I do not look at the clock. Growing up I would look at the time when I woke up mid-sleep, relishing it if I had even 30 minutes before my alarm. If it was only three in the morning, I was strangely psyched. More sleep! More sleep! These days, if it is within an hour or two of time to get up, my brain fires up and follows rabbits down holes, so I no longer check the time.
I drift in and out without really going all the way out. Soon I hear the ticking noise of the baseboard heat firing up, so I know it is close. The alarm finally goes off and the pup rushes in, so excited to start the day (read, get fed). When I swing my feet to the floor, my right ankle screams at me. I can barely stand, and the pup keeps circling, telling me to hurry.
I had packed my running gear the night before so I could run at lunch the following day. I have been slowly trying to get back out there, but this morning it feels like my ankle is telling me, "forget your plans, just keep being lazy." I stumble my way to the back door, let the dog out, and try to release whatever tension has built up in my muscles.
After breakfast, still limping a bit, I take the dog for her morning walk. With the fall back of the clock, it is now fully light again when we hit the driveway. Our driveway is steep so I don't fault the dog for pulling on her leash this particular morning. The length of the morning walk ends up being determined by how many times she stops to sniff and mark. Today we weren't going to travel very far.
For some reason she especially loves to mark pine branches, and with the winds of the last few days the streets are filled with them. My place is small enough that I have not had room to put up a Christmas tree since moving here, and now I can add "dog peeing on tree" as a reason for it not to happen. We make our way through the neighborhood and pine boughs, not traveling fast, not getting very far.
I make it to work later than usual. With the decreased work load, this is not much of an issue, but I am sort of leaning into it, adding a few minutes each day to my arrival time. I do manage to get out for a run, chalking up a bit over two miles but they continue to be painful. Ankle stiffness joined Plantar Fasciitis, but it was my lungs that bothered me the most. I don't know if it is all due to lack of fitness, or if some sickness is coming on, but either way it feels like something is gumming up the works. You are encouraged to listen to your body, but I think I need to ignore it for the first few weeks when all it keeps doing is telling me to stop.
My workload that started out light is filled with little projects and small fires and soon it is time to go. When the day started I had one more issue to research before dropping off my ballot, but that is done and I am off to the library. Washington is all mail-in ballots these days, but I still like dropping it off in one of the ballot boxes. I guess it just feels more official that way.
I park a couple blocks away knowing that there will likely be a line of cars waiting their turn. As I walked up to the library, there was also a line of people inside. It turns out there was an Accessible Polling Station there where people could fill out their ballot in person. The line of people snaked around the lobby, and it didn't seem to be moving. Stories from around the country are already telling of people waiting for hours in line to vote. I admire the determination of the people who waited, while wondering why more states don't use the mail-in and early voting system we have here. I am anxious for our country right now. It feels like we are on a precipice, and I am no longer confident that this is just swings of a pendulum, that we will step back from the void.
With the time change it is dark when I get home, and it is also raining. Two more excuses to add to the pain in my feet for not taking the dog on a walk tonight. But after we each have our dinner and I sit here for a bit to share my day, we rally, grab a light, and make our way out into the darkness.