Wednesday, 22 June 2011

Morning Routine Daydreams

I've mentioned more than once my love for routine. But this is not just a love for routine; actually it is an obsession with and a fascination for the habitual quirks and commonplace actions that everyone implements somehow into their day. I would challenge anyone who said they lived completely without any sort of routine or ritual in their lives; routine sets pillars around this unruly and unpredictable chaos that is life, and even the most relaxed, disorganized or frivolous of folk must need some sort of line to follow through the days. Surely.

As far as routine goes, though, I am in the highest category of routinedness; I love the comfort of curling up into my predictable day, I love to know what is coming, and I love to know that the very best bits will come tomorrow, the day after, and the day after that. I don't have a cup of tea when I sit down at my desk every morning because I have to - I have it because I enjoy it, and thus am provided with that little bit of pleasure every weekday morning at 8:10am. As reliable as that.

During my walks along the canal back home from work this week I've been contemplating my ideal morning routine; how would my day begin, and what would be my priority for those quiet couple of hours in the early morning?

My day would start early - not as early as it does right now, but early enough to enjoy the still, quiet world before it is disturbed by noisy, colourful life. I'd wake at 6am, grab my running shorts and enjoy a steady jog by the river, not pushing or rushing but allowing myself to wake up steadily with my heart rate. When I get home I'd put on the kettle and head upstairs to have a quick shower, then, when clean and wrapped in a towel dressing gown, I'd sip a mug of hot lemon while making porridge and listening to the morning news. I'd sit together at the table with Daniel, planning the day ahead and discussing the evening to come, while eating porridge with banana, or maybe fruit salad with Greek yogurt. Then, after dressing and collecting together my things for the day, I'd head off to work, satisfied that the day had already been enjoyable and worthwhile.

I wonder when I'll be able to create some version of this in real life. In reality, my morning is as good as I'll get it right now, and in  many ways I enjoy the sleepy quietness that 5:15 brings. I like the way I echo around the house, which still feels soft and bleary from the night, and in some way is still existing in the night time as Daniel continues sleeping upstairs. I love leaving the house in the mist, smelling the new day before anyone else, before it has been filled with fumes and noise. I always say good morning to the newspaper delivery lady, who for a long while was only a voice in the darkness when we greeted each other in the snowy winter mornings last year. Now there are a handful of early-risers to greet every day; the man who sprints past me every morning, the mustachioed old man on a bike, the neighbour who is always chatting at the doorstep, the lady who runs with her beautiful Labrador. I'll miss the unlikely pleasures and the other early morning folk once I am relieved of this long, arduous commute, but the comfort of this routine is what enables me to go on enjoying my mornings each day, even when it's despicably early, when I'm too tired to brush my teeth without holding onto the sink, or when I'm just not ready for the day yet.


  1. Love this post. Both your ideal routine and your actual routine sound great, although it must be hard to rise at 5.15 am. I am a morning person, and my morning rituals are very important to me - they set the tone for the day. Hope you can change your working hours soon!

  2. lovely post....I was with you on the steady jog. Love that sleepy to awake transition, literally feeling your muscles wake up, get stronger as the run progresses....oh running! What would we do without it?