MITCHELL’S MUSINGS: Life is for the birds

As I get older I seem to treasure my sleep even more. I find myself going to bed earlier

As I get older I seem to treasure my sleep even more. I find myself going to bed earlier, hitting the snooze button a minimum of two times in the morning and just generally being more grateful for the restoring powers of lying in bed with my eyes closed for seven or eight consecutive hours.

Well, mostly consecutive anyway.

These days it’s not always as consecutive as I would like as one deals with factors like heat, the night sounds of all kinds, bodily requirements, one’s partner’s movements and, of course, how the mind tends to go to dark and mysterious places in the middle of the night.

I know that sleeping is a problem for many of us so I feel good about being quite good at it and most nights I get the required seven to eight hours that apparently Canadian adults are recommended to get. I don’t take that lightly and I’m grateful for it.

However, a recent addition to the neighbourhood has been cramping my blessed sleep pattern and I’m at a loss at how best to handle his or her presence in my life.

It usually occurs around 4:12 or 4:13 a.m. and it often rouses me enough to get me out of bed and go to the little boy’s room anyway.

So that’s OK on that level, but I don’t really need an alarm going off every morning like clockwork to tell me it may or may not be time to go the bathroom, thank you very much.

And it’s not like that’s what the message from outside my bedroom window is all about anyway, although my bird translation skills are somewhat limited by my own admission.

However, as I try to get back to sleep I do ponder what possible meanings this particular bird (admittedly I don’t know if it’s the same bird every morning but it helps to focus my frustration, so there) is trying to express at such a fevered pitch.

I’ve come up with at least five:

5. “Hey the sun’s up, time to get cracking on the day everybody.”

4. “Come on sleepyheads. I’ve already got two worms and you’re still sleeping you loser. Nananananana.”

3. “I can fly and you can’t and you think you’re the superior being? Nananananana.”

2. “You have to go to work in a few hours and I don’t. Nanananananana.”

1. “It’s a bird’s life and it sucks to be you.”

So, as you can see, the translations get more personal and vicious as I toss and turn, thinking it’s a conspiracy theory about keeping me from getting enough sleep, when in reality it’s truly a wonder of nature and the birds are communicating with themselves (not me), and possibly even expressing gratitude on the dawning of a fresh new day and all the possibilities that creates.

You know, how it’s great to be alive each and every day. I’m sure most of us could learn how to best greet the morning from our fine-feathered friends, summer or no summer.

Yeah, yeah, whatever.

I do think about getting up at 4:30 and seizing the day by launching my highly anticipated but never quite getting off the ground jogging program but I always fall asleep again before that potential miracle of a new day actually occurs.

I then wake up slightly an hour or so later and as I turn to catch another hour or so of shuteye I notice that the former fuss and frenzy in birdland outside my window has settled down to whatever goes for the routine of a daily life in the winged set.

Meanwhile I will continue to balance witnessing the wonders of nature with my need to sleep and consider actually closing the window on the early-morning antics of my newest neighbour.