Sunday, May 1, 2011

Early Mornings

You know that old adage, early to bed, early to rise, makes a man healthy and wealthy and wise?  Or how about, the early bird catches the worm?  Well, I tend to agree with these sentiments but I can’t help thinking that maybe they were made up by farmers or parents of young children in an attempt to make themselves feel better about the fact that they are up feeding and tending to their critters and kids 7 days a week, 52 weeks a year!

Luckily for me, I tend to be a morning person naturally.  I can remember as a teenager, all my friends would boast about sleeping till noon on the weekends, and I couldn’t manage to make it past 9:00, no matter how late I’d been up.  This often frustrated me, but it also served me well during the summer of my 16th year when I landed a job as a groom and hotwalker at River Downs race track in Cincinnati – a job that required me to be at the barn at 5:30 a.m. EVERY day of the week.  And when my husband and I had our kids, the adjustment to those early morning awakenings wasn’t nearly as hard for us as for many of our friends since we were already pretty used to going to bed and getting up early.

So when we moved to our little farm and started accumulating our assortment and feathered and furry friends, the daily morning chore of getting up to feed them all around sun up wasn’t too hard.  There is a restful quietness about the place in those early morning hours that I find to be so peaceful and grounding that I hate to miss them.  Even when I’m really tired at first light, I somehow feel the urge to get up and start my day.  Some of my favorite things about being up early include:

~  hearing my little bantam rooster cock-a-doodle-dooing out in the barn yard
~  that first sip of my hot tea with a piece of warm toast and honey
~  watching the foothills behind our house turn bright, glowing red for a few brief moments as the sun comes up in the east
~  walking out in my pajamas and slippers to retrieve the morning paper
~  having some silent time to plan out my day before all the activity gets started

Now don’t get me wrong, there are some mornings when getting up early feels like a chore.  Certainly when I used to work in the corporate world, I dreaded my morning alarm clock and groused and complained every single day.  And if I’ve had a bad night of sleep, I’m pretty grumpy at first light.  But maybe because getting up to feed kids and animals every day is a reminder that I am living the life I always yearned for, I am generally a pretty happy camper.

My own teenage daughter could easily sleep till 10:00 or 11:00 and does so whenever she gets the chance.  But being a high school student AND a dairy goat owner doesn’t afford her very many opportunities to do that.  I’m always amazed at how hard it is for her to get up during the school week, but if we are going to a goat show, horse show or the best – getting up to go to the fairgrounds during county fair week  - she just hops out of bed and faces the early morning with energy and enthusiasm. 

Life Lesson:  How you face the day may be an indicator of the day you’re about to face!

1 comment:

Mindy said...

Aw Kate.. is your little Bantam rooster still around??