Monday, April 22, 2013

Late Bloomers


 *Twila, you were the first to comment and you won the book giveaway. Does that ever happen? Well, it did!*

 I love to see nature wake up in the spring. Tiny buds and shoots, seedlings and dew. New life springing from slumber.

Speaking of slumber, have you heard about the "early wake up" movement? There's an enterprise afoot in the domestic blog world aimed at motivating the mom-masses to add more value to their day by getting up before the rest of the household. This is so you can, ostensibly, get more things done and maybe have some quality time to yourself. I think this is a great idea if you are a naturally inclined morning person, but for us night owls it just won't work. It's merely chopping one end of the blanket off and sewing it back on the other end. If I'm getting up at 5 in the morning, it better be to milk a cow or run from a house fire. Also, if your family is like mine, then getting up at 6 means everyone is up and following you around by 6:05.

Oh, I know some unfortunate souls have husbands who leave for work at dawn and school start times that are alarmingly early so they have to do this. But I don't. I can be a moonflower.

Not to point fingers, but it reminds me of many of the one-size-fits-all solutions floating around in the domestisphere. I once read an article that promised to help you, as a busy mother, find more time to write. It made me anxious for a second because I was hoping she found a loophole in the universe and, aided by a time machine, was going to tell me how to get more hours out of my day. That is the only way I could find more time to write, and frankly the extra time probably wouldn't go towards writing. It would go towards flossing my teeth or eating chocolate or something else important.

After reading half a dozen tips which are already part of my routine, it came down to the big one: The writer has her husband watch the kids for four hours one night a week, while she takes the laptop and absconds into the cloistered security of a Starbucks. And that, THAT, was really how she found time to write. Four uninterrupted hours of quiet, courtesy of her spouse.

I imagined what the conversation would look like if I informed The Mister that I needed a few hours of alone time in the evening at a coffee shop. Well, I tried to imagine, but such a conversation would require just a little too much imagination.

"Would you mind being me for a few hours while I hole up in a cafe with the computer? It's important. I need to write a blog post. A dozen people are counting on me. No, really. I'll be back by ten. Thanks."

I'd like to propose a counter-movement which is synced harmoniously to the natural rhythms of us late night bloomers. One where we shamelessly stay up late after everyone has gone to bed and do whatever we want to get more out of our day. Mop the floor. Read the news headlines. Play solitaire. Embrace the pervasive and soothing quiet of a word at sleep.

From time to time I'll issue a cheer. "Who woke up to perfectly clean floors this morning? Who went to sleep when the clock said a.m.? Who is going to need an espresso as big as their head to get going today?" That's my movement. Those are my people. We'll bloom where we're planted, and when it suits us.

A ranunculus from my garden. An early spring bloomer.


  1. YES!!!!! Kindred spirits, you and I!... and at least one other who will probably post sometime tonight!

  2. I know who she's talking about! And just so you know, I WOULD be vacuuming my rugs here at 1 AM, if not for the fact that I would awaken the Old Bald One!

  3. Wow, I'm thrilled! I love books, and this looked like a good one. For some reason when I click on the link to contact you, my computer won't connect to it. I'll give you my e-mail, and if you'll e-mail me I'll reply with my address. Thanks!

  4. A movement to get up early?? People just aren't happy unless others do things just like they do, you know that. Spare me. If there's a movement, it should be to get 5 minutes to yourself when it works for YOU - be it early morning, late night, lunchtime... Two out of my three kids are night owls and that's when they function the best for studying, going out, and sometimes even working. My brain won't function past 9 p.m. and that works for me, but I bet you're just warming up then. I say good for you - grab that time when you can get it, it gives you more time for emails and the important things like that. :)

    By the way that ranunculus is redonkulous - SO beautiful!! And I love that color.

  5. Your ranunculus is beautiful...such a delicate of my favorites....blessings

  6. I was part of Hello Mornings which was supposed to motivate me to go to bed early, get up early, exercise and have devotions early (first thing before the rest of the family was roused) but I was a failure. :( I would rather sleep in, then do the work I need to, stay up until it is done or my system crashes and go back to bed. Sounds like a plan to me...... For studying I did best during the late evening when the house was quiet.
    Great post.
    When's your next contest? I've never won a drawing. HA! (Couldn't resist, the kid in me likes to win)

  7. Oh, how BLESSED I was to read of ANOTHER night owl! I love the idea of being a "moonflower:" I should let my husband know of my new self-proscribed nickname! This post SO CHEERFULLY resonated with me....Thank you, sister!

  8. Monica, you are too funny! I love your sense of humor... especially the line about milking a cow or running from a house fire! I was LOL all by myself!

    Like many others, I am right with you about being a moonflower. And don't you somehow feel like it's more virtuous and good to be a morning person? Maybe it's being married to a morning person, but I always feel like an undisciplined slug when I go to bed after the clock strikes midnight and get up sometime after 9:00.

    I remember before I became a published author I would go hear writer's talk about what their writing process. Almost inevitably, they would talk about getting up about the time I like to go to bed and write before their day began. There would be this sinking feeling that I would never make it as a published author and I'd groan inwardly.

    Moonflowers know what a great feeling it is to be completely alone in the quiet and dark of the night. Maybe owls are wise for a reason.

    Thanks for sharing this great post.


  9. As a (temporarily) reformed night owl, I am looking forward to a time when I will once again enjoy the music of the night. However, for now I am a reluctant morning glory taking advantage of the short few minutes between wake ups and leaving for school. Those mornings keep me anchored and are a daily reminder of four blessings... Of course then the blessings start to trade barbs and other veiled one-upmansios and I am suddenly thinking about the after mindight quiet.

  10. I love this post. Love it.

    Thank you for a chuckle at the front end of the blanket. :D


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