Wakening

By Ayla Nereo

I’ve found a rhythm lately of rising before the sun crests, to have an hour or so to myself before the busyness begins. The still and yet risen pre-sunrise time is by far my favorite time of day. Yet it is so easy for me to sleep right through it. There is that moment of decision each morning, remaining cozy and comfortable with where I am, or moving the dream-heavy limbs to meet the rising curtain of light. Reaching for awakeness.

So far, something I know about this little microcosm of experience, is that I have never, not once, regretted waking up.

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Many mornings I have to remind myself how glorious is the stillness, the sound of the birds’ first conversations, the delicate openness of thought available. On those mornings, when the bed feels especially enticing and eyelids extra heavy, it requires a summoning of a deeper commitment, to meet the childlike wonder of being awake in a dawning world, and to overcome the lethargy of limbs and mind that want to remain in the ease of the sleep state.

But when I choose it, and rise… the wonder of the day awaits me, and the sweetness of experience is itself a cord to encourage my future self, lethargic and sleepy in some moment to come, to rise and awaken.

There is more than one layer to this seemingly small act of choice each morning.

Amidst the fractal nature of this incredible universe, perhaps my rising signals a greater Carpe Diem to the cells in this body.

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And I listen. For the early hours hold blessings of spaciousness, when the collective psychic field of neighbors and town nearby is not yet in to-do-list overdrive and left-brain activity.

If I can become receptive within this quietness, the unknown insights are given an opportunity to arrive.  If I can make space and time for listening, then I am attempting to meet that which wants to come through.

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In our current political and mental climates of fast and highly-charged times, I’ve been really feeling how easy it is to just react to what is most immediately pulling at our attention — tasks and actions, emails, the commentary of ‘friends’ in an ever-widening virtual social space — and how I can forget to give even a little time to the nurturing of relationship with Soul.

If we are aiming for a life in which our creative Soul essence is leading, then this relationship is the most important part of our day, a higher priority than any item on our to-do list, and definitely higher than checking facebook.

For some reason this feels like a crazy radical idea, to actually give as much or more time to the soul’s calling than to other tasks that I feel pulled to attend to. And sometimes I can actually convince myself that there isn’t even space in my busy life for such a luxury as tending to my creative soul. But that space is always available. We just have to choose it.

We can’t wait passively for our creativity to show up. We must reach for it. Like all human relationships, we must carve out time and space to be together.

Perhaps it’s a walk alone in nature once a week with a notebook, ready to catch any words that want to come through. Or saying no to a party so that you can actually practice the instrument you’ve been wanting to learn. Or using moments alone in car rides to try out singing or speaking in a new voice. Or even waking up a half hour earlier than normal each day, to meet your creativity in that early morning spaciousness.

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More and more, I am questioning my beliefs around any kind of scarcity of time or space for doing what I love, and realizing that it is actually more about re-arranging time, and having a different orientation toward choosing what fills those spaces.

Two months ago I was dreaming about writing again. But my life felt so busy and full with touring, managing my business, answering emails, errands, to-do list’s, and all the life-bits that go along with homesteading on and stewarding land, that I had no idea how to fit another project in, even though my heart was calling for it.

But one day I simply committed to forcing my heavy eyelids open an hour and half earlier than I normally wake up.

And exhausted as I felt at first, within 5 minutes of putting on the tea and looking out the window at the electric blue-grey spectrum of light in that early dawn, I had forgotten all about being tired.

Because like all wonderful rendezvous with a beloved, there is a tingling energy of excitement about what might unfold when we meet our creative Soul.

In that magic of the unknown, all lethargy can simply vanish. And in the space that’s left over, we are ready to catch whatever wants to pour through.

When we choose how we are directing our life-force, giving ourselves to that which we truly love, and loving what we are giving to the world… perhaps then our actions become ripples, spreading out in wider and wider circles, able to touch the shorelines of another’s awareness. And not because we are trying to send a signal, but because our own love for life is a contagious wave that can catch others in wonder, leaving them marveling suddenly at the beauty of their own precious lives.

And if one day they choose to rise early to meet that muse calling to them, and the awe of what is born there creates a new ripple to radiate outwards and ignite the inspiration of others… well, I hope my toes may be lucky enough to feel the sweetness of that tide coming in.

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May your days be filled with choices that ignite your inner-light, more and more each moment.

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