Some mornings, many actually, it is really hard to get out of bed. When the nights are rough, and the sleep does not come after I have woken late in the night, or when it ends too early, that alarm is a brutal slap, and I just want to cushion myself against it. I bury my head under the covers. I know I should get up and exercise or eat a decent breakfast, but lately I am lucky if I get up a half hour before I have to go. If I take the Benedryl, it is worse, if I don’t the day is horrible. I trudge through unable to lift my feet, eyes need super glue to stay open, if I sleep in just a little more, until I wake on my own, a mere hour most days, I am fine.
Today was one of the worst, I woke at three worrying about my daughter’s insurance coverage, worrying about gearing up to sell the house, worrying about the dog getting old, and sometime around 530 I fell asleep. The alarm went off at 6. No. No. No. No. No. I hit the snooze again and again. I tell myself that I should be trying to figure out what else I should be doing, not teaching, it is killing me, it is so stressful sometimes. Sometimes I tell myself that I suck at it too. Imperfect lesson plans, disorganized, and sometimes cranky.
Last week the assignment was to write about your hero. I told them the story of my second daughter, the eyes of one girl an echo of my words. Another asked questions that only had knowledge and understanding behind them. The boy whose father died, crying on my shoulder, my dad is my hero.
She walked up to me and placed a folded sheet of lined paper in my hands, turned and walked away. I opened it.
“Dear Ms. Gregory,
You are my hero. When you were telling us about your hero T__, I realized at that moment that you are a hero. You are an intelligent woman and you are very beautiful. Thank you for being my hero.”
Teary eyed, I understand why I got out of bed this morning.
As the day progresses, I understand why the husband left me. Not in the sense of actually understanding why he was such a selfish asshole, but in understanding what it meant to my life. What a gift it was.
As the day ends, with my pirate, wrapping his arms around me and kissing the top of my head, the dinner he made in my belly, and in a container for my lunch tomorrow, my cold feet still toasty from the hot tub, I feel content. And I realize that despite my waffling, despite my sometimes worry that he will leave me too, that he is a gift to my life.
I know why I will get out of bed tomorrow. Even if I don’t sleep well.