The first thing to emerge was my hand, reaching across the room to find my phone. 4:56 am. A little surge of success welled up inside me. Intercepting the alarm increases my ability to not wake the other sleeping people. As a 5 am riser, I’m the first in my household to awake, the movement from bed to desk a strategic mission of sorts.
Our house, a little brick bungalow built in the 1960’s, likes to talk as I walk through. There’s a particular snaking pattern I make along the floorboards; stay closer to the door of my bedroom, take it wide as I move past the boys. The pattern of maintaining silence.
Closing the door to the kitchen takes about 5 seconds; any faster and the door creaks; any slower and it catches in a way that’s loud enough to wake the smallest of sleeping ears and rouse them up.
I’ve spent many dollars on mugs, and yet the one I choose to drink from every morning is the cheapest one I’ve bought. A $2 mug from a discount shop that holds just the right amount of coffee and has the required size and feel. I’m selective about my mugs. The texture, the thickness of the rim, the roundness, and the shape. It all matters. It contributes to the experience and the taste.
I carry my mug, my notebook, and my book up the winding path to my office. To the human eye, I’m creeping. To the spider world, I’m an abomination. A whirlwind of destruction breaking the gentle threads of silk that have been woven overnight from plant to plant.
I sit on my chair and open my computer. Already, I feel like I’m behind. While everyone around me sleeps, I notice the descension of all the things. The writing wanting to be done, the sessions needing to be taught. The activities involved to mothering and being with the boys. The emails and the things, gathered in my stomach like a firm and solid rock.
But this morning, rebellion. I know this feeling. She and I have danced together many times. There’s a real and present tension between the life we are committed to and the patterns that present.
My pattern: Of overwork, of feeling like I can never do enough, like time is on the run.
The life I am committed to: Of noticing, of deep attention, of gratitude, of creativity. Of surrendering to the landscape around me and learning more about my place.
So, this morning, I dissent.
I take myself away from the computer and all the things. I throw a jacket over my pajamas and go outside. Through the long and thickening grass slightly wilting with the dew. Underneath the Manuka and Kanuka, their blossoming flowers appearing like sprinkled icing sugar on dark branches overnight. Through the gate and across the field to my horses, all standing in communion.
They wait together, doing nothing. View finding. They lick and chew. Peaceful. I stand and join them. And I remember to remember. These are the moments I live for. They dissolve the moments of angst and concern that are not real.
Soundbites of reconnection. Experiences of seeming nothingness that demonstrate the everything. Moments we must remember to take when it feels like have the least amount of time available to do so.
When the old patterns arise, I will dissent. When life convinces me, it is something to be endured rather than enjoyed, I will dissent.
And I will show up here, and I will write about it, as a reminder to those wanting to hold hands and do the same.