Each morning is a chance to reinvent myself. The sun comes through the chipped windowpane and slices the floor. The cat warms herself in its heat. I open my eyes and stretch my body like a long elastic band. It's chilly, but I don't mind. Joe gets up before me and I can smell the coffee; it's brewed beans swirl through the air to my nose. I say hello to the morning. Welcome back, she says.
I make a choice. I don't pull the covers over my head. I embrace the sounds of the cars outside, their honking, the screech of tire to pavement. I embrace my bloat and my headache. I embrace the possibility of the workday, the new words I'll learn and the notes I'll write. I'll think of new lines for poems and hold them in my palm like a pen.
The morning is the great do-over. It is the flag that sails for non-surrender. Nothing is broken yet, not even me. And even if I was chipped the day before that, or the night before that there's nothing to stop me from putting those pieces back together again. There's nothing to stop me from pushing ahead and checking my email, of lining my lips with that cherry lipstick I bought last week. And there's nothing stopping me from fucking up and restarting again.
In the past, the morning was a scary place. It was dark and dim with sharp teeth. The morning was shallow and I was lost in its vastness. Possibility was scary. I was a person who would've rather stuck with the known than the unknown. I was a person who was weighed down by fears and what-ifs.
Though what changed me was not a single event, but a series of events. It was watching people in my life who remained stagnant and unflinching of change. Today I say to them, I am not available to go back to the past with you. I am in the stream of the morning. I am dedicated to the morning, to the promise of its forwardness, to the promise I've made to move forward.
The morning does not reside in the past. The morning is the promise of the future. I am a person of the future. I am a person who walks into the morning, who sleeps and wakes in the morning, who makes love in the morning. I am a person who vanishes, who relinquishes her soul to the morning.
I will no longer take the morning for granted because I know there is adventure in the unknown. I know now that there is beauty in awakenings. I know there is joy in the moment the open eye meets the sun and the air. There is joy in seeing my own ceiling hovering above me and knowing that is my ceiling.
I remember when I hated the day. I remember feeling alone in my long bed and wanting to be touched by someone. I could feel the emptiness of non-hands and the non-breath against my back. Those days were full of sadness and depression. I said no to that trembling nothingness. I said no to that urgency for desire and for someone to be in that bed with me and share the view of the ceiling. I hated that hollowness of solitude. I hated the periphery of the label "single." I wanted to be shared. Today, I say no to that loneliness and hold onto the solitude for fear it would be taken away from me. I love solitude.
I was trapped by my fear of the morning. I was trapped by my fear of new beginnings and new starts, of eggs popping on the frying pan, of poured juice and of all the little rejections that happen throughout the day. But now I say bring it on. I say to the morning: Give me all that I can bear. I will bear it. I say give me all the pain, all the love, all the good and the bad. I no longer fear the sun. I no longer feel the terror of the day.
I want to feel the morning on my skin. Let it jumpstart my re-invention. Let the cold or the warmth justify my existence. Let me feel my whole body, light or heavy on the thick mattress. I want it all. Every last bit to wreck me and connect me to the world both inside and outside of me.
Need help? In the U.S., call 1-800-273-8255 for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.