This morning I got up before 6AM. This is the first day of me beginning a new regime.
Last Friday, as evidenced by my last post, after I’d finished setting up my new computer and downloading all my old files and photos, I suddenly saw my life here in Chicago with fresh eyes. I was able to really think about the last year and things I’ve done and the ways in which I’ve changed.
And I realized that I’m not that satisfied.
I know, I know…that might sound whiny and I don’t mean it to be. I’m so incredibly grateful for my life, for the people in it, for the work I do, for the beautiful home I live in and the trees outside the kitchen windows.
But for the past few weeks I’ve been waking up and feeling quite uninspired. I’ve been waking up and wishing I could just go back to sleep. And since I can’t, and since I have to get up, I usually lay there for ten minutes or so thinking about the day that lies before me, about the things I’ll do, the rooms I’ll walk through, the people I’ll talk to.
And while all of it seems pleasant and fairly easy, none of it feels particularly inspiring. None of it makes me want to spring out of bed, to get a start on my day. None of it gives me butterflies of anticipation.
And that alone makes me feel even a little more deflated.
Last Friday I spent some time really thinking about this feeling, this feeling of blah, of nothingness, of lacksadaisical forward movement. And I thought about it most of all in comparison to a year ago.
A year ago I was in LA just beginning work on my book. I was living alone in my little apartment by the beach and I was finishing my last quarter of grad school. I was seeing clients in two different clinics and I was going to yoga several times a week.
This morning, sitting on the couch at 6AM, drinking hot water with lemon and trying not to fall back asleep, I read through an old journal that took place during that time. I came across an entry that I wrote almost a year ago, in which I had scrawled, "I realized the other day that I’m doing everything I always wanted to be doing. For the first time in a long time, perhaps ever, I’m not doing anything I don’t want to be doing. I’m actually living my dream."
Wow, to have ever written something like that, to have experienced that time, even just once, is, I think, a gift. And I want it back.
And I know that so much of it has to do with frame of mind. So fine. I want that back too.
And so, last Friday and all through the weekend, I thought about it. I pondered what it is that I need to do to, again, attain such a level of living. And the thing I realized is that I’m not working towards anything big. I’ve been here in Chicago for almost 8 months and it’s been a huge transition — moving here was, in itself, something big.
But now I’m here and I’m settled. I have a great job and lots of friends. Greg and I are better than ever and living in a beautiful home together. Finances are totally under control. Spring is here. I’m healthy and grateful. I’m freelancing all the time, have a whole pile of little magazine articles I’m working on. We’ve got fun trips planned and visitors coming. Summer is almost here…
…and so what’s next? I can’t just coast through my days, everything being kind of pleasant and easy. I need something that drives me to get out of bed in the morning.
Hence, the waking up at 6AM plan. I’m going to start a new writing project. I’m not sure what shape it will take. I’m going to initially go back to the book I wrote last year and begin reworking it. And if that doesn’t feel right then I’ll begin something new.
I’m also going to incorporate a lot more yoga and meditation into my days.
This morning at 6AM, I didn’t want to get out of bed. It was still kind of dark out and I was tired from working all weekend and I lay there thinking about my forthcoming day and what I would do if I did get out of bed right then and what it would be like if I didn’t until it was time to get ready for work.
And I realized that I don’t want my days to be the same anymore. I don’t want to feel heavy getting out of bed in the morning. I want to feel inspired and excited. And if that takes work and if it takes making myself get up at 6AM every morning then so be it.
I’m ready for a new season.