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I Guess I’m A Morning Person Now?

For decades, I just wasn't into the mornings. Mornings made me cranky and irritable, and I hated being up before 8AM but I had to because of work and then kids. The kids knew not to bug Mommy for anything before 8AM. I coasted through on auto-pilot. Breakfast, pack lunches, drink tea. NO THINKING. Everything needed to just be ready to go.

I never write in the mornings. I hear from other authors that they get up at 5AM, write, and then they're done with their work by the time the rest of the house is up. This was (and still is) completely unthinkable to me. Write while in a zombie state? I remember trying it once and I literally just stared at my computer for 30 minutes before giving up and going back to bed. Lol.

But something has happened in the last few years. My body no longer wants to sleep well past 4:30AM. Somewhere around that time, I start tossing and turning. My sleep becomes really light, and I might get some dreaming done, but I'm usually awake on a weekday by 6AM and out of bed 30 minutes later. I attribute this to Dawn Phenomenon, which when your body releases stored glycogen/blood sugar in order to wake you and get you ready for the day. I appear to be very insulin resistant, so this phenomenon is almost instantaneous for me, when for other people, it's not as abrupt. Also, I'm now in my mid-40s which means that menopause is coming, probably early for me since it tends to hit women in my family earlier than others.

I'm doing a lot in the mornings now but still no writing. Editing, yes. Writing, no. We'll see if that changes over the next few months. But for now, my routine is to get up, empty the dishwasher, feed Lulu, start breakfast for the kids (they usually finish the making), sit down to do Wordle and Duolingo with tea, exercise and/or go grocery shopping. Yesterday, I was at Whole Foods by 8:15AM and home before 9AM. Then I took Lulu out for a walk and finished up my exercise for the day.

I've changed my sleeping schedule to accommodate this. On Tuesday nights, I go to bed early. It's a ritual now. I'm in bed by 9:30PM and lights out to front-load sleep. This is the only way I get more hours of sleep now. Because my body says, “Hey! It's 4:30. YOU KNOW YOU WANT TO WAKE UP!” I beg to differ.

I guess I'm a morning person now? Yeah. It appears so. I suppose one day I'll be up making coffee at 4:30AM like my parents and in bed by 7:30PM? I wonder what the future holds for me.

S. J. Pajonas