It’ll come as no surprise that I was up far beyond my bedtime yesterday. So far beyond, in fact, that I abandoned the notion of sleeping and decided to simply power through my classes and sleep afterwards. Not really the typical behavior for a sick person, I’ll grant you, but I prefer to blame my diseased state for my abnormal sleeping pattern (this time anyway). But I had a bit of a check on my perception in doing so. I was watching a movie and eating ice cream when I began noticing a few people walking by or looking down the hallway to notice people leaving the building around 5:30 or 6:00.
I was flabbergasted. I know that’s not any abnormal information to some people, but to me it was really bizarre. I’ve spent my most recent years staying up and waking up late, so when I encountered other people so early in the morning I had no other thought than, “You should be asleep! Why are you awake?” I’d completely forgotten that there are people out there who are the complete opposite of me in that way; people who go to sleep early and wake up early. It took me at least three people dressed in athletic clothing to realize that they were probably going to the gym for a morning workout or going outside for a morning run before class and breakfast and stuff. Basically, I forgot morning people existed. I’m baffled by people who elect to wake up that early in the same way many are baffle by my choice to stay up that late.
Running on this train of thought for the rest of the movie (Tammy for those who care to know), I began to encounter one of my favorite things. Can you guess it before I mention it? If you’ve read many of my posts, it’s a pretty common thing I bring up. I’ll give you a little more buffer room before I reveal it. Go ahead and guess. Okay, the sky started turning from black to blue and the light started to come out. Sunrise. That’s what happened. I still can’t describe how great I feel watching the world wake up (ironically right before I’m usually falling asleep). But this time was just a little different because I don’t think I’ve done this much in Utah, especially not where I continue to stay awake instead of going to sleep. I saw more and more people starting to come out of their rooms and drive their cars to class or work or wherever. The streets and hills started to light up as the sun rose over the mountain. I got to witness what felt to me like the world opening its eyes, yawning, and stretching its arms and legs. This happens at every moment somewhere on the planet, but the opportunity to watch it for yourself as an “outsider” doesn’t come very often.
The day felt bizarre too. You know those days where there’s sunlight but the sky is dark gray? It just recently rained and you can tell it’s going to rain again, but for a moment the sun is out amidst the vast gray clouds. Those are my favorite kinds of days. I feel rejuvenated by both the sun and the rain, so I felt like I was on another plane of existence. No, I wasn’t on drugs (except my cold/flu medicine), but then again I was pretty sleep deprived by that point. Add into the mix a few good songs while waiting for class or walking to class and I consider that the perfect start to a morning. Some philosophy/transcendentalism, good music, perfect weather, a night of friends and fun,, and a KILLER episode of The Walking Dead. For me, it doesn’t get a whole lot better. Maybe being a morning person isn’t so bad.
All this is to say I was exposed to a side of the world I don’t usually get to see even though I love it. It reminded how large the world is and how small I am, but that there’s beauty in everything. Every day we have the opportunity to look at the world differently and choose what we do with our lives and how we interact with others. When the world wakes up, it can feel like it’s just another day and the same routine: get up, eat breakfast, go to school or work or class, go to the gym, eat dinner, watch TV, go to sleep. Even if you do follow a routine, the world is amazingly diverse. You’ll never live the exact same day no matter how familiar it feels. You’ll never see the exact same people in the exact same place at the same time talking about the same things twice. Every day really is a new opportunity and you and I waste them more times than not. It doesn’t take anything large to change your life. You don’t have to go on a life changing retreat to see yourself and your life in a brand new way. Of course it’s easier said than done, but it will be my prayer to see my day in a new light and then act on that sight. I will pray that my day and yours will never be settling for the minimum, but looking for every opportunity to talk to new people and make the most of every day we’re given.