(Unfinished Ramble 3) Ring Thee Alarm

 

Written on September 20, 2015

6:14 is the time my alarm goes off on weekdays. It’s an interesting time and I’m not sure why I chose it but it allows me enough time to do what I need to do and be where I need to be each day.

My life wasn’t always so structured. My days rarely began with the sound of an alarm clock for most of my adult life. Not since high school in Brooklyn did I need a sound to wake me up at a particular time so I could be somewhere. In college, my classes began late and once I graduated I would sleep late because I was usually up late every night. I was either in someone’s studio, at a party, or I was up writing songs with the hopes that those writings would put me in a place that I would never need an alarm clock again.

That part of my life lasted over a decade. It took me almost six years to land an elusive record deal that would satisfy my childhood dream.

Then it took me two years to place my career in a stupor, and my world in a depressed state that would not be relieved until I left the city of New York altogether. Leaving my city of birth actually saddened me more because I felt like the alarm clock life was coming. I smelled it; I assumed people wanted it for me, my mother foreshadowed it, my girl mildly advised it at times, I knew they were correct but I fought it off…until…

Until one day I was waking up at 6:14. Some days I would be upset; I used to get pissed when I hit the snooze button and mad that I was up an hour earlier due to a dream about urination that could have ended really horribly. I would even get down on myself for wasting my talent and not being rich enough to not need this alarm clock. All of that subsided one morning when I just decided to smile after my eyes opened. I was tired, groggy, my allergies were affecting me and I could envision just falling back in the bed without a care, but all I could do was smile.

Not some corny, cliche, “I’m happy to be alive” smile. But I honestly envision people that can’t walk, can’t stand, can’t breathe on their own, and aren’t here in the physical form. I’m not luckier than any of them, I’m not better off than anyone, I’m simply grateful for where I am and what I’ve gone through in my life. There were days when I woke up and got out of bed whenever I felt like it, and I was just as happy and excited to chase my dream. Although I have never been financially free, I have experienced moments where I’ve been somewhat stable and adversely there have been others where I’ve been close to the bottom.

So yes there are times when I view my world as imperfect but that doesn’t alter the fact that when I wake up and that alarm goes off, and I decline the snooze button regardless of how much sleep I accumulated over the night, I am excited.

I am elated that I have a place to be, or some days nothing to do at all. But I always have humans that depend on me for guidance, leadership, communication and most of all; love.

I do believe that for a large part of my adult life I was more focused on where I didn’t want to be as opposed to where I wanted to be. And where I didn’t want to be was working for someone else, and doing something I didn’t love to feed myself and my family. I didn’t want to need an alarm clock because I wanted to “own my day.” So I asked myself the other morning, do I own my day?

And if I don’t, what does that mean?

 

I stopped right there.

 

 

Fast forward to the present day and it’s 2018. Reading this post, I am absolutely thankful for my experiences that led me to this point. It’s interesting because sometimes I tell myself that I do own my day. I make choices every day that lead me to help others. I don’t have a job working for a company and I don’t create music all day to generate enough income to live comfortably. My days do include reporting at a location and I am held accountable for certain responsibilities to earn a salary. The words “set salary” were poisonous to me in my twenties. The 24-year-old version of myself is not happy about my daily decisions to be at a school each day. But the 40-year-old writer, provider, coach, husband, and father, is completely in love with this life. He still has moments where he’d rather be traveling to different countries instead of following a rigid regimen; he also drifts off to imagining hanging with his wife and son during times when obligations tie us down. But there is still a feeling that I called this life forth and at any time I can change what I don’t love.

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