The Treasure of Pleasure

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Poor health can make one always look on the darkest side, and cultivating an awareness of pleasure can end up lost in a world of pain and suffering. So, in an effort to cultivate that awareness, as part of a mindfulness practice, here is a list – in no particular order – of 10 pleasurable things I have experienced today:

1. String resonance
2. The smell of mint and tea tree shower gel
3. A friend I can talk to about anything
4. Orgasm
5. The taste of coffee that felt like liquid velvet in my mouth
6. The scent of my son’s hair
7. Tender and passionate kisses
8. ‘Krave’ cereal
9. Watching ‘Interstellar’
10. Discovering the game ‘Blendoku’

It isn’t about some positive thinking nonsense of ‘accentuating the positive’ but, rather, noticing the pleasurable, taking delight in the delightful. Being mindful of anything at all that is nice, or just isn’t crappy. It’s easy to notice the shit, because it’s loud and obnoxious. The nice stuff can be there, but soft and subtle. Therefore, it takes looking for it and making over it. And, that’s what I’ve done here.

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This Is What It’s Like

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I want things to be better, I want to get better, and when, instead, things get worse – with my health, with the way I’m feeling – it’s a severe blow. Terrible. It’s life slapping me in the face. Again. It’s pure torment.

“You can choose to be happy and enjoy life.”  What a load of bollocks. You can choose to accept and sit with the pain, as mindfulness teaches. You can choose to escape some of the pain through books, music, sex, other distractions. But, the pain is still there. The struggle is still there. And, it isn’t enjoyable.

On the days that are less intense, I let my hopes rise. But, inevitably, disappointment comes with a vengeance in these times when it’s not only bad, but worse than ever. I let myself think that maybe there could be some freedom outside of death, just to be proven, once again, there is no freedom but death.

Everybody Hurts…

…sometimes.

Last night, for an event at my church called Jobel’s@7:07, I sang my cover version of the R.E.M. song “Everybody Hurts”, accompanied on guitar by the cosmically talented Mr. Bob Breeze.

The night was all about suffering, you see. Something that, well, if you’ve read many of my posts, you know I am not a stranger to.

I like this song, and I feel I did an overall good interpretation of it (it’s good; watch the vid, people!)…AND I certainly understand the lines that talk about days and nights being too long and feeling like one has had too much of this life. But…

It’s that encouragement to hang and hold on that gets me.

Oh, I know I’m not alone. I know that not everyone suffers from depression and mental illness, but – it’s true that – EVERYONE does hurt, sometimes. And, while many do not suffer with severe depression, anxiety, etc., there are quite a few who do. So, in these regards, I am not alone.

I also know that I am not alone when it comes to having an amazingly supportive husband, a few dear and precious friends, and a loving, saving, God of hope and healing.

Oh, yes. I am certainly not alone.

And yet… sometimes holding/hanging on is more than difficult; it is excrutiating.

And, I know…

I’m not alone.