There are a few things I truly enjoy doing and I have been pushing those aside lately. Or when I did those I rushed through them as not worthy of my time. Or I did them quietly. And I felt guilty liking them when in reality those things made me be me.
-I love baking with the kids. I love baking sweet stuff like cakes, madeleines, brioches, cupcakes. And I love seeing kids around me when I bake and to do it with them. I love how our place smells when we bake here.
-I love having kids over at my place. I love sitting and reading a book on a couch when overhearing kids speak, laugh, joke and make all kind of funny noises. I do not mind them screaming and solving their small conflicts. I enjoy having them around. And I specially love hearing them speak French.
-I love driving and looking at people and places. Long commute does not tire me. I am at peace when I drive. I like the feel of the steering wheel and the gas pedal; I like their resistance and obedience at the same time. Driving is sensual for me.
-I love reading. Just that. Just sitting with the windows open and hearing the sounds of a quiet summer afternoon. The birds outside, the breeze. It feels comfortable. It feels like if the world was made of silk and felt soft and luxurious at the same time.
-I love learning new etudes and minuets on violin. I love it because of the sound and because it takes all my attention. It makes me forget everything else except music and be really present to the strings, the bow, the sound. I belong to myself when I am learning to play music.
-I love my bedroom. It is the most peaceful and relaxing place I have ever known. I do not like clothing too much. I love myself after the shower in a black silk negligee reading in my bed. These are the best moments with myself. All the years I have been married my bedroom has never been mine. I never liked it. It was a pile of furniture and things that belonged to both of us and none of us were passionate about. Just things. Right now it feels like beauty. I am passionate and relaxed at the same time there.
-I love my work. It seems very stressful, but I do not mind this appearance of stress. I like doing things with goal and purpose. And I get to do it every day. With all the business and mess I am not stressed. I learnt how to manage time, people and my own emotions. Stress is created by postponing the right decision. Once you do things stress disappears and you find the beauty of resistance and obedience. And again, it is sensual.
-I love that most of the things I live every day I feel them with my skin. Living is sensual. It is sexual. It is physically exciting. There are few things that I like more than others. Because those excite me right away and make me not think about the past and not dream about the future. It is the sun on my skin; the feeling of the sand under my feet; walking on the shore in the cold ocean water; the taste and the smell of coffee; the warmth of wine when I am thirsty; the moment when it starts raining and I feel my hair getting wet; putting oil on my skin after the bath; talking business to people; sitting in my bed before falling asleep; fighting and seeing people fight. All those things make me live right there.
Many times I felt guilty for feeling the things so passionately. For getting excited with each one of them. In my late teens my mom consulted a doctor, an OB, who was her friend because I was always too excited about everything. The doctor found nothing wrong with me, she said I sensed the things with my body at a much higher rate than other people. Still with my mom’s worries I carried the sense of guilt of living the way I am. I pushed it aside. I rushed through things that mattered the most. I resisted myself.
Somebody told me “be selfish”. Selfish does not mean to push others aside, it does not mean to disregard the people around, it does not mean to put myself in the first place always. It means to stop resisting myself. It means to enjoy (not not to feel guilty for) the small and big things I love doing.
Love is born from selfishness.
Thank you for sharing this, Masha. That’s a wonderful realization and now you can give more dedicated time to these things. They seem to feed your soul, so do them! That’s an instructive point, valid for me, too.
Oh, by the way, why did I think I was the only kid taken to the doctor for being “too much” of something?? When I was very young, my parents and their doctors thought I should have an encephalogram… to find out why was I so rebellious. They are still wondering why.