I function best when I have a routine; or at least some semblance of a routine. I don’t necessarily need the routine to mimic the rigidness of say, Bikram Yoga where every step and sequence is the same time after time after twenty-six times and you know exactly what’s coming even before it comes. I’m not that kind of OCD. I’m more of an unpolished kind of OCD.
Being unpolishedly OCD means I at least attempt to start each day with a set plan. That set plan starts at 5:17AM. Every single day. The intention to stick to the list, be productive and get it done is the hierarchy of my strategy yet with the unpolished twist of accepting that what’s on the list might change and more notably the understanding of the high probability that things will at some point fall off course. It’s anyone’s bet not if but when the shit will hit the fan. I’m learning to be okay with the concept of shape-shifting according to what’s thrown my way as unpolished as it may be because it’s part of life and I’ve found it’s simply just easier to be more forgiving of it rather than fighting it. So even with the unexpected curveballs, I’m excited for the opportunity to start over each day and begin my routine again like clockwork at 5:17AM. 5:17AM is my favorite time of day!
6 REASONS WHY 5:17AM IS MY FAVORITE TIME OF THE DAY
6. I have choices. While some mornings my internal alarm is raring to go and beats the actual electronic ringer before it goes off, I can’t say I’m always thrilled when the blare of the buzz startles my body at 5:17AM. Those are the moments I’m grateful for the choice to hit snooze. Once, twice and even having a third time option to drift back to sleep for a few more minutes automatically makes me happy. The best choice is having choices. Just because I love the 5:17AM hour, doesn’t mean it comes without taking an unpolished minute or eight to get moving!
5. The coffeemaker is on my team. While most of the planet has switched over to single servings of Keurig, I’ve had the same coffee pot since 2003 (thanks Aunt Judy). This coffeemaker is tried and true and I know it’s true because it’s been tried every single day for seventeen years! Nightly, before I go to bed, the pot is set for the next morning at none other than 5:17AM. When my alarm goes off, so does old faithful. There’s nothing better than waking up to the smell of freshly brewed coffee even if it’s as early as 5:17AM. Is there?
4. Early bird gets the worm. Or so I choose to believe. I love feeling as if I’m part of a select group of people who like to get a jumpstart on their day. I’ve always admired those who view themselves as go-getters, hustlers, over-achievers and/or the movers and the shakers. 9.999 times out of 10, you’ll find individuals with these character traits are also up with the roosters in their own personal attempt to catch the worm. When the rest of the world sleeps, I love waking up amongst doers who too believe in the mindset that a brand new day can yield endless opportunities. An upside to starting the day at 5:17AM? You’re likely first in line before noon to beat the lunch rush!
3. Clean slate. Whether yesterday was the best or the worst day ever, it doesn’t matter. 5:17AM today marks the beginning of a brand new everything. It’s a fresh start. There’s no argument when you’ve got a clean slate.
2. Speaking of no argument…the house is screamingly quiet. At 5:17AM it’s too early for noise. There are no washing machines on (yet.) There are no clunking sounds coming from the dryer (yet.) There are no pots and pans being banged or protein shakes being blended (thanks again Aunt Judy for the blender!) There are no drawers or doors being slammed or basketballs from the pop-a-shot that’s somehow nestled in my living room being swished. There’s no ringing or dinging or whistle blowing and blinging. There are no teenaged boys screaming for someone [me] to bring them a clean towel or find them their favorite pair of shorts with pockets (which normally are three feet in front of them if they would just look!) There are no complaints (yet) about having to make their beds because it’s too early. It’s only 5:17AM and it’s my favorite time of the day.
The Number 1 Reason Why 5:17AM Is My Favorite Time Of Day Is Because My Kids…. are safely and soundly sleeping under my roof. At 5:17AM I know exactly where they are. At 5:17AM despite how quickly they’re growing up my heart feels and my eyes see nothing other than my two precious baby boys. At 5:17AM they can do no wrong! At 5:17AM I don’t have to text them repeatedly and hope they’ll text back in an appropriate time frame. At 5:17AM I don’t have to ask permission to enter their rooms.
At 5:17AM I can carefully crack the door open and peek in on the ones that continually give me the strength and energy to get up at 5:17AM every day and begin again. I’m reminded that while I don’t love the chaos, I love these kids more than pizza; so when I see the piles of dirty clothes on the floor or that same cup on the nightstand table I could have sworn I asked to be taken downstairs and put in the sink two days ago, I don’t flinch. At 5:17AM it’s too early to be mad or impatient or mildly disappointed.
Furthermore and oddly enough, at 5:17AM I admittedly don’t even mind the unique stenches ruminating from their individual rooms; each having separate but distinct scents which personalize them that otherwise would be offensive enough to gross me out later in the day! There’s no doubt around 9:30pm I’ve been known to whine aloud, “Ewww, it stinks in here. What is that!?” Instead at 5:17AM my mind morphs back to the days when the sweet smell of lavender and baby shampoo used to permeate through their scalps and skin. At 5:17AM I miss that. So at 5:17AM I take advantage of being able to get close enough to their sleeping faces and delicately rub the back of my hand against their soft cheeks. Then, as if I’m on autopilot from yesteryears, I wave my fingers under their mouths to feel warm air assuring myself they’re still breathing! At 5:17AM I know how grateful I am for the choice to wake up this early and check in on my sleeping beauties while privately marveling at who they are, how far they’ve come and all the many gifts and opportunities which await them in life. Don’t worry, I’m not foolish enough to think the feeling isn’t fleeting; I’m on guard the second their eyes open. Wired from already having had an entire pot of coffee, I’m now ready for the unpolished hell to break loose! “MAHMMMMMMM………..”
JUST TO LET YOU KNOW… I used to stay up late, religiously. I had an unpolished handle on all things night owl. I’m still open to playing into the wee hours of the night but only if the company is right; and if it is I look forward to what lurks behind and around dark corners. But for the most part, my yearning to consistently rise with the roosters and Carpe Diem it up supersedes the burning desire for the alternative. My love of waking at 5:17AM didn’t happen overnight; it took some practice. Last month, The New York Times published a great article by freelance writer Harry Guinness titled, A (Former) Night Owl’s Guide To Becoming A Morning Person. If you’re looking to convert your dark, unpolished nights into bright, seizing the day mornings, this article will help! CLICK THIS LINK to read and enjoy! And then if you wanna talk about it, feel free to call me. I’m up at 5:17AM!