Ever since that slow day in january I have been following the siren song of pleasure over all else. I buy rose-and-bergamot scented soap. I eat handfuls of fresh chickweed and toyon berries with the dew still on. I sleep under the moon. I wear long skirts that make me feel beautiful, even though they are slightly impractical for the 14 miles of cycling I do daily. I stop at the park and lift weights, even though I have always felt a little silly about being such a devoted exerciser. Only shallow girls are fit, I told myself. Well, no more. I love exercise! I can exercise as much as I want!
The things I have discovered on the pleasure path! First, the world responds. Almost instantly. Everyone I meet, from grandmas to gorgeous tattooed marathon runners (more on that later!) flirts with me. My pace is slower. I sleep better. I am kinder. My house is cleaner and my garden is blooming and I am careful to leave the places I have been more beautiful than I found them. Turns out, when I'm happy, the whole world is happy! And---newsflash, Dweller---after thirty some years on the planet I have finally learned that the world is not going to make me happy. That responsibility lies with me.
So I do. Make myself happy. Today I wandered across the hidden hills that bracket Culver City, barefoot, making my own path. I found a hidden hollow beneath a nicotiana tree and meditated for a while, then took off my clothes and lay back in the waist-high grass to take in the sun. There was a gentle breeze, and a slow-stepping deer who slunk past, and nary a human for miles. I have not felt such freedom since high school.
Mamas, we come first. The joy we can give ourselves magnifies; it blesses our children and consecrates the earth we walk on and the people we touch. I feel so lucky to have discovered this. Pass it on!