This morning my arthritis pain is…well, it is. But it isn’t as much so as yesterday, and the improvement is the foundation on which my smile is built, this morning. My coffee is hot and tasty, and the morning is chilly – this seems a pleasant combination, and tends to reinforce the smile. On my way to make coffee, I spotted my rather shy clown pleco (Panaqolus maccus) scooting out of view and I grin from ear to ear to have seen him at all. He has his favorite hiding spots and generally only ‘comes out’ when he’s pretty sure no one is watching.

The only picture I've gotten of my clown pleco since I moved.

The only picture I’ve gotten of my clown pleco since I moved.

So far, a basically pleasant morning, filled with small things to smile about, and some arthritis pain. I start to think ‘not bad for a Monday’ and catch myself rolling my eyes rather dismissively; there’s nothing ‘wrong with’ Mondays – and setting those expectations, even in a back-handed way, is no way to treat myself, particularly on an actual Monday. I find my thoughts wandering to ‘how did we find our way to a place where Mondays are given such a poor reputation?’ We can get pretty worked up about how shitty Monday’s might be (or tend to be, or seem to tend to be, or are rumored to seem to tend to be), but in practice, are Mondays actually any worse than any other days? Maybe Mondays are worse for people coming off a weekend bender and having to drag themselves through an ugly commute into the office to commit acts of servitude in corporate purgatory…but even that…I feel kinda bad for poor Monday having to listen to people talk shit on her all the time. Pretty good that she’s not a person.

This particular Monday seems to be starting well, at least for me. I am not reading the news – even the articles linked by friends on Facebook get no attention from me this morning. They’ll be there on Tuesday, no doubt. I am enjoying my coffee, my yoga, my meditation, my writing. I am enjoying an email from a dear friend. I am enjoying a pedicure, and a foot rub – oh sure, I know as well as anyone else that a foot rub I give myself doesn’t feel ‘as good’ as a foot rub given to me by someone else…but living alone doesn’t mean I simply go without everything that feels good. lol. That would suck, wouldn’t it? (I assure you, a foot rub I give myself still feels pretty damned good.) I woke a little ahead of the alarm this morning, and feeling well-rested, I got up. There’s more time in my morning, and on a Monday I suppose I could go to work early…but damn, what does the job ever do for me that I didn’t straight up earn in the first place? Nothing. I do verbs of a variety of sorts, for a variety of purposes and persons, all the time, and certainly I am worthy of investing in my own needs and pleasure on a Monday morning; the job will still be there at the usual time. I choose to put my time and my effort where it will be most appreciated this morning – in myself, and meeting my own needs.

The sun rises noticeably later each Monday. It is still summer, but this morning is not a hot one, and I am pleased to wear something less…sleeveless, for a change. The morning is comfortably cool. I smile, noticing the time; it’s only now the time I usually wake up, a leisurely Monday morning, indeed – with plenty of smiles.

I spent much of the weekend, in spite of pain, puttering around the apartment continuing to ‘move in’ – smaller tasks, now, but the details are part of what makes this place “home” for me. In the rush of having to move ahead of schedule (my safety is more important than financial concerns, honestly), details that I would have handled quite differently got…’managed’ hastily and without much forethought: paperwork stuffed into drawers, unrelated items packed into boxes that were not well-labeled, and on moving in some cupboards were stuffed with things that “don’t really go there”, just to reduce visual clutter enough to create a sense of order, and momentum to continue unpacking.  I love creating order from chaos. I love the sorting process of figuring out where things most ideally go for both storage and use. I love creating this space that “feels like I live here”. The small details of moving in delight me – my comfort, built on my choices. It’s lovely to have this autonomy after so many years of conversations resulting in me compromising what works for me so that someone else can have what works for them. I guess that sounds pretty selfish… for now I am okay with that. I have lived a lot of years making do in living arrangements not well-suited to the issues I have, or set up such that daily life is an impediment to therapy, or rehabilitating this injury. I’m overdue to enjoy things “my way” for a while. (First, I’ve had to figure out what that is…) 🙂

Monday? It’s a good day to spend time with the woman in the mirror. It’s a good day to take a ‘no compromise’ approach to treating myself well. It’s a good day for simple pleasures, and for bringing a smile into the office – and into the world.