I spent an entire day today luxuriating in the company of one of my nearest and dearest.
And it was truly divine.
The morning began, celebrating the birth and birthing anniversary of her and her daughter, two years ago today. Cake, party pies, mini quiches, fairy bread, coffee - and cake. Did I mention cake? Then flowed into some valuable one-on-one time together as we watched our children play. One of the most joyful things about my friendship with this gorgeous woman, is how wonderfully and easily our children play. It makes our get-togethers so effortless and ensures many hours are lost in the midst of water and sandpit play. And endless cups of coffee. And cake - did I mention cake?
Sure enough, at almost four, we found our way to the car with plans for home, my intention of evening yoga long forgotten. It struck me today how easily and happily I veer towards the pleasure in life. It wasn't always so. I used to have a tendency to limit myself to doses of pleasure - too much was gluttony, surely? And that can't be good for the soul! What hogwash.
If pleasure isn't good for the soul - then what is?
And how much is too much? And who on earth decided that ridiculous rule, anyway?
I seek pleasure wherever I can find it. And I languish in it. For as long as compatible with all other plans I may have. This train of thought continued in the back of my mind as I began preparing dinner. My instinct was to pour a glass of wine for Ben and myself to enjoy as we cooked. I bought myself up short, remembering my challenge. Then all of a sudden restricting myself a glass of wine seemed as ridiculous as restricting myself pleasure.
"Why are you doing the challenge?" he asked.
"To see if I can" I responded.
"Can you?" he asked.
"Of course I can - but I'm wondering why I feel the need to prove this to myself? The simple fact is, I drink wine because I enjoy it - not because I need it."
The other reason I wanted to stop was to enhance my current vitality kick.
I truly do not like placing restrictions on myself. With food, with activities, with people, with anything. If I was hit by a bus tomorrow, I'd just be pissed off that I needlessly restricted myself in enjoying one of life's pleasures, to prove a pointless point to myself about something that no one else gives a rat's buttock about. Seems all a bit silly, really.
So I'm out. The challenge that is. The desire is no longer there. Quite different to the desire to complete 30 days of yoga and 365 days of gratitude blogging. A challenge where I bring something *into* my life is much more appealing, than a challenge to take something *out* of my life. Particularly something I enjoy.
So I'm back to my authentic self. Enjoying the things I enjoy to the fullest. No longer feeling the need to prove anything to anyone or to myself (most significantly). Why I felt like that in the first place is something I will explore in more detail... because that's a curious head space in itself.