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Stress in the morning

If you ever get tense in the morning? Thousands of people are stressed out every morning and have to drive to work or school because they haven't planned their day. I have more tension when I regularly wake up late because my daily leisurely pace of coping with morning stressors is interrupted, as evidenced by having to cope with a mess left by my roommate's dog and skipping my regular morning train.
All were expected to go as planned on this particular day. I'm the kind of person who gets up a few minutes early so as not to have to deal with anything negative in a rushed manner. Nevertheless, this morning was destined to turn out differently.

Before sunrise, my alarm clock rang out loudly to wake me up. Even though I really do not like that noisy sound, it always gets me up in the morning. However, in that moment I thought I could stay in bed a few minutes longer. So, I carelessly hit the snooze button a few times until it was 15 minutes later. To be honest, I did not see that as much of a problem. After all, 15 minutes is not that much time, right? Briefly, I thought to myself "I will just hurry up a little bit and everything will be good." That was easier said than done.

Walking still very sleepy on my way to the bathroom, I noticed my roommate's dog peed all over the beautiful and new floor carpet, "Aww man!". That made me assume she forgot to walk her dog before she left for work. “So, my roommate was also late getting up this morning. How interesting”, I thought to myself but then I said out loud "How can she be so careless?" Just then, the dog looked at me with an apologetic face trying to say, "I'm sorry, but I cannot go outside by myself!" and ran away to probably hide somewhere.

With an annoyed and disgusted feeling, I tried to clean her dirty mess as quick and as much as possible. Soon after, I did my usual morning routine, took a shower and ate breakfast.

Although, I was trying my very best to do things as quickly as possible; I didn't check the time. Then it hit me, "Damn! It's already 7:15am. I'm gonna be late for school!!!" In a hurry, I grabbed all my stuff and rushed out of the apartment to the subway like I was trying to win a marathon. Unfortunately, fate was not on my side that morning and halfway to the train station it started to rain. Having not brought my umbrella, I was forced to dodge under overhangs where I could to keep dry. This tactic worked only modestly as the rain continued to fall at an ever-increasing pace.

At the train station, the train was already at the track basically ready to board, except it was so packed not even a single fly could fit in there. Sadly, I had to wait for the next one. That got me really stressed out, since I was already so late I couldn't waste any minute. While I waited for the next train, I noticed a homeless man sitting on a bench not far from where I was waiting, playing a guitar and singing for peoples’ spare change. This made me stop and think, “How does the stress I am feeling today compare to this man’s daily stress?”

As I pondered this though, the next train arrived. Sooner than I thought, I was riding on the train to Chambers Street. After about three stops the train was so packed again, just like I noticed it before. Inside, people started pushing and squeezing because they really wanted to get on that train. That made me awfully sad. "How can people just push and squeeze around like that?", I thought to myself.

Finally, after minutes of smelling people's bad breath and armpits, I got to my destination. Immediately, I began to walk as fast as I could to my school. Fortunately, the rain that met me as I walked to the train station had subsided for now. That's when I noticed I received an email from my teacher. When I read the email, I felt such a relief. He had emailed all of us to let us know that he will be a few minutes late for class, so that meant I didn't have to worry about being late anymore. In that moment, I was so happy to have the stress of being late lifted from my shoulders. Usually, I'm not the type of person who likes being late, unless it is really an emergency. Nevertheless, this morning seemed to be different and it taught me a valuable lesson about stress and how to deal with it more effectively.

I hope I won't have to experience a morning like that again. From this experience, I have learned that a break in one’s morning routine can lead to all kinds of unforeseen circumstances which I will try to avoid going forward by sticking to my normal schedule. In the future, I will make it a point to be up a few minutes early or take an earlier train just in case something happens. In the mornings, I have learned, everyone needs to be relaxed, energized, and focused to have a good start of the day.

July 24, 2021

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