Panic set in as I glanced at the time on my iPhone. 08:40. I wondered how I could have overslept so long. My heart raced as I jumped out of bed and ran to wake the children. This would have been the first time they would be late to school.
There was no sign of either Cinnamon or Sage. The bed was empty. It took a few seconds for me to realise I've already done the morning routine. Two hours ago. The kids were already in school. On time.
After walking the children to the bus stop, I set out to read on my bed. Tired as I was, I drifted off to sleep and awoke an hour later. It's strange how your mind creates delusions when you are tired. We have 24 hours in a day in which to accomplish a certain set of tasks. Sometimes we can have the best intentions but the mind and body have other plans. We might get angry when we're forced into bed rest for a day or two. But our bodies are telling us to slow down. Breathe. Reassess. Move forward with caution.
Upon return from school, the children were greeted with a new book. It arrived earlier in the day and was a book for Sage - about elephants. His first exposure to elephants was at six months of age when he received a stuffed elephant pillow as his first Christmas gift from Oma. Five years later, he still carries it around and cannot sleep without it. Last year, Cinnamon chose another stuffed elephant to give Sage for Christmas as she knew how much he loved elephants. They named him Elli.
The book wasn't a children's story book, rather an educational one for children about the lives of elephants and the differences between African and Asian elephants.They were saddened when I read about men killing elephants for their ivory tusks. The greed and selfishness of mankind is astounding.
We read how elephants were vegetarians, how African elephants are larger than Asian elephants, and how the ears of the African elephants resembled the shape of the continent of Africa whilst the ears of the Asian elephants had the shape of India.
We learned of the great emotion elephants have when a loved one dies and of the intelligence this gentle creature possesses. Sage expressed his desire to go to Africa one day to see elephants. I hope one day his wish comes true.
Our delusion of believing we are somehow a more significant creature than all others is simply a delusion. A deception.
The words on the last page of the book, by Steve Bloom, are one to take to heart:
Elephants are very intelligent and usually very gentle. They have long memories, deep feelings, and lots of love for their family and friends.