In high school, one of my absolute favorite things was waking up close to noon on a weekend to the smell of my mom making pancakes in an attempt to finally get me out of bed. I'd be greeted with a warm coffee, some breakfast and a kiss on the head. Mornings to me were associated with afternoons, but now, I can't sleep in past 8 a.m.
It's like clockwork. I find myself starting to awaken from my daze around 7:30 a.m., resulting in me checking my phone to see what time it is. I always pray for it to be 5 a.m. so I can roll back to sleep, but the second I see it's close to 8, my mind starts wandering very far from dreamland and into reality. I fight to fall back asleep, but I never win. So I climb out of bed and start my coffee maker.
I blame my class schedule for my newfound morning affection. Last fall semester, I was forced to take morning classes because the courses were necessary and inconveniently located midmorning. I grew used to waking up around 8 a.m., so when it was time to set my spring semester schedule, I figured I might as well just continue with how my days were set up so I didn't accidentally slip up. Truth was, I enjoyed having my afternoons and evenings completely free to do how I pleased, instead of waking up late to spend my whole day in class just to go to sleep again.
Slowly but surely, my morning wakeups traveled into the weekends, and no matter how late I stayed up the night prior, I would expect to check my phone at 8 whether I liked it or not.
I would like to add that I understand 8 a.m. is not necessarily early. I would register a true "morning person" with a 5 or 6 a.m. alarm, but for a college student who only knows people who wake up around 11 a.m., I'm the oddball out.
At first, I was frustrated, especially since I became a person who craved to go to sleep before midnight, which in an apartment filled with loud girls who are all friends was nearly impossible. Because I couldn't sleep in, I would start to get exhausted from my lack of sleep and no matter how hard I tried to not check my phone, my body always knew the time.
I hated it, but then I learned to love the silence and solitude of the morning. One of my favorite things now is waking up before everyone to enjoy my cup of coffee on the balcony with my laptop to start my work for the day. I especially love reading in the morning so editing became a lot more enjoyable when I wasn't fighting the sounds of my surroundings anymore. I could focus only on the words in front of me, which, no brainer here, allowed me to grow in my craft.
I'm sure the late night owls, the people who go to sleep closer to 4 or 5 a.m., have the same feeling of comfort as morning people, but nights just don't work for everyone.
If you find yourself to be someone who can't sleep in anymore, well, you're not alone! I think the only thing you really can do is embrace your new attribute and enjoy it for what it is. As they say, the early bird gets the worm, so just choose whatever that may be for you.