I am a morning person, otherwise known as a "lark." Morning is when I am at peak energy, both physically and mentally. Even when I try to sleep in, I find it hard to do so--the sun wakes up, and so do I. And I enjoy the morning hours immensely--they are my thinking and reflecting time and provide the quietness I need to get the day started out right.
My five-year-old is an "owl"--if left to his own body rhythm he would gladly stay up past 11:00 p.m. and sleep until 10:00 a.m. in the morning. Since he does not have a reason that he must wake up early, I don't see a need to impose a different schedule. So when I have reached the end of my day, usually around 9:30 p.m., I have him get ready for bed. Then after stories and prayer I kiss him good night and retire, giving him permission to continue playing in his room until he is ready to sleep. Still, if he gets too far off the rest of the family's timetable we run into conflicts. So if he is not up by 9:00 a.m. in the morning (which is most of the time), I wake him up. Then I get to enjoy this:
There is nothing like watching a sleeping child wake up. The tiniest motion of a pinky finger . . . the flicker of an eyelash or twitch of a nostril . . . the little yawns and breaths and baby sounds . . . and finally, the stretching, opening of eyes and smile . . . all followed by 5-10 minutes of cuddles. It's times like this that I most deeply count the blessings of motherhood. And the fact that I get to enjoy this after I have had several hours of peace and quiet makes it even better! I'll miss these days when they're gone.