The Pleasure Report. Week 46. The ‘we love snow’ edition.

Week 46 in a year of pleasure.

This week I’m unpacking.

I have moved into my new home and am taking the week to unpack, settle myself in, re-line and put winter wadding into curtains, things like that.

So, the lovely Hannah is back, guest posting.

Hello Hannah!

Hannah’s Pleasure Report

Hello, lovely to be back :-). This time I’m all wrapped up in front of the fire with dog and cats sharing the warmth as I write this. How nice.

The Pleasure

I’m more confident on general rather than specific amounts of pleasure and pain. Apologies to the quantifiers out there. This week I had …

Quite a lot of pleasure(s) this week. Quite a bit of pain too.

A selection of the pleasure

Sensual winter stuff.

By that I mean feelings and sensations in my body. Lots of them and lots of them that I like. And lots of them that are to do with this time of year and where I live which just happens to be super snowy at the moment.

The snow here has a quality that I’ve never known anywhere else, or maybe it’s just something that’s happening this year. I don’t know. But the snow has this kind of crusty top layer (not very attractive description I admit). There’s the harder top layer, and then once you’ve stepped through it, there’s the lovely fluffy snow underneath. Somewhere between the creme brulee experience and a good meringue (gooey and soft on the inside). It makes walking on the hills such a yummy in my tummy experience, like I’ve got a tummy in my foot and I’m biting into the snow as I stand on it. Walking is like chewing, eating, savouring the snow, much more than just stepping on it. It makes me come home feeling like I’ve had a big treat. I almost giggle my way through the walk.

There’s also a clarity to the sky at the moment which is just out of this world. Hmmm, is that a really or obvious thing to say? Is the sky out of this world, literally I mean? Anyway, the skies are just so clear and so fantastically filled with stars at the moment and I get a nightly treat of them as I take the dog for his final pre-bedtime pee in the garden. This week I’ve been just sitting there for a few minutes, staring at the sky, crunching my feet in the snow and watching my breath rise up into the night sky. Amazing.

One can feel all mystical and wooooooo at moments like that. Lovely.

Going large on the Christmas build-up.

I’m really blinking embracing the lead up to Christmas this year. Doing all the things that I did as a kid but haven’t had the time or the energy to do since then. I’m not working so I’m allowing myself the time and the space (and the suspension of judgement about my lack of ‘productivity’) to really enjoy this prolonged and exciting build up to Christmas.

I’ve done home-made decorations, I’m making a lot of my gifts this year, I listen to carols on iTunes (can you believe it) and already know which candle-lit concerts I’m going to go to. I’ve watched nearly all the “Top Ten Christmas Movies of All Time” either on YouTube or o dvd and I’ve loving every minute of it. For as long as I can remember (i.e. the past 15 years since leaving home) Christmas has been a hassley, expensive, difficult, cold, holiday juggling family expectations and friend commitments, often ill and energy depleted. Well, that’s how it has felt to me. And this year I’m just swimming in the childy love of it all.

I even got invited to my neighbour’s daughter’s nativity yesterday and I can tell you that watching a bunch of kids all dressed up and proud as punch singing a load of songs, in and out of rhythm, in and out of tune but with complete joy has been one of my highlights of the year .

Loved it – what joy!

Films films films

For some reason I’m going on various film sprees on YouTube at the moment. I’ve had my very own “Doris Day Day”, my John Wayne Season, my Jackie Chan season going right back to his earliest stuff. The whole lot. I’m just finding myself lost in filmathons in my own home and coming out really delighted by the wonder of a good film. And good acting. And ‘times gone by’.

John Wayne I love you.

The Pain

Worry. Worry. Worry.

One of the troubles with taking time out to reassess life is that, hmmm, sometimes it doesn’t look that good. Or feel that good. Or I give myself a hard time about what it does look like thinking that it should look different. I can tend towards comparison with other people’s lives and I never seem to see the stuff that’s favourable to me, just the stuff that leads me to worry.

The pain in the recent week has been worry worry worry about the future. What should I do as I job? What kind of a relationship do I want and am I capable of creating it? What about children – oh the question of children and the conflict of body (have them have them have them what are you waiting for!) and mind (but there are so many children out there without parents already, and what about global warming, and you’re such a crazy nut and shouldn’t be allowed children anyway as you’ll only pass on all your terrible tendencies (such as worrying too much) onto them) etc. etc. etc.

Breathe in. Meditate. Exercise. Walk in nature. You don’t need to understand everything Hannah. You can allow the world to unfold without having to control it all. All is going to work out fine anyway.

And breathe.

The pain I did something about

Hmmm, food stuff is a bit of an issue for me and has been for a while now. How much to eat. What. When. What are my rhythms. When am I hungry rather than when do I think I should be. And how often should I eat.

I’ve been struggling to find a way of eating that works for me. Fits in with me. Gives me energy when I want and need it and doesn’t bloat me/weigh me down/leave me feeling uncomfortable. And I’ve noticed recently that I often eat a healthy breakfast (gets you going, kick starts the metabolism for the day, it’s better to eat more heavily early on as you’ve got the day to work it off rather than having a heavy meal in the evening and then sleeping on it etc.) but then find it difficult to ‘get going’. When I worked that lead me to find it hard to really focus in the mornings or get the important stuff done. And now it means I find it difficult to get on with jobs and kick start the day.

And if I don’t start well, well, I don’t tend to carry on well either.

And then I decided not to have breakfast. Just not have it and see what that did. It might not sound radical, but having had difficulty around food for a long time to then go against the received understanding of the ‘best way to eat’ felt pretty scary. Was I actually going to trust my own body over what all the experts had to say about eating – especially when I’m not the weight I want to be and don’t eat the way I would like to? Well, I did it. And I can’t tell you what a weight off my mind it has been (maybe there’s not a pun there after all). I feel completely freed of the expectation to eat when I get up, it frees to start my day light, unhampered, feeling “go-getty” rather than like I’m at the bottom of a big hill before I’ve even started, and then I either have a snack at around 11, an early lunch, or nothing until lunch. Whichever my body wants.

What a relief to have stopped forcing myself to eat when I actually didn’t want to. And what a sense of hope that having done that, gradually, all the rest of my day will settle into place and my body – now that’s it’s been given some uninterrupted time on the mic to express itself – will be able to communicate what it needs the rest of the time too.

Ahhhhhhhh.

How about you?

How’s your pleasure been this week?

I’d love to hear from you in the comments.

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