Consider the Donut
Around 4:00 a.m. is usually when I open my eyes and start to grapple with that particular day's logistics. It's also when I realize that I've been sleeping in a subhuman allotment of space thanks to the two sticky, sprawled bodies that migrated into my room throughout the night. That I've managed to stay in the bed at all defies physics and logic. It also makes me wonder if even when I'm "sleeping" I'm alert enough to balance my body on the the knife's edge of space I'm slowly relegated to by my invaders (conquerers?).
A quick mental scroll of the day's schedule reveals no major obstacles. When the minutiae provides nothing to grapple with, my mind begins to poke around the problems that I keep on the figurative higher shelves. Like a naughty child it leaps up, pulls them down so that they fall messily exposed on the floor all around me: budgets, summer child care, flabby thighs, broken lawn mowers...I wish I could go back to sleep. I try. But up there even higher up my mind spots more stuff to play with: my career, our future...why did I go back to school? What if my son never learns how to ride a bike? We slowly reach peak existential crisis: What if this is it? This treadmill? This is life?
My body feels exhausted and I wonder if it's because I never really sleep, but am perpetually balancing on the edge of a knife, literally and figuratively. Its now around 5:30 a.m. and I do the one thing I probably shouldn't do: I pick up my phone and begin to scroll. Happy people with perfect lives; Sad people with tragic lives; Beautiful places I won't be able to travel to anytime soon; Natural disasters; Political disasters. Donuts. Donuts. Donuts. Apparently its international donut day. I can swing donuts.
We get up, put shoes on and are back on the couch before 6:30 a.m. with six beautiful donuts. Everyone is happy in that moment due to that our strange little early morning donut diversion. I eat one and consider my flabby thighs. Then I consider a second donut. I take a big bite of an old fashioned and hope that tomorrow I sleep later, worry less and maintain perspective. Or that it's at least international apple day. I can swing apples.
Get dressed. School drop off. Life. Repeat.