Finding peace in predictable unpredictability

Sunrises give us the daily opportunity to be still. We should take it



The rising sun peaking through a thin haze of clouds the morning of Oct. 11

I’m sitting on a blanket I’ve laid out on the beach. It’s 6:54 a.m. The sun is due to rise soon. 

It’s Monday, and we don’t have school. So I’m here, gazing out at the vast lake and the light pink haze that stretches above a thick layer of clouds, listening to the lulling sound of the waves. The morning and a light breeze invites some coldness, but it’s a comfortable coldness. 

Relief always washes over me when I’m here at this quiet hour of the day. Today it feels especially nice because I woke up in the headspace of I-don’t-know-what’s-going-on (I’m sure most of y’all can relate).

Sept. 29 sunrise

The week of Sept. 27, I went to see the sunrise every day. The whole seven days. Which, I admit, was a lot and I was definitely feeling the effects by Friday (forever grateful to Dr. Haak for cancelling our early bird class that day – really saved me). I don’t regret doing it though, because I still loved it even if I was slightly dying inside during my Zoom classes.

I don’t go every day anymore because that’s not sustainable, at least for me. But since that week, I have gone to see the sunrise a few times whenever I was in need of some reprieve from the world or just to be alone with my thoughts.

There’s something very comforting in both the reliability and unpredictability of the sunrise. We are confident in the fact that the sun will rise every morning. We don’t spend time wondering if it’ll rise, we just trust that it will. 

Yet at the same time, there’s a lot of variation in how the sun presents itself  in the morning. It changes day to day and sometimes even minute to minute. One morning, I took 57 photos of the same sunrise because it seemed to take on a completely new form every few minutes. 

Sept. 30 sunrise at 6:29 AM
Sept. 30 sunrise at 6:45 AM
Sept. 30 sunrise at 6:51 AM







And today, it’s this predictable unpredictability that brings me ease. I may be greeted with a sunrise that seems sub par, but then turns into something truly remarkable. Maybe the sky will be full of clouds and I can’t even see the sun. Maybe the sky will just be a beautiful sky from the outset. Yet even if it’s “bad,” I still enjoy the stillness of the moment.

We’re so fortunate to live near such nature and beauty and we ought to appreciate it while we can. Even if you’re not a morning person, I encourage you to go see the sunrise every once in a while, whether you just go with friends or, as I more frequently do, alone. 

There’s something therapeutic about being in solitude at that time and place. There’s a different fulfillment you feel when doing something completely for yourself. 

This moment of peace before the day starts provides the space for unthinking thinking; a state to just be. And sometimes I think we forget to do that: just breathe and simply exist.