It was 8:30 a.m., another February Thursday, just like the one before.
It was time to get up, but for what?
It seemed that every day for the last three years, the last 1095 days, morning had been the same. Dull, cold, eerily quiet, and giving Bets every reason to roll over and go back to sleep. These mornings were beginning to resemble the movie “Ground Hogs Day,” where Jim Murray wakes up to the same day, day after day after day, finding nothing had changed at all. It was just another, dull, cold, overcast day.
"Uggh," is all Bets heard come out of her mouth as she laid there thinking about it, not moving, still to cold to get out of bed, she rolled over for a few more minutes.
And Bets wondered, laying there, straining to see outside through the crack in her curtains (to see exactly what it was like outside), to what she knew was another frigid, white New York February day, if today would be the day when things might possibly change.
Patch, her loving and loyal bulldog, lay next to her like a person, the perfect (person) Master warmer and of course a great protector. And that cat Rambo, a surprise to the family fold a few month earlier, was making claim of the extra pillow on the bed, next to her head, purring peacefully, as if the pillow was there just for him (of course it was there just for him) while he kept one eye open watching what was going on in the room. And Precious, the other cat, no where to be seen, had found her own warm hiding place somewhere in the room.
The tiny electric heater hummed on the wrought iron book case in the corner near her covered window. It had been so cold lately, she just turned the heat down to 62 in the rest of the house and shut her bedroom door. Surprisingly that heater kept the room very warm and cozy, a nice oasis in the house. That was when the thought went through her head that maybe that was why it had become not only her sanctuary during these excessively long and cold winter days (and nights, it seemed), but also one for the animals.
The light in her room was like twilight as she lay there, wondering, secure under her cocoon of covers if something, anything would make today different than the last 1095 days?
The chair in the corner could vaguely be made out and appeared like a person quietly sitting, waiting. Waiting for Bets to wake up so they could announce that “today, Bets, is your lucky day. Today, your life will change. Today …” and then she looked away from the make believe person in the corner that was really a chair and she decided to Thank God for what she did have, which was a lot actually, considering the last 1095 days, and made her way into the day.
She crawled out of her safe cocoon of blankets away from her dog bed warmer and clumsily pulled on the five pound sweater she wore on twenty degree days. It seemed that temperature, twenty or below, had become such a normal temperature this winter. She couldn't remember a winter so cold, not in a long time.
She pulled on her pea green sweat pants that matched her pea green T-Shirt and slipped on her pink slippers that, to her comfort, had finally taken on the shape of her feet and kept them perfectly warm through the frigid days and nights. She found her glasses, too, which she absolutely hated, but needed to see anything with clarity now days, and made her way to the coffee pot.
She stopped to think about coffee for a moment. What did she like about it? Odd, she thought, to even be thinking about something like that so early.
The color sure was unattractive. Black, of all the colors coffee could be and it is black. Not brown or green or yellow like tea, but black. It sure didn't keep the masses from consuming it, so she figured she was the only one who had ever had that thought.
Then there was the taste that was so disappointing more times than not. Sometimes it was so bitter it made her wrinkle her nose. Caffeine was also a variable, and probably she thought, the main reason so many drink it, to "kick-start" their day.
She remembered a time when the coffee she drank at a coffee shop was so strong she got a gut ache from it, and she was glad she was in charge of her own brew now.
That was when she finally realized it was the smell, the “aroma” of the coffee that spoke to her so loudly. Not the color or the taste, or the caffeine, for that matter, but the "aroma". She inhaled it, one, two, three times, and as it hit her nose a smile formed on her face and for the first time, in an extremely long time, something was different.
Something was changing in how she was feeling. She noticed that she felt hopeful, energized and ready to try some of the idea’s she had been filing away in the back of her mind for so long. She was filing them all away for another day, that "perfect day,” that never came. She realized right in that moment, there was not going to be a "perfect" day to start, so she needed to start ... right now.
She could not believe she got that celerity from the smell of coffee. Who knew? Bets did now. The timing was perfect. For once ... in a very long time, 1095 days long.. something was perfect!
She watched the coffee brew in the old Mr. Coffee machine she had inherited from some random family member and listened to it as it sputtered and popped and the hot, clear water dripped through the coffee and come out the other side coffee black. “It does have its own color black," she thought to herself as she watched it for minute, and proceeded to the bathroom, smiling for a change.
So what was she going to work on, what was she going to do to make today different from the last 1095 days? The difference was that she was going to finally, after all these days, three years’ worth of days, sit down and write something – something that would light up the page and make people stand up and say, “wow, that is awesome, why have you not written before?” And she will reply, “well I used to, but I got out of the habit, until the other day, when I woke up with a hope and a desire to do something, something different. I got the idea after smelling my coffee brewing the other day, the aroma flipped a switch in me – funny, right, how smells can awaken you creative side? That is what it did for me. Curious isn't it?"
Bets smiled to herself in the mirror, she was finally feeling it. She was getting her purpose back again, her "groove" so to speak, she finally had something to say after 1095 days. She realized she had a lot to say, and smiling at herself in the mirror one more time as she said, “Well Bets, you better get started,” and she walked to her computer, with her coffee.
The day had finally changed.
She knew at that moment that not another day would go by and be the same, and every day would now be worth getting up for. Because no matter what the next 1095 days bring, there will always, from now on, be something to write about.