Some famous poet I remember from college (who can’t be that famous because I fail to recollect his name), began a poem “I wake to sleep and take my waking slow.” This morning, I know what his words mean more than I ever did back then.
Since I woke up earlier than normal, I got to “take my waking slow.” I woke, sleepily strolled into the kitchen, found the brand new, as yet unopened bag of Starbucks Columbian coffee, smelled that beautiful aroma, setup the coffee pot and started brewing. I took a look at the sunrise outside, made a pit-stop, and returned to find the coffee fully brewed. I added a bit of cream, poured the coffee, took the first sip and had thoughts of visiting Columbia, where this coffee was brewed. I then got back into bed to drink the coffee and continued my slow waking.
Most days, time does not afford us the luxury of waking slow. We wake up, hit the shower, grab a quick cup of coffee, jump in the car and head off to work. After we have worked a couple of hours, we might actually be awake. This is waking fast.
I was able to wake slowly today because I woke up early. I’ve tried to do this other days. I set the alarm for 1 ½ hours before I need to head out the door to enable me to wake slowly. This strategy always backfires. I end of snoozing for the full 1 ½ hours. I have then lost good sleep time and still have to hurry out the door to work.
There are moments in life that feel so good that we try to re-create them. For me, waking slowly, leisurely, comfortably is one of them. In setting the alarm early, I have tried to re-create this feeling but it never works. Like your first homerun, or your first kiss, the situation just can not be recreated. Expectation intervenes.
Since you cannot recreate these feel good moments, you just have to do one thing: Relish them when they happen!
Get your copy of his latest book entitled Obvious Conclusions, stories of a Midwestern emigrant influenced and corrupted by many years living in San Francisco and abroad. It just received its first outstanding review "...reminiscent of David Sedaris or Augusten Burroughs" on Amazon UK.