Just about every school morning, my alarm clock violently yanks me out of sleep at 6 o' clock. I set my alarm -- a radio -- to a station that has no connection, because I prefer being woken up by static from the radio than Danielle's voice on the z100 Morning Show -- not like I have a fondness for either to be the absolute first thing I hear every morning.
I purposely set the alarm's volume extremely high, and keep my iHome on the other side of my room on my bookshelf. Otherwise, I'll never leave my bed. This means that every morning, my eyelids spring open as I throw myself out of bed and fly across the room to turn it off as soon as possible. My alarm clock scares me. I have nightmares about the cursed thing.
Here's a typical school morning:
One second, I am asleep. In an instant, my alarm is off and my eyes are suddenly open. Radio static. Excruciatingly loud. I fling myself out of bed with as much balance as I would if I were on a pogo stick. I can never get there fast enough. I slam my finger on the button, and the egregious noise vanishes. It is quiet once again -- just as it was several instants ago. Except for the fact that several instants ago, I was still in bed, my mind still resting and my eyes still closed. Do I really have to go shower? My eyes are so heavy, they're bound to roll out of their sockets. I run my fingers through my hair. Oh wait -- I can't. It's too knotty. Yup, that means I've got to go shower. Tough luck. Some mornings, I can get away with that; but not this time. I remove my tank top and pajama pants and leave the room. The hallway of our apartment is dark, except for a faint glow from the dining room that tells me my father's awake. It's less difficult for me to get up in the morning if I'm not the first one up. Not exactly easier; just less difficult.
"Temperature?" I yell across the hallway in a hoarse, stinky breath. I've got to dress properly for the weather.
"34!" my father shouts back.
"Penn Station," I mutter to myself as I stumble through the narrow hallway toward the bathroom. Before I even reach the door, I feel cold air escaping the crack of the bathroom door. The window has been left open overnight, like always. I enter the icy room and feel the freezing tiles on my bare feet, which were warm and safe under a blanket several minutes prior.
Once I shower and get dressed, I'm awake enough to jog the perimeter of Manhattan -- but I don't need to continue getting ready until 7:10. There's only one problem, though. It's 6:22. So what do I do? I go back to bed, anyway. It's best to get more rest, right? I enter my parents' room and lie down with my mother and my dog.
The only thing in this wide, wide world that's more horrific than waking up in the morning is doing it twice. It seems that as soon as I'm just getting into a deep sleep in my parents' comfy bed, with my warm pup curled up by my feet, and the soft blanket draped over my body... it's 7:12, and it's time to lift my freezing, wet head from the soaked pillow, trip over my father's shoes on my way to the door, and squint as I enter the bright hallway to the kitchen. Waking up is the worst kind of usher into the day, but there's nothing to do about it, because it's the only way.