It’s 2:00 AM and I’m wide awake, typing on my blog. Either it’s the two day migraine that has kept me in bed that I’m finally recovering from, or the caffeine overload I had this afternoon between my Excedrin Migraine pills and my Rasberry Dr Pepper at The Soda Shop. Not sure…..maybe a combination of both? Hmmmm…..
I have always, as long as I can remember, been a night owl. I have always loved the quiet moments of the nighttime and dreaded the early darkness of the mornings. Sunsets have always been my favorite sight, especially a sunset on a beach somewhere. Most likely they are my favorites only because I can probably count on one hand the amount of real, live sunrises that I have seen in my days. Not kidding. One hand. Told you…….NOT a morning person!
There are only a few things in this life that have and could get me out of bed before the sun is up.
Number one will always and forever be……drumroll please………Disneyland! If the park opened at 6am, I would be there in the front of the line with bells on every, single time. Tired and grumpy by 5pm, but still kicking til they close at midnight to soak in every possible second I can at that glorious place on Earth!
Number two, the temple. Now this one was a brief, maybe slightly insane, moment in my life last year when I had a calling to volunteer in the baptistry and I signed up for the 4:45am shift. Yes, you read that right…..4:45 AM! I was there every week unless I had a sick child to stay home for or a migraine, which unfortunately I got quite frequently until they had to send me a certificate in the mail “Honorably Discharging” me from my calling (yes, I am very aware that was a very long run on sentence and I finally took a breath, so let’s keep going)….let’s talk about that for a second….did anyone else know they did that?! The temple presidency literally sent me a certificate in the mail telling me thank you for my time, but that I was being Honorably Discharged. I wasn’t sure if I should burn it out of embarrassment that I only lasted a whole five months, or if I should keep it to prove to myself that I tried really hard to get to the temple once a week at an absurd time of the day! I decided to keep it….proof for future generations and all that.
Moving on to number three, newborns. Let’s be honest, this one was more out of sense of motherhood and duty and obligation and all that, and not an actual choice. If given the choice, I would wish that all newborns came to earth sleeping for 12 hours every night for the first 12 months of their lives. I think all mothers would be much happier human beings and would recover a lot quicker, and maybe even have a lot more of the little
devils cuties if they just knew how to work their schedules around us. Why do they choose to sleep that long during the day instead? A mystery we will never solve I’m afraid.
There you have it in a nutshell…..three things that would get me up before the sun (or let’s get totally real, before 7am). I did get up at 4:30am every morning for four years in high school to attend 6am seminary and I’m very proud of myself for accomplishing that. Even though it still boggles my mind how I did it, I am proud of that certificate of graduation from early morning seminary.
I’m assuming that all you early birds feel this same way about the mornings, but there is just something so peaceful and serene about a still and quiet house with no noise from electronics or silly children. It breaks up my day and gives me time to reflect and relax and sometimes just literally “veg out” from the noise of the day. For someone that has suffered depression most of her life, being able to escape the “noise” in my head for even brief moments is heaven sent.
There is however a little something extra in these quiet, still moments. I have always been a huge believer and promoter of prayer. I have always felt a very strong, safe connection with God when I say my prayers. The last couple of years that has connection has been a little more interrupted than usual. The noise and “busy”ness of my days has made me so exhausted when I go to bed at night, that all I want to do is shut it all off and lay in the dark. Sometimes I say prayers on my knees, and other times I do not. I say a small prayer in my heart because I fear that my prayers have become monotonous. I don’t want to constantly be saying and asking for the same things. And when I run out of things to say, I just don’t say them at all. It’s a bitter cycle that never ends well.
However, I have realized recently that in these still, small moments when I am feeling unworthy of prayer, or feeling like my prayers just won’t leave my room, I still feel connected to my Savior. I know that in those quiet moments, He knows that is the only time that I am awake enough and quiet enough to listen. I know that my constant prayers for help and to be a better daughter to Him and better wife and mother are answered in those quiet moments. Those moments are full of clarity and love and promises of better tomorrows.
My midnight “conversations” with my Savior are usually just me listening while He floods my mind with ideas and beautiful thoughts that will get me through my days and help me get my children through their days. He floods my whole spirit with the promise that tomorrow will be better if I will just listen to Him and follow the promptings He is sending me. Those quiet times are just quiet enough, that I’m able to shut off the rest of the world and really feel Him. My only regret? That I didn’t listen sooner.
I have had these moments for years now, these late night promptings. I know my Savior has been showing me my path and showing me what it is He wants me to do. I know that He is guiding me and answering my prayers, but for so long I have “listened” with half an ear while trying to fall asleep. I haven’t done anything about it. I treated these promptings and “conversations” more like dreams. Or the nighttime equivalent of “daydreams” since it is midnight, but I’m still pretty much wide awake.
Until recently. I started to hear His words louder at the end of last year. I started to hear Him almost yelling to get my attention. He has been wanting me to really listen this whole time, and I have blown Him off. How many times do we do that in our lives? How many times to we put our wants and needs above the Savior’s wants and needs? How many times do we tune Him out so that we can try and work it out on our own, or because it’s not what we want to hear at the time?
I finally listened, and my life has changed. I am not perfect now. I don’t wake up at 5am yet , or wake up 100% happy and free from depression. I don’t wake up as the perfect mom, or the perfect wife, or the perfect friend. I still struggle every day. I still struggle with the “noise in my head” and the medical issues that keep me down many days. I struggle with my patience with my children and being extra attentive for my husband. I struggle. I am and will always be perfect at one thing…..imperfection.
I do however, for the first time in my life, have more of a sense of “who I am” and “where I am going”. I am finally stepping into the role (second only to motherhood) that I have waited my entire life for. I am living purposefully and intently and I am trying to get back my “muchness” (as the Mad Hatter so poetically reminded Alice that she had lost). I have acted on these promptings and have been richly blessed in so many ways for it already. Starting this blog has been so completely cathartic and therapeutic for me and is opening doors I never imagined possible. I am putting myself out there completely. I am owning who my Father in Heaven and my Savior want me to be, and with all the hope in my heart that He will take me “as I am and make me more than I ever imagined.”