A Morning Writer

SunshineI am one of those awful morning people.  Or so I am told by those that aren’t morning people.  I don’t jump out of bed and start making noise and dancing and singing, but I wake up naturally two hours before sunrise, and I get up and do things.  I get up and get dressed and fix my hair and face, and face my day.  On weekdays, I head to my computer, read my email, post requested tweets, check the news, and waste time on facebook, all while drinking a bottle of water.  I might start a load of wash or fold a load of wash, then I fix my lunch, fix my breakfast, and head off to work.  On the weekends, I still wake up early, piddle around on my computer, do a few chores, and by 7 I am at my favorite coffee shop for two dedicated hours of writing before anyone else in the house is awake.

If this sounds boring, well, let’s just say I like my routines.  They keep me on track.  And I like mornings.  Mornings are quiet, filled with the promise of a new day.  A whole blank white board of time exists before me, and I can do many things with that time, if I want to.  I can also choose to do nothing with that time.

What I choose to do with that time is to be active, to knock things off the to-do list, and most importantly, write.  I am awake, feeling good, caffeinated, and ready to go.

I know there are people who can stay up all night, and prefer to sleep through golden dawns and promising mornings.  If I were to “sleep in” (which is actually impossible for me), I would feel like I wasted the most productive, and quietest, time of my day.  That morning time is when the chores don’t call as loud, when there is not such a push to meet a deadline.  It is my time to be productive.

I am often asked, “how do you become a morning person?”  I don’t think you can.  I think you are, or you aren’t.  I have been a morning person all of my life.  My mom talks about how she would want to sleep in on a Saturday, and she couldn’t, because 9 month old me was standing up in the crib singing morning songs to the sun that was pouring through my window.  I was not raised in the country, or on a farm, although my dad and his whole side of the family are rural farm people.  I am very much like him, though.  I cannot remember my father ever still being in bed when I got up in the morning.  He usually beat me by a good hour.  He’d already had his coffee, read the paper, and taken a wander around the yard to see if the moles had been active overnight.  I could tell you about the time he took his .22 pistol out into the yard one early morning and shot a mole that had made the mistake of showing himself above ground, but I’ll save that for another time.

I cannot imagine missing the sun coming up.  I cannot imagine sleeping until the sun is high in the sky.  In fact, I can’t imagine sleeping more than about six hours, either. The older I get, the less sleep I need.  I’m in bed by 11, but not always asleep, and awake at 4 a.m., regardless of how late I stayed up.  Sometimes that is a bit of a curse, but I still wouldn’t trade it for losing my daytime.

So what are you?  A morning person, or a night owl?  Tell me what you like about being either one!

8 thoughts on “A Morning Writer

  1. What a wonderful blog. I, too, am a morning person. I like getting up and having down time before the big, bad world kicks in. The silence. The quality of light. The promise of what the new day can be.

    • Thanks, MJ. That quality of light, the hour before sunrise and just bit after, is called “The Golden Hour” by photographers. Everything looks good by the light of the Golden Hour.

  2. Yay! Another morning person! Linking arms with you Susabelle. 🙂 I can’t imagine wasting the wee hours of the morn with sleep. I’m up at 5am and welcome the new day, though at this time of year, the stars are still winking at me from the sky. It’s my favorite part of the day. Loved hearing your story about your father. Sounds like something my own would do, too. Have a great weekend. Enjoy your writing morning.

    • Thanks for the comment, Mary. My dad is a character. I wouldn’t be who I am without him. 🙂 And about those winking stars…I live in Colorado, and even here where there is some light pollution (in town) the stars are still unbelievable. One day, I’m going to drive up to Rocky Mountain National Park either in the very early morning hours, or late (and sleep in my car) so I can see those stars from there.

  3. While I admire you early morning people, I am not, usually, among you. However, I have been enough times to know that a dawn looks full of promise, and the wonderful sounds of birds, fresh breezes, and the feeling of solitude as the rest of the world sleeps on. The air of expectation that hovers before the ‘life’ of the day begins. I’ve enjoyed those mornings. But they have not been my norm. During college, my best (and most) writing took place at night. As the years passed, that changed, so that now the later the hour gets, the less creative I am. But I still am not clear-headed really early in the morning. I grew up on a farm so I had to get up before dawn and do chores before getting ready for school and the bus. You’d think that would train me. Nope. There’s such mystery, lure of the unknown, and quest for answers and insight that come at night. The discovery of the ‘lost hour’ of the late night/early morning–the hour when time turns that crucial axis from night to day. In college during all-night study sessions, I labeled the hour between 2 a.m. and 3 a.m. as that time. Now, if I could just get by on a handful of hours sleep, I could enjoy both worlds. Unfortunately, I can’t. Susabelle, I enjoyed the story of your father. My family were all early risers, too. Although I can’t be one of them, I admire you all for being early AM creative!

    • Barbara, I know without a doubt that you are either born a morning person, or you aren’t. You can’t train it into yourself, no matter how hard you try. My dad was from rural roots, grew up on a farm, and I just figured that was why he was the way he was when I was a kid. But I know better now. It is the way he was born. I never stayed up all night, not one time in my entire life, not even in college. I just cannot do it. I’m like a pumpkin…at a certain point, I’m done. I’m no longer the beautiful carriage. haha. As for little sleep, I find it is kind of a blessing. I used to sleep more, but I haven’t now in probably 10 years. A 5 and a half or 6 hour night is about the norm for me. anything more than 6 and a half and I feel like a zombie!

  4. I’m not a morning person. I wasn’t born that way as you say. I struggle to function well before 9 or 10. But, strangely, I can write in the mornings. It’s like I am jumping from the dream state right into the creative state. Also, as I get older I don’t need nearly as much sleep.So sometimes I can get up at 5:30 or 6 and write for a couple of hours before I get ready for work. Interesting post, Susabelle.

    • Mary, I’ so glad I don’t need as much sleep. It really does free up my time for other things. And I think part of why you write well when you aren’t yet quite awake in the morning is that your inhibitions are a bit low, and you aren’t awake enough to hear the chores or whatever calling your name. I often write a lot more in the morning than I do at other times of the day, and I’m not really fully awake, even though I am out of bed and definitely a morning person.

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