There was the Feminists’ Revolution in the 60’s.
Then came the Fitness Revolution in the 70’s.
Here we are in the midst of…wait for it…*drum roll*…The Pleasure Revolution.
Pero teka, teka…
Important Note: Pleasure is not Sex. Sex is sex. Pleasure can be sex but it’s NOT just sex.
Wow. I said the word “sex” five times and I’m not even halfway done with this post! Here’s what’s happening, before I lead you down the rabbit hole…erm, let’s change that. Before I lead you down the dark alley…wait, that doesn’t sound right either.
Ulit. Ulit. Rinse and repeat.
Here’s the thing: Like most of you, as soon as I hear the word Pleasure, the S-word pops up, too. But as Regena Thomashauer more popularly known as Mama Gena says in her TEDxFiDiWomen Talk: Sex doesn’t always mean pleasure. Pause. Especially for us women. And cue knowing-laughter.
Here’s her very kitschy yet fun and very informative talk about The Pleasure Revolution. If you don’t have much time, go straight to Minute 10:00.
Why do women fold on their pleasure? Why?!?
Because nobody taught us.
I was raised in a very small town and, yes, Catholic. Goals, good. Hardwork and good grades, very good. Sacrifice…well, here’s your very own set of angel wings! Pleasure? Let’s go to church for confession ASAP.
Hay, naku. Saklap.
Thank God – and no, White Bearded Man w/ Big Booming-Voice, I’m not talking to you! – the studies are out! Stress hormones kill. The antidote: Relaxation. Bliss. Pleasure.
For me, my simple pleasures are visits to Chapters, my favourite bookstore. It’s reading my favourite authors’ words. It’s driving a good car on a good road with a good view; destination not necessary. It’s getting myself my little paper toys: journals, school/office supplies. It’s hanging out with kids at the movies then getting those cutest Minions from the movie Despicable Me! For BIG pleasures, it’s a visit to the spa, a trip to a new destination with treats like dark chocolate or a simple trip to the grocery store. Yes, even grocery shopping is now pleasurable because of the cooking pleasures, another new one. And yes, the S-word, too, when the mood is just right.
I learned in my twenties, thanks to Meditation and the New Age lit, to find bliss where I could. Sometimes I’d remember. Most time I’d forget. Which is why it’s been hit and miss all these years. I’d get to open the proverbial box of goodies when it was a little too late in the game, you know, when the water’s been boiling over already or hairs have been pulled. Sigh. When we know better, we do better.
The ignorance of us women needing pleasure is/was at the bottomline of all my emotional struggles. When things got a tad too “pleasurable” (i.e. too much joy/success/good luck) I’d self-sabotage so as not to feel the pain of guilt and reprimand. It comes with the territory. It’s subtle. Simply because it’s been ingrained into our psyche. Our very DNA has the stamp of pleasure being a bad thing! The phrase “guilty pleasures” says it all.
There is a worldwide epidemic: Women are in despair. Women are suffering from, at best: self-loathing (i.e. I hate my belly fat!) and at worst: chronic depression (i.e. I wanna die!) I know this to be true because you can find me, on any given day, traipsing this line that dangles just north of Hell and maybe, just maybe, once a year usually on my birthday when women are allowed some pleasure, I am on a day off from it and can welcome feeling good about getting pampered.
Absolutely no blame here, my dear. I have a family that supports me 100%. And at forty five, I know this is all me. Me and my thirty two gremlins living inside my head.
So what to do about this piece of new information? Keep it close to my heart, our hearts. Keep this very, very close, this precious golden key smelted from our golden hearts! It has just been granted to you and don’t lose it. It just opened another door towards our evolution and growth and when we grow, our loved ones do, too!
“…pleasure was the missing light bulb in the string of Christmas lights that ignited everything…and when I saw its impact on every cell of my being I knew that I have found my calling…”
Thank you, Mama Gena. Thank you women of all shapes and sizes and spiritual slants for allowing your shiny calling to come through.
As I allow mine to do the same, I wish you all sorts of joy and pleasures your woman’s heart can hold AND unfold!
Courage in creativity AND in taking pleasure,