Chelle Summer

Sunrise over Sunset

Michelle Rusk

I have written before about the importance– to me– of running and walking at sunrise, about how it has gotten me through some very dark times in my life. And how I learned of its importance– long after I was doing it and feeling solace in it– from a Navajo man who told me that they believe in greeting the day with their steps, with a run.

I get up at 4:00 am and I realize that most people find that nutty and believe that I jump out of bed to start the day. Not so. I pretty much roll myself out of bed and over the last month I have stumbled to my office (and somehow manage function sitting on my ball) to write two pages before I leave for my workout.

Recently, I was finishing up the last part of my workout with a loop around the park by my house, Hattie and Ash in tow, when we ran into one of the other regulars. We always note the weather and how lucky we are to be outside as darkness becomes light, as the day begins, as if overnight God wiped the chalkboard clean and washed the streets down. She and I always talk about how beautiful the mornings are, the outline of the Sandia Mountains taking place to the east of us as light starts to emerge. With another friend, we are always certain to look up at the moon and the stars– and whatever planets we can see in our usually clear morning skies. This morning the moon was low in the sky, but a sliver and reminder of how the sky changes daily while the earth rotates and seasons change, time passes.

On this morning, I happened to say, “I much prefer sunrise over sunset” and she agreed. Then I added, “I hate to get up, but I love to be up at this time of day.” She also agreed.

I know sunset for many people is the reward for a long day of work, life, whatever. Sunset is the end of the day, a way to cap off everything that’s happened before slipping off to rest and sleep.

But for me, I need sunrise much more. I need to be reminded in the morning of the hope of what’s to come, the belief of all that’s ahead of me, of knowing whatever happened the day before there’s a chance to start over. With a clean slate.