I’ve been gone a while.
June and July seem to be the time I have found it repeatedly hard to maintain a blog. This year I have found it repeatedly hard to find time to breathe. But… this time I am determined not to let busyness win, and to make time for writing.
This is my pleasure.
For such a fundamentally important human state, supposedly the driving force of human desires and actions, pleasure is such an easy thing to put on the backburner. To dismiss.
This week’s prompt has forced me to take a look at my priorities.
It is a fortnight since Mr Hunt and myself forged an evening together without the children, and it wasn’t a night that would top my list of pleasurable memories. We were too desperate, too in need for our own lists of desires to concentrate on what we needed as a couple or as contrasting individuals. We tried. We played. We would probably have been better served by an early night.
And we had had to carve out these weekend evenings because suddenly things had become so busy that we had switched to survival mode. What is the next task? Are the children fed; got to school; clean; emotionally stable? Have work deadlines been met? Have we slept?
We get like this periodically. Firefighting mode. We had busted through the court proceedings and technically won a properly resourced school placement for our eldest, but were too exhausted to feel the victory. The children had social work assessments. School plays. Medical appointments. Dental surgery. The au pairs were going home and I was on a deadline to recruit new staff.
Throw in to this that my body has done one of those irritating transitions and my libido has disappeared and my body has stopped reacting to any of my go to fantasies, so I couldn’t even steel five minutes with myself.
I didn’t miss pleasure. There was no time.
Every day you find yourself switching down a gear. Meals become less nutritious home cooking and twice I had to take the kids to McDonalds just to make sure they had calories before bed. The kitchen devolved. School uniform was drying around the house overnight because it hadn’t been washed in the usual efficient manner. A wank was about a 30 second rush not an hour of edging.
Why the hell would you miss sex in the middle of this, when you can’t even get satisfaction from completing a single job? When “simple pleasures” like favourite foods, or tv programmes are off the agenda? When this is compounded with the guilt of not giving pleasure to your lover, because when you get to bed they are already asleep?
Too often I let life become about the functional and I have replaced the goal of pleasure with satisfaction, and not the good kind, but the type that comes in an Ofsted report when the grade “satisfactory” simply means “no children appear to have died in this school this year”.
To get back to one state after the other requires work. Work I know I have to give even when I think I can’t do anymore, because this is not just my pleasure, this is my marriage, my relationship, the glue that holds us together through difficult times.
Pleasing him is my focus. My desire. My love. Cherishing me is his. When life shifts my energies away from this, even for perfectly worthy causes, it is harder to work as a team. Life has more clanks and creaks. We are an engine missing lubrication (pardon the pun).
I am not worried about my body playing up. Just a sign I am reaching “that age” where things are not so reliable and unfortunately the doctor’s go to answers of the pill or Sertraline don’t agree with other things I have going on. So grin, get on and buy decent lube seems to be the way forward.
Decent lube for our relationship is to drop responsibilities. But this is hard when the things we do are based on our personal values. I work as an autism advocate and specialist tutor to non neuro-typical children. This is work you do when you’re needed, and isn’t easy to ring fence into certain weeks of the year. Mr Hunt is driven by the corporation… and his work pays for everything we do, so again not much room for compromise. We physically support charities and causes we feel add value to our local communities, so I’ve spent the week editing video of the Y6 school play for our child’s school and display boards for a community event. Cutting these things is hard, because they are the places we find value for our lives.
But if we want to survive, into all of this we actively have to carve out opportunities for pleasure. Time to physically love one another through service, touch and time. To build each other up through a plethora of love languages, until we are ready to actively seek pleasure in each other. We have to be gentle but firm with each other and make concentrating on each other, even if only for fragments of moments, a joint priority.
Shared pleasure, whether spontaneously found with a new person or part of a relationship is a gift of being human. You can’t make someone love you but physical pleasure is part of the package for most people in a mutual relationship. Searching for pleasures you can give and taking pleasure yourself in the giving.
Mr Hunt supports me in my writing by asking me to read it to him, by asking what my stats are and by managing my server. He loves to find ways into my Sinful Sunday photos, models when I need him and looks forward to exploring Kink of the Week for “research”. He also puts the kids to bed when I’m in the middle of something, and washes the pots while I fantasize.
Writing is a pleasure. He supports my pleasure.
I am not going to kick myself for not managing something steamy, despite that being my aim. I need to resource myself, create a little time, and the steam will follow.
But I am going to prioritise and ring fence some time and energy for that purpose… even if what I write is not aimed at turning my lovely reader on… because unless I do that, I will forget how.