Fyodor Dostoyevsky once said that man is an animal that can become accustomed to anything.
But who listens to that guy? His books don’t even have any dragons in them. Anything adapted into an HBO series there, Fido? Didn’t think so.
Take me, for example. Most of my life I’ve been a man for whom mornings were a concept. Much like the gut bacteria breaking down food in my intestine – certainly necessary for the day to day, but a process of which I needed no direct knowledge.
I chose my major in college in no small part because there were no classes before 10am. I certainly didn’t pursue a career in theater thinking I’d have to be anywhere before noon. And it worked out great for me. Those were, as they say, the salad days.
Maybe there’s a toddler out there who could get behind that kind of schedule, but he don’t live in my house.
Once naps ended and sleep settled into a pretty regular rhythm, little man was out for the count around 8pm (give or take) and rocking and rolling come 6 in the morning. And whether it’s a body slam, belly slap or tiny knees in my back, papa is roused at the same time as everybody else.
Now, in fairness, I usually can grab a quick nap after mama and little man get set up with videos and/or breakfast and get a second wake up maneuver around 8ish. But this is not the point.
The point is that I love my lady, and I love my son, and I treasure the time I get with them as he grows so quickly and childhood will end long before I’m ready.
I’ve been waking up at 6am for over 4 years now. And in that time I’ve grown accustomed to all sorts of unpleasant things: regularly handling another person’s urine and feces, perpetual joint pain, listening to wheels on the bus for hours at a time. I’m cool with all of this.
But I’ve been waking up at 6am. Almost every day. And I f#!*ing hate it.
But it’s just the waking up, is the thing. I’ve even grown to like mornings. But the transition, the throwing off the blankets and accepting that this is reality, not that place where I’m half-Japanese, half-Klingon. Doesn’t matter how many times I do it, I just can’t get used to it.
I have not grown accustomed to this, Mr. Dostoyevsky.