I rolled over to see a worried face. "Are you alright?" Joe asked. "Um, yeah," I said barely conscious. It seems that, last night, I slept right through only getting up to pee and coming straight back. My normal routine is to be up somewhere between 3 and four to write this blog, then play a game or two, then go back for a catnap before the day starts. I never, well I guess now I need to say, I almost never, sleep in. I smile even saying that because 7:40 is hardly slothful, even so, I've slept in.
This came about because of an active decision. I was up, per normal, for my 'I'm 57, so I heartily Thank God this pee is in the toilet' pee. From the bathroom I usually veer into the office. My housecoat is draped over my wheelchair waiting me. I stood there and thought about it. I was called to get up, I was called to go back to bed. I'm very disciplined when it comes to the blog, to writing and to fulfilling my duties. I stood there thinking about dedication and suddenly thought, 'Screw it.' Seconds later I was back in bed, a few minutes after that I was snoring.
After waking, and before getting up to write, Joe turned on his light to read the book he is slogging through. I've read it. It's a tough read. (Anyone else read Drood?) I said to him, if you aren't enjoying it, put it aside, read something else. This kind of shocked both of us. We tend to finish books we start and seldom ever just stop one we aren't enjoying.
It seems, I've realized, this New Years, that we've surrounded ourselves with rules that don't matter. Who says that blogs need to be up and ready for people between 4 and 5. It's a blog. It's a personal choice. I choose to write daily. But the word choice has come to mean 'must'. The essence of choice had been lost. I got up this morning and there wasn't a single email saying 'OH MY GOD YOU DIDN'T PUBLISH THIS MORNING BETWEEN 3 AND 4 - MY LIFE HAS GONE OFF THE RAILS". I daresay only a few noticed (and I know them all by name! us early risers are like a club. we know who else is up when we are) and those that noticed didn't really care.
Dan Simmons isn't going to come aknocking at our door to demand why Joe didn't finish the book. No one will ever know and those that do will be thinking, 'You have A RULE about reading books?' Well, until now, we kinda do. It strikes me that we have made a number of silly rules about how to live our lives. Some of them are important, things to do with character and integrity. Surely there are lines I will not cross, rules I will not break, because they speak to who I am and what I believe.
Nonsense rules need to be challenged. I'm going to practice this here at home and then begin to take them on in the real world. I want to end the tyranny of 'because that's the way we do it' and enter the utter chaos of 'because that's what I decided in this moment.' I've always fought against tyranny and tyrants, now it's time to take on the ones in my life and in my head.