The definition of hedonist is someone who seeks pleasure and believes the pursuit of pleasure is the most important thing in life.
When admittedly the most basic of transcript appears to be the English language …So what differentiates a hedonist as opposed to someone like an optimist or even an opportunist?
Shouldn’t pleasure be something we all seek? Yet in reality we either fall between two blurred lines.
The self seeker or the giver.
My main battle has been that I wish to see those around me seek a life of joy, of fulfilment, of realising their greatest, wildest dreams.
Yet I somehow have struggled with the worth to realise it for myself.
I was speaking to my mother today who sent me a gentle reminder that we were never meant to live a life guided by guilt.
Especially when we have no say in the circumstances that made us feel guilty.
As a self confessed perfectionist, oldest child, seeker of control and order I continuously scrutinise myself before anyone else, as a partner a friend, mother and colleague.
The night before my father died I cursed the universe for everything wrong and losing my father the next day in it I felt I had cursed myself.
My year went from bad to worse and little did I realise the burden of guilt I carried that somehow made me feel his passing was ultimately my own fault for my careless words has been carried with me for months.
I was punishing myself for something I had no control over.
Many who know me well would ask how can I remain optimistic though the pain? My innate grip on hope in a bigger playing field has been a definite driver.
Yet seemingly it still resonates with me that maybe it’s ok to allow myself to pursue joy and pleasure in the journey of life.
Isn’t that our whole purpose on earth to simply enjoy it… as women we continue to slander each other, ourselves and yet the greatest imprint we can leave is to allow ourselves to find joy. Is that not what we wish for our friends? Our children?
So today I am on a bus headed to the city for the simple fact I have made a decision to do something for me. I cried at the gate for leaving my daughter for a few days after everything she has been dealt in the separation to her stepfather and whom has clung to me for her own reassurance in a world I tried to protect her from and I hugged my mum for believing in me when once again I felt the world try to rise against me and prove me wrong.
I am determined that for the remainder of this year I will be a hedonist, not just an optimist or even an opportunist. For the greatest model we can be to others is to believe we deserve joy and even pleasure in every moment we have been given.
Now that I have the time I am committed to live each moment the way it was intended… As though I owned it, created it and were accountable to it. A hedonistic opportunist that even when the glass is half empty or half full the wine is worth savouring.