There is a certain, quiet stillness in the early morning hours that I truly love. It comes after the snow plows have rolled through town, before the urging of alarm clocks to rise and shine, and prior to the arrival of horn-beeping delivery trucks in the village. Lately, those fleeting peaceful moments have been filled by a loud, little captive shouting to be freed from the confinement of his crib. It has been a struggle for me over the last week and a half to find something good about getting up with Clover at four-thirty or five in the morning. I kept trying to see a positive side to it but each morning coming up short. The call of slumber and a warm bed proved too alluring to cheerfully greet the dawn.
The other day, I brought the freed little prisoner, all smiles following his liberation, to the front room. We hung out, Clover with his sippy cup of milk and me with my coffee. Wishing for even just five more minutes of sleep, I tilted my head back and sighed. It was then that I heard it - a solitary warble that steadily grew into boisterous chatter. The birds are back! We haven’t heard birds chirping for months. Their happy trills signal the impending arrival of spring. And so, my sleepy steps are a little lighter now, buoyed by the chipper songs of our feathered friends.