Sensory deprivation of sorts. Maximizing pleasurable sensations to deny less pleasant sensations. Floating, floating, floating…
A long weekend visiting my sister, T, in Florida. I brought The Boy along for a little rest and relaxation – he’d been working hard at his job for over a year without time off. He was out on the boat chasing big fishies with T’s partner, The Captain. T was in her office, posting grades for her graduate class.
i was in the pool, sprawled on a raft. My face covered with a hat to prevent further sun damage. i let the sunscreen do the work on my appendages. Warm to the bone. It would have been downright hot if i didn’t have my hands, feet and arse dunked in the cool salt water beneath me.
Floating, floating, floating… Warm in the sun, cooler when a cloud happened to get between us. Bouncing like a slow-motion pinball when i’d hit the edge. Spinning a little, with assistance from the gentle breeze. Somewhat Brownian motion.
In that moment, i could account for the well-being of the people who occupy a substantial portion of my brain space. Mom? Glimmer of hope regarding the home renovation, now in the fourth year. Her health? Shitty, but stable. The Girl? Doing well with her new job, and surrounded by good people. The Boy? On a boat, chasing fish on the ocean. Studley? On the same boat, sharing the adventure and chasing fish. My sister, T? Settled comfortably in life with her partner, The Captain, after a fairly difficult run last summer.
In that moment.
Eyes covered. i let the sun warm me, and the water cool me, and the wind spin me slowly around the pool. My frame of reference was skewed – “am i facing the house, or the waterway?” Absolutely certain that i’d echo-located the sound of the central air compressor, i knew the house was to my left. Peeking from under the hat that covered my face, i was surprised to be pointed squarely toward the waterway.
i played this game over and over. The sound of the yard man’s leaf blower from across the canal. Confident that i’d kept track of the source of the sound as i slowly careened across the surface of the pool. Another peek. Another failure. Floating, floating, floating…
The game kept me squarely in that moment. No need to drive away dark thoughts and worry about what lies ahead. The sun was warm. The water was cool. The breeze was gentle. Letting the pleasurable sensations take charge. All was well in that moment.
Floating, floating, floating… Lightly toasted, completely refreshed. i heard the boat approaching the dock and went to greet The Captain and her crew. i had been in the pool, in that moment, for three solid hours.
None of us are big enough to stop the world from turning. Sometimes we can make it feel as though we’ve at least slowed it down…