Dessert First (story hour)
I had no motivation for anything at all this week, and Incoming Me keeps saying DESSERT FIRST, and I thought she meant in a more literal sense like bribing myself with sweetness.
But eventually my incoming selves got tired of me not getting it, and explained to me again in no uncertain terms that I can’t fight reality; I have to work with what is. And at the most basic level of [what is] rests the simple truth that I am motivated by Pleasure, Vengeance & Rebellion, but mostly pleasure.
Vengeance will work, and Rebellion, aka being told I can’t do something, will absolutely get me to do anything, but Pleasure is the most reliable door back to myself.
And back to myself is where I want to be before starting any task or setting off on any adventure.
This means, they said, that if I’m feeling grumpy and resentful (haha, which I very much was), it’s because I’m not living by Dessert First as a way of being, and I need to shower myself in pleasure before attempting anything at all.
Anyway, that’s why the check-in didn’t happen until Tuesday evening, because I had to re-learn this and acquire ginger cardamom chocolate, and take a delicious hot shower with a bath bomb. Most importantly, I had make the choice to ignore my long list and play hooky until I had wants again.
Weekend Check-in, we made it.
Reviewing the week aka Chicken/Check-in is not only a reassuring ritual and fun to say, but another form of remembering, turning inward with attentiveness.
We can name what was difficult and name what worked, I find naming therapeutic. What am I experiencing and how am I experiencing it? All intel is useful.
Mainly we’re here to take a breath for having made it here. High fives all around and hand-to-heart appreciation.
If I neglect to name something big in the world, could be ADHD, but also I’m on an extended break from news after spiraling hard in December.
Breathing for what was hard, challenging, uncomfortable, not fun…
THING ZERO and THING ONE remain the one two punch of the pandemic and the dissonance, the lack of an agreed upon reality or even a shared context, re the coronavirus and also in the political.
Related to this, and also in a more general sense, I just keep finding myself thinking about how trauma processing is just a full time unpaid job that is exhausting, on the personal and in the collective.
I am also thinking a lot about how, in addition to the everything of everything, we are not recovering from the Trump acquittal. In fact, it is continuing to be very…stirring up lots of other stuff about how the bad people thrive and are rewarded, if that makes sense. As if we are all extra walking around in our trauma. We knew the country wasn’t safe but it’s more known-known now, it was openly acknowledged that nothing fucking matters, and that wasn’t just an aspect of the last four years, that is how it works.
Even as someone who is really not even marginally patriotic, I still experienced the attack on the capitol as a kind of home invasion. We watched an attack on our home, and then, as always, there are no consequences for the people who do us harm.
I moved again, and again. I am in the tenth place I have lived just in February, and there is still one more place before March. A few more days were lost to trauma and processing and recovering.
There was pounding on the door while I was doing yoga. Was that this week? What is time. I understand nothing.
I cried at the eye doctor because I didn’t have an emergency contact to fill in. I had to look up the number of someone who is barely speaking to me because I couldn’t think of anyone.
I also cried because I didn’t know how to answer any of the questions. What is my occupation. Do I use a computer for work? When did I last visit an eye doctor, what address should they send a reminder postcard to in a year, who knows, how could a person know any of these things. Not me.
And I also cried because it’s been a month since I’ve been able to do laundry or cook. Basically there was a lot of crying this week, because I forgot how my cycle works, even though the Designated Sobbing Days (DSD, there’s a Fake Band of the Week!) arrive at the exact same time every month and have done so since the first Gulf War, but can I remember that? I cannot.
Other than that, I am just deeply involved in the ongoing question: how do I shower myself in adoration and affection to such an extent that any from anyone else is just a fun bonus, not a top-off and definitely not a drug I crave and become beholden to? Well, that’s a mystery, isn’t it. I am working on it.
Breathing for what was good, reassuring, joyful, sweet
Delicious things are delicious: the sun, the light on the mountains, the long beautiful drive to a favorite secret spot that I do on my in-between days when I have to check out of one place and cannot yet land at the new one.
Sleep is delicious. I love climbing into bed, ready to become one with the weighted blanket.
Morning bobcat time (yoga, movement, breathing, stretching) is delicious, and so are my sun salutations that put me into a stupor-trance of focus and wonder. They don’t tire me these days, they invigorate me, and that too is some sort of plateau passed.
Morning epiphanies and insights are delicious too, my wise selves talk to me in meditation, in journaling, in the shower, when I step outside to greet the sun.
My rituals are delicious.
The month of Adar is here (my birthday month, in the Hebrew calendar) and the month of Adar is for joy, and I feel it like a door. Victorious. Joyful. We made it. Good job. I am going to be forty four, which feels magical and impossible, against all odds, who would have thought, but here I am, alive and glad for this life.
This week held love, affection, warmth, insight, inspiration, hope, tenderness, sharing, kindness, smiling and surprise soup. As hard as the hard things were (and they were), I feel tremendously thankful for the treasure revealed, and hopeful for a new week. And sure, it’s Tuesday but also what is time.
And while I am sad about not having access to an oven, that is a solvable mystery and I am welcoming safe simple solutions that hold me in high regard, and trying to focus on how great it is that I want to bake again.
Imagine whispering to November Me who couldn’t get out of bed that February Havi is absolutely craving spending an afternoon baking bread. Things shift and move and get better. It’s not easy to trust that, but hey guess what, it happens anyway.
Thank you so much to everyone who sent me surprise Appreciation Money this week via Barrington’s Discretionary, it covered the terrible place I had to cancel on which was an alarming expense. What treasure, thank you! It is always welcome and if I can land in a place, I can share more writing here, that’s my preferred way to fill time; writing and hopeful thoughts.
Play with me in the comments! You know the drill…
I love company! You can always use a made-up name in the comments whether in service of safety or playfulness.
We are all going through what we are going through. So we make this a sanctuary by not care-taking or problem—solving for other people, we can leave each other warmth or hearts of love or pebbles of witnessing. I still have not figured out how to get emoji to work in the comments, sorry!!
How are we holding up? Anything hard and/or good in your week that you want to name here? Sometimes naming helps. I have found for me that taking breaths while I name things helps a lot.
And if that’s not your thing, you can say hi or name something you’d like more of for the coming week.