I am up at first light. I’ve been dreaming of bathrooms, toilets open to the view of anyone who passes by. My dreams become my alarm clock, waking me to insistent urges no matter how hard I try to remain in my warm, cozy bed.
I take care of the necessary and stumble, still half asleep, toward the oasis of my mornings; the coffee pot. Fortified by the warmth of that first cup, I hold it with both hands. The heat glows down into the joints of my fingers and loosens the stiffness I struggle with each day. My eyes slowly clear and I become a more coherent version of me.
My husband is out on the porch swing enjoying his first cigarette of the day and the coffee he prepared before I got up. This is his alone time, his time to think, to worry, to talk with the neighbor that comes over to join him on the swing. They chat about this and that, enjoying their smokes and the morning.
He turns on the television before he goes outside, listening to the weather, the traffic, the latest shooting report. It stays on for the rest of the day unless I turn it off. I reach for the remote and mute the noise. I need the quiet to gather my thoughts, to pray, to find the energy it will take to get through the time I must pass until I can lose myself in sleep once again.
He comes in through the back door and begins to tell me what has been on his mind today. We talk through life during these mornings. We reminisce about the children, the grandchildren and our lives together. We talk through problems, finances, everything we need to do that day.
We connect. And in that connection, our lives become not just the two of us, but one. One mind, one strength, one purpose, one united front against all the problems we will face today. Two hearts joined as one.
I rise from my chair and hand him the remote. As I go upstairs to get ready for work I hear the weather report playing in the background.
It’s going to be another sunny day.