Getting out of bed

In retrospect I don’t imagine there was ever a time when getting out of bed was easy. The imperative may occasionally have had a visceral draw  – say, if there were a cheerful component to the day’s agenda (like going for lunch or buying a new car).  Otherwise getting out of bed is normally about as enticing as having to brush one’s teeth after dinner; that is, a duty to be fulfilled.

At 73 years of age I often ask myself, What’s the hurry?  This existential enquiry from beneath the down-filled duvet seldom succeeds to diminish the native compulsion to arise, a custom I have mechanically (and sometimes painfully) preserved throughout my entire life. The stoic habit is I know enshrouded by the Protestant Work Ethic. Very early in life I learned the fulcrum of accomplishment and achievement. Seldom is the commitment diminished either by medical or epicurean obstruction. As a result the initial effort and the concluding involvement in life’s universal daily performances is an assuaging enactment, one additionally abated by expiation.

I have come to regard getting out of bed as a routine exemplification not only of human exigency but also of human victory. Life at this advanced and decomposing stage of existence is an inexorable fight to the end; either we give up and dissolve or we batter on. Ecclesiastes no doubt said it best, “The grasshopper shall become a burden”; that is, even the smallest thing is a misfortune. But likewise even the smallest effort is a piece of luck.

Ecclesiastes 12:3-5

[5] Yes, they shall be afraid of heights, And terrors will be in the way; And the almond tree shall blossom, And the grasshopper shall be a burden, And desire shall fail; Because man goes to his everlasting home, And the mourners go about the streets.

Bearing in mind the adage, “There are two ways to get down a river: either you know where to go or you know where not go”, the compulsion beneath the mattress may transform from pressing demand to calculated action.

The inability to get out of bed is a common symptom of someone suffering from a mental health disorder or substance use disorder. Often people who struggle with depression, anxiety, or any type of addiction may find it challenging to face the day each morning by getting out of bed. This is no way to live your life.

Confronting the blunt assessments of life by either the physical or metaphysical analysis affords little if any relief; essentially both predict dissolution at the behest of one weapon or another. Hence the challenge to take calculated action.  I say calculated to avoid submission to what might otherwise be offensive or discomforting. An action is an assertive bearing unlike inaction which is a tool for manipulation by powers other than one’s own.

In the result it may be nothing but pigheadedness which propels me onto the floor each morning. There is no prescription for life. But it is assured that without getting out of bed, there is little chance of doing anything. That, to my thinking, is a distinctly bilateral choice; namely, all or nothing.