It is dark and the house is still except for my softly snoring husband. Not even the earliest rising birds have begun to ruffle their feathers in wakefulness. I am in deep REM slumber with at least an hour of delicious sleep yet to savor. Suddenly, my dreams are interrupted by an intensely cold wetness on the back of my neck. My eyes fly open and I fling myself over to come face to face with a freckled white, not to mention cold and wet, nose.
I yawn. Duncan apologizes with his happy canine smile. I feel the flutter of a cooling breeze as his furiously wagging tail fans my face. “Dunk,” I whisper, as I glance at the clock in disbelief, “do you know what time it is?”
I feign indignation, but he knows he’s got me wrapped around his paw (or “pawsie,” the baby talk term I use with him. Yes, I’m hopelessly sappy). I rub the sleep from my eyes as he gazes at me adoringly while resting his head on my leg. I throw back the covers and head for the bathroom to pull on my sweats. Duncan does a happy dance and prances around the bedroom, which rouses Zoe from her spot in the corner. Arching her back in a morning stretch, she trots over to rub against my leg. The three of us make our way through the dark to the kitchen, and my two furry friends wait patiently for their breakfast.
I am a morning person and treasure this brief respite before my busy day gets fully underway. As the sun begins to rise, I make a pot of coffee and putter around the kitchen while Duncan and Zoe crunch away. After a quick scan of the headlines and a few moves on Words with Friends, I ask Duncan if he is ready for his walk. He has never turned me down.
My day begins with quiet “me” time, a chance to reflect and prepare, and best of all, expressions of unconditional love from two of the most adorable creatures ever. Who needs that extra hour of sleep, anyway?