Owning My Shit

August 22nd, 2013

A friend of mine posted recently about his young son, after being yelled at, saying “Daddy, I made you angry.” He then had to pause and reflect on his anger and tell his son, “I am angry, but you didn’t make me this way.” He realized that his anger was his own reaction, not his son’s doing.

I get cranky sometimes, at things people say or do. We all do. But it is important to remember, this is how you are Choosing to react. It is not the other person’s fault, it is a choice you are making. When people get cranky at me, my gut reaction, is to get snippy back. This is still a choice, it is a learned reaction, by my own choice.

Today, I chose to be more aware of this behavior in myself. The only way for me to unlearn this choice, is to teach myself something else. I cannot control what other people do, I can only accept them for who they are, and choose to react in a way that serves me better. And in the end, this will serve my relationships better than adding negativity to the cycle.

This also goes along with holding grudges/holding onto hate/dislike for someone. If you hold on to negative feelings for someone, especially someone you don’t actually ever interact with, it is doing nothing to them, and only harming yourself. If it is someone you do interact with, you may feel justified, by making them feel as bad as you do, but look around, you’re making life miserable for everyone else around you, too, not just the person you’re mad at.

Something I am working on with all of this, is to analyze my reactions. Why did that upset me? Why did I react that way? What is really going on? In the moment, these are very difficult questions to remember, let alone answer. Sometimes the answers go along the lines of “it ruined my night” or “time is limited and precious” or “it’s not fair.” But then I have to ask, but did it really? Is it really? Usually the answer is no. Usually whatever negative thing happened only darkened that moment in time. Usually there is plenty of time left, or coming, or the ultimate optimistic thought: “we have the rest of our lives.” And let’s not even get into trying to define “fairness” in life. Every person is different, every relationship is different, fair is a ball hit between first and third base. Trying to define it anywhere else is ludicrous.

Sometimes the answer to “what is really going on” is envy or jealousy. Both normal, human feelings. And, as has been stated many times before, and being the point of this post, what matters is what you do with that feeling. Becoming angry or upset, lashing out or freaking out, will hardly ever get you the result you desire. I know, I’ve tried. 😉 When those feelings rear their heads, it is time to sit down with myself. To think about why I am feeling that way, and what I can do to resolve those feelings. Do I need to ask for something? Do I need to work towards something? Do I need to take a deep breath and just remember all the wonderful that I have?

I am in charge of my own happiness. I get to decide to be happy, or not. I get to decide how I react to stimuli. I get to decide how I express myself and all my crazy emotions. And I get to decide who I share all of this with.

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Negotiation Win

August 21st, 2011

It was the night. Finally time to fulfill our bargain for a 50 cent pair of scissors. Time to face the music and dance, literally. Bag packed, ready to go. He calls, needs help with the gear. We get it all loaded and head to the club. Wait for the owner and then lug it up and set the stages. The instigator is all bouncy and excited, she says she’s going to explode. Casting about, we finally decide everything is ready and drag toy off to the bathroom to change for the evening.

We can’t remember if there was any exact wording on the shirts, so we do our best with buttons, bras and tying. My skirt is even shorter than I remember. Instigator helps us both with our hair, pig tails for me, hello kitty barrettes for toy. Fidgeting and fussing, and we’re ready to go. Out the door and into the back corner where he sits with hubby, to show off our outfits and drop our bags. The grin in his face matches the light in his eyes as we stand before him. And only intensifies as he has us each turn and bend over to check for appropriate skirt length. Approval is granted and then the fire class begins and we gather to listen.

Class comes to a close, and our performance is announced, massage tables are cleared and instigator’s laptop is set up at the edge of the stage. I drag toy up as he explains what is happening to the curious crowd. There are a lot more unfamiliar faces than I expected, but I’m not really looking at them. Finally, it is ready, we take our places and press play.

The song is ridiculous. Japanese that toy and I have barely learned to pronounce about falling in love and seeing the world in a whole new way. We have macarana-esque parts, and kick lines and spins and air guitars. Everyone is laughing and his smile is huge. I try to look up from the screen when I can, but I’m terrified and don’t manage it nearly as much as I wanted to. But we got through the whole thing, and all fell down together at the end. Then curled up into a cuddle pile around toy, laughing our heads off. I don’t even know if they clapped.

Once we pulled ourselves together, we gathered our things for the bootblack competition. Now, earlier in the evening, instigator had asked if she could borrow my china marker for this, and I, feeling snarky for having to sing and dance, told her, but it’s a competition, aren’t you prepared? To which she replied did I want one boot to not look as good as the other? And I, feeling more snarky, said, don’t worry, I’ll fix it. So, still teasing a bit, we find a quiet space in the back to set up our supplies, turning a couch so the light is better, if not great.

He finished his conversations and came back with toy. Sitting down, he offered us each a foot and pulled toy down next to him for his entertainment while we worked. I’m not sure I’m a real bootblack, I just love his boots. Instigator’s far more inclined to clean up any boots that pass her way with a polite request for service. So we set in, scrubbing and rubbing. I start noticing some strings, but my scissors were broken. Instigator is burning the strings off her boot with a lighter. Hm. Hey, can you do that on this boot and you can use my china marker? She agrees, I can’t even just ask to borrow it, I’m phobic of sparks. She has a little extra fun making it spark to watch me twitch, burns her thumb and my arm on the hot metal as we are working in very close quarters. Then we oil and shine and whiten. Making them as shiny as we can for an oil tanned boot. Re-laced and done, he sets off to the front room for judging with toy, leaving us to clean up and drink some water toy has brought.

Returning a short while later, he says the reviews are mixed. Mine is a better shine, but speckled. Hers is more consistent, but duller and there are some buff lines in it. Toy just can’t decide who won and lost, so we give it up as a tie, both wishing we’d had better light.

Next up, massage, and there’s just the thing, a king-sized padded table nearby. Toy fetches her massage lotion and he drops his shirt and lays down. We surround him, them on his back and me on his legs. Their hands are stronger and his back is always the most knotted. In silence, we put all our focus on him, working his back, neck, legs and arms, circling around him, doing our best to pull out his stress. He turns over and we continue, upper chest, shoulders, arms, hands and legs. About the time my hands have given out completely, he looks up and smiles

Now it’s his turn to have fun. He grabs me in one hand, toy in the other, and pins instigator with his legs. I lose track of what is happening to toy at this point and only hear her moans and whimpers and Thank you, Sirs. Instigator is pinned by one leg and the other is being used to kick, poke and prod her. A boot-spanking, if you will. Me, he has by the throat to start, eyes closed, one of my hands clutching his arm and I gasp and squirm in his grip. He holds me close, turning to count occasionally, sending me spiraling into orgasm. Kisses and I love you were interspersed with numbers, the moans of the others, and the sound of his boot hitting flesh. He moved his grip to my hair, less of a fear reaction, rocketing up arousal and sensation. Still the round robin of pleasure, he raises me up to see his boot on instigator’s throat. Beautiful.

There was a moment, his grip maybe slackened or I opened my eyes a little too wide. I saw what was happening to the others, and I had a shot of envy for the physicality of what he was doing to them. Before I could process it much further than that, his hand tightened in my hair, and he counted to three. I buried my face in the mat and orgasmed through tears. When I came up again, the energy and reality of the moment reclaimed me, and the negative feeling was gone. I was in his grip, against his body, two of my best friends were sharing in this wonderful scene of pleasure, pain and orgasms with a man we all love in our own way. Just incredible.

I loved the sounds. The slap of his boot, the screams and moans and gasps, the words from his lips: I love you, 1-2-3, fucking your brainto go, taunting instigator as he found new places for his boot . The sound of his breathing as he took a moment for himself. Toy’s thanks.

We cuddled up together, me, instigator, him and toy. All lined up and snuggling. Still occasionally handing out orgasms, playing with programming, appreciating all that we had. Not someplace I ever really pictured myself ending up, but it was just right in that moment. The four of us together.

Time to rejoin the rest of the party. We gathered our stuff and headed back out to the front room. Put away our gear and gathered around in the electric area. His boots are “dirty” from kicking instigator. She offers to lick them clean again and starts to work. Toy and I look on, not really boot lickers ourselves. Then he grins and points me to the nearby violet wand. A straight rod and turned on. I hand it to him and he zaps her a few times, insisting she keep working. Tormenting her until he gets a better idea. Handing me back the wand, I’m to shock her at his direction. She stays more focused on his boots when the rod is coming from the other direction, but it’s still fun to make her jump.

Boots shinier. What else haven’t we done from the agreement? Bondage. He takes instigator’s tie and secures her hands, tormenting her with one hand and holding her other until he finally hands the tie off to me, wanting both hands free. He puts a mask over her head and we are all impressed that it fits over her hair. Then moving me around the wall to hold her hands above her head so he can return to using his boots. His tool of choice on her for the evening. He asks if anyone wants to take her place? Absolutely, I reply, unable to see what exactly he’s doing, but not really caring, her moans are delicious. He finishes her off, and sets her free after she starts squirming her hands as though the tie has become uncomfortable.

Then orders me down on his boot. It’s been a long time since we’ve done that. I kneel on his boot and he goes to work, rubbing and kicking as I moan gasp and writhe, focusing on staying on my knees with hands on my thighs. Alright, time for your favorite part, you have permission to get yourself off on my boot. Thank you, Sir. I ride the boot more intentionally now, moaning and arching into an orgasm. One more. He moves with me a little and I curl up, my head against his leg as another orgasm washes over me.

We are interrupted then, and he has to go move his truck. I sink into my position. Knees wide, hands on thighs, palms up, back straight, head down, eyes closed. Calm, satiated, joyful. I sink hard. I’m aware of instigator beside me, and only barely of toy curled up on her lap. He is only gone for a few minutes, but he doesn’t come right back. I hear his voice throughout the room. I sneak glances beside me, I can still feel instigator, but I want to see that toy is still there, too. His keys jingle louder and he returns, standing in front of me, a single kick to the crotch and I’m awake. How are you feeling? Aside from the eyelets digging into my left foot, I am very good. He motions me up and we all settle in, curled up and relaxing waiting for the club night to end.

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Jealousy & Fear

August 3rd, 2011

I was going to do the posts close together, but things keep getting busy. So, here’s the second post on The Ethical Slut, part II. This one focuses on Jealousy and Fear.

“No one can own another person.” (117) An important thing to remember, whether or not you are poly. You do not own your partner. (We aren’t talking about Master/slave ownership agreements here, that’s another discussion.) You are not responsible for their actions, and your every moment is not about each other. It would be a rather boring life for most of us to spend every waking moment with only one other person. There are jobs, and friends, and family and hobbies and a myriad of other things that are part of life. You share your life, poly or not, with many people, things and activities.

“Jealousy may be an expression of insecurity, of fear of rejection, fear of abandonment, feeling left out, feeling not good enough, or feeling inadequate.” (134) “[Jealousy] is a part of you, a way that you express fear and hurt.” (137) Jealousy is a normal human emotion. Everyone has jealousy at some point in their lives over something. It’s natural. And it can tell you when something is important to you. If it wasn’t important, you wouldn’t react to it.

“We imagine we know his thoughts, when in fact we are thinking about our fears.” (121) Our imaginations are great creators of fear. Sometimes, our imagination just leads us to silence or inaction. I can’t be that, he’ll say this. I can’t do that, she’ll think this. I can’t ask that, he’ll say no. How do we know? We don’t, we’re just projecting our fears onto our partner.

“You actually don’t know what your partner is doing. The images you see in your mind are the perfect reflection of your own fears.” (149) Our imagination gives us false impressions of what our partner is doing with others, or while out of our sight. We are afraid of what they are doing, afraid we’ll be hurt by it. “It helps to ask, “What am I afraid might happen?”” (131) We might imagine that the other person is better at it than we are. That they’ll enjoy it more with that other person. That we will pale in comparison. We might be afraid that he won’t want us anymore, or won’t want to do a certain thing with us anymore. We can really let our imaginations run away with us. That’s why communication is so important, before and after. So that we can stay in touch with the reality of a situation.

“What are the specific images that disturb me the most?” (148) It is important to figure out what triggers your fears, insecurities and jealousy the most. To identify major issues, so they can be named(often this, is enough to take the power away), discussed and perhaps disarmed. Or, if not disarmed, perhaps agreements can be made around them, to the benefit of all involved. No one wants to make their partners unhappy.

“Jealous might actually be envy.” (134) “When I’m not taking care of getting what I want, it’s easy to get jealous and think that someone else is getting what I am not.” (137) Are there things that you want that others appear to be getting? Are you asking for those things? Can you work out a way to have the experience you are missing so that you aren’t envious of the other person? It is important to take care of yourself, and your wants and needs. Don’t give jealousy any more footholds than it already has.

“Sometimes jealousy has at its root feelings of grief or loss.” (134) This goes back to economics of starvation, for me. Feeling like I’m losing something if someone else gets the same. Jealousy over fear of loss. I have to remind myself that someone else getting something does not take away from what I already have. And, it can even strengthen it.

“If you try to pretend that you are not jealous when you are, others will perceive you as dishonest, or worse yet, they may believe you, and see no need to support and protect you.” (138) “Denying your jealousy can lead you to act out harsh feelings in ways you will regret later.” (138) Expressing jealousy can be painful, but denying it can be damaging. It isn’t easy to admit you are feeling negatively about your partner, but letting negativity fester only makes things worse. If you can admit to it, you can then talk about it, and get through it. Together. A shared burden is easier to carry.

“The way to unlearn jealousy is to be willing to experience it.” (139) “You can feel jealousy without acting on it.” (140) Like any other emotion, jealousy does not have to take over. You can feel it and see it and deal with it, without letting it control you. This can take practice though, and time. And you have to want to. You are in control of you, even when you feel out of control. Ask for help when you need it, and jealousy is nothing to be afraid of.

“You and your partners need to practice talking about jealousy.” (151) I’m not sure how to practice, but talking about jealousy is the best way I know to get through it. Getting your feelings out, having them acknowledged and supported, if not agreed with, and then having help getting through them, is a great feeling. But that’s the next blog post, Emotions and Validation.

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