Every day I wake up to a warm embrace and a wet nose from my youngest pup Jaz. She sits quietly next to my side of the bed first to see if I'll wake up and when I don't she jumps up to say good morning. This happens at four am every day.
This has been going on for at least a year now and I've grown used to it. Sometimes I even wake up moments before she does and I'll grab and hug her when she says hello. It has shifted my night time routine to going to bed earlier than I ever use to so that I still get roughly seven hours of sleep every night.
Rising, I feed the animals, pour my first cup of coffee and sit down in the silence of my living room to do my morning surf. While I know plenty of productivity experts would hate this, for me it works. I quickly know if anything pressing arose overnight and I catch up on what my friends are doing around the globe. Then I read through the New York Times and Apple News to be sure I'm updated on the day's headlines.
Lately, I've been thinking I should use the quiet time that follows more productively though. Perhaps I should go downstairs and throw a sandbag around or ruck a few miles on the treadmill. Maybe I should break out the laptop and work on my next book that has been boiling up to the surface over the last couple of weeks. The usual is to watch a documentary or whatever series I'm currently binging. (Loved the new Jack Ryan show by the way.)
The more I thought about it this morning, the more I realized that I needed the quiet morning hours of nothing in my recent past to balance out everything else that was going on in my life.
Today, things are more stable, prepared and organized. The chaos of last semester with new classes, lectures and day-to-day figuring things out at a new school have settled down into a new semester that has a solid foundation and I can build on top of rather than trying to clear the land and build at the same time. It feels good. It feels inspiring.
Mentally, I feel comfortable spending time and brain cycles on my art. Those things that give me deep seeded satisfaction, but might not give my family immediate support. Writing, photography and other creative outlets have long since been put on a shelf and only allowed out to play from time to time. Now, I want to take them down, dust them off and let my imagination run wild.
Stability is a new thing in my world and while we never know how long we'll have it for it is simply refreshing to have it at all.
My quiet moments are evolving. I like that.