Pre-pandemic, my alarm would wake me up at 5:00 a.m., insistently reminding me that it was time to get ready for my hour-long commute and the official start of my work day.
Each morning, there I’d be, snoozing comfortably, dreaming away, and then suddenly, a loud, irritating beep-beep-beep would jolt me awake. It would not stop until I took action. So, I’d hit the snooze button, putting off the inevitable, only to repeat the process all over again a few minutes later. Eventually, I’d accept reality and slowly exit the soft, warm bed, shuffle around in the early morning darkness, and get the day started.
Now, I rarely set my alarm clock. There’s no need; I’m not commuting, and the morning is no longer a rush of action I have to complete before hitting the road.
Instead, my waking up experience revolves around our dogs. Today, for example, I was awakened by Mollie and Charlie bouncing on the bed. They were playing some form of Dog Tag, with Mollie merrily pushing Charlie to one side and then Charlie gleefully jumping back across the blankets for another round. When they noticed that my eyes were open, they both bounded toward me with doggie smiles and wagging tails, eager to be the first to welcome me into the new day.
I miss my job. I miss seeing my colleagues every day, and I miss the work we did together, the sense of purpose it created.
I also resent the pandemic. I resent the lives it’s destroyed as well as all the interrupted plans and goals, the lost opportunities and disrupted expectations.
But, I do not miss that 5:00 a.m. alarm, and I do not resent the change in my morning routine. I much prefer being awakened at a more decent hour by happy, playful dogs who think I’m the most wonderful person in the world.
Here’s to little silver linings, wherever and whenever we may find them.