I was up late the other night writing a federal grant that would bring health care into my non-profit agency. When I write for grant funding it always turns out that I start in the evening and keep going until the early morning hours of the next day. That is how we roll, during the day we help people and by night we write. It is a secrete club, a sorority where you earn your right by sheer sleeplessness.
Certainly not a 9-5 gig where you punch the clock or leave the when the whistle blows.
After about 3 hours of restless sleep without any deep sedation, I remember the scream of the alarm. I pounced up in the bed and shuffled my sorry butt into the shower. I stood against the cold shower wall with the hot water pounding away my ache and tension from my non-sleep short night. I plowed through my morning routine when the next thing I knew my hands were on the wheel. I was thinking, Lord have mercy, I am in the car energized and passionate for another 12-14 hour day.
Something was off this day. Nothing seemed to go right. I was not on my game. I stumbled around the day not able to catch may groove or passion. When you write grant, it owns your thoughts. It becomes what you think about day and night. Like a masters thesis or a dissertation it is hard to separate yourself from the words on the paper. Your head is in the game including heart, body and soul. You can’t sleep, you forget to eat and way to tired to exercise.
That day I was confused by my discombobulation. I felt as though I lost my rhythm. I fell out of the zone losing the beat. I was a afraid I lost my skill, talent and ability all rolled up in one day. There was nothing I could do to dig into the moment. I I could not get any traction of thoughts that was leading to words on the page. After 11 hours of accomplishing 2 sentences, I decided to go home.
It was painful. My back ached, legs dragged as I headed home after a day of feeling dejected. I ruminated that I had lost the rhythm with no confidence. The task at hand seemed like a mission impossible. During the long car ride home, I felt like I was about to give up on writing the grant. I stepped out of the car, my left loafer covered foot planted on the ground. As I planted my right foot on firmly on the ground, there in all of its glory was my black sneaker.
The New Dawn of any day demands that you ease into it, reflect on what is important and let all the rest go and for heavens sake, look down at your feet when putting your shoes on in the dark.