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Rise and Shine, Life is Good

By Special to the Sentinel

Post by Randee Bergen www.randeebergen.wordpress.com

My brother recently posted this Life is Good picture on my Facebook wall. “From one morning person to another,” were the unwritten words, “ with love and understanding.”

When I was a kid, my mom would call my name tenderly from the kitchen, as she went about her business, and I would pop out of bed, instantly awake, straightening the sheets and covers behind me. As an adult—despite working full-time and being a (practically) single mother of two kids who are 17 months apart—I have been up at 4:30 a.m. five mornings out of seven, for nearly two decades, to exercise or get caught up on work or household chores. And, believe it or not, I didn’t experiment with the snooze button on the alarm clock until I was in my forties. I don’t know what finally possessed me. My significant other tells me that I should have been a firefighter because I can be up and ready to go in just a few minutes.

But I prefer to take my time and ease into the morning. The alarm beeps at 4:30 so I have plenty of time to get ready, have a Diet Coke and some breakfast, and take a look at the newspaper or get online. Yes, I drink Diet Coke and not coffee and yes, I eat at 4:45 a.m. and then, most days, have a second breakfast around 7:00.

So, yeah, I’d say I’m a morning person. That early hour, 4:30 to 5:30, is my time. It was the only hour I had to myself for a decade worth of days when the girls were young. I wouldn’t miss it, or sleep through it, for very many reasons. Now that the daughters are teens, I have more time for myself, but the early morning is the only guaranteed time for me. Life wakes up soon after and starts demanding all of my time and energy.

This is true in the summer, too, albeit, being a teacher, it seems I could get up whenever I desire. Still, most days, I choose 4:30 and exercise while it’s still cool. I’ll take a nap later if I need to. Napping is not, of course, an option during the school year and so I must be in bed by 8:00 or so every night.

Whatever I end up doing, I’m usually done by the time most people are waking up to start their day. And I fall right into the rhythm then of a typical morning—shower, spend time with the girls, have my (second) breakfast, and, if school is in session, be on my merry way to teach.

I like to think that I’m adding time to each day, to my life. But probably not, once I've added in the naps and having to go to bed earlier. Still, though I may not actually gain time, I know, as a result of the exercise, that I have more energy to commit to each day. And because I wake with an attitude of wanting to be up to take advantage of this hour, I’m sure I am more passionate about life and more appreciative of the inestimability of time than I may otherwise be. And this is why it makes sense to me to wake so early. Because life is good. Every hour of it.

Rise and shine.



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Wow, that is so NOT me. I love to sleep, and sleep, and sleep. If it weren’t for my kids, I’d never get up before 7. Enjoy the early morning, all by yourself!

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