January 8th, 2013
What is my endgame this year? Where do I want to be? What do I want to achieve?
Ex-Lover asked me to take 8 minutes and really visualize myself being in that space of having achieved my goals, after putting it on the calander. Select a concrete goal, set a deadline and visualize having achieved it.
But my goals from last week aren’t really concrete, that’s why he says they are more like resolutions, that’s what resolution means to him. Things you’re going to do, whereas goals are the end result. Where do I want my behavior changes to take me?
I have trouble with that. I think we all do. Defining success. Because we’re so afraid. Of failure. Of that success. Because if we can accomplish one thing, people are going to expect us to accomplish more. And if we don’t, well, then we’re useless failures. Right? No!
I set my resolution/goals at five aims. Write more erotica, experience new things, cherish what I have, take care of myself and grow stronger friendships. But where is it I want to be at the end of the year? I want to be successful, independant and fulfilled.
Okay, good start. But what does that really mean to me? What does that look like?
I’m a writer. I’ve wanted to be an author since freshman year of college. I have had short stories published here and there. I’ve been blogging here for a few years now. I put together some erotica collections last year. But what I really want, is to have a book out there, that people want to read so much, they’re not just willing, but happy to buy it. That, to me, is success.
I work non-commission retail, and have done for ten years now. These last three years have been averaging twenty hours or less a week, with no benefits. I am almost completely dependant on hubby for financial survival (for richer, for poorer, eh?), and health benefits. I have had other part-time jobs, and enjoyed them. I have looked for other employment, usually very specific ideas in my head, mostly unrealistic. This year, I am broadening my search, casting a wider net to find anything that would give me a decent salary, benefits and stability. I am not giving up the idea that it will be a job I like, there’s no point in getting new job that will crush me more than my current one, but I’m open to wider possibilities. Independance to me, is not basing my decisions on someone else’s income.
One left, fulfillment. This one is a bit more nebulous. It’s about not just settling for what I have, but being happy with it. It’s about searching out those things that I want and making them a healthy part of my life. It’s about having everything I need. It’s about continueing to grow. Fulfillment is living the life I want to have.
January 3rd, 2013
It’s the New Year, 2013, and I promised I’d start posting regular posts again, after a very odd year end. So, how about I start with goals for the new year? I prefer goals to resolutions, no one ever keeps resolutions. And once they’re broken you’re done, goals you keep working towards, even if you fall down. What are my kinky goals?
One. To write more erotica. I want to write more fiction again, heck more non-fiction erotica, too, for that matter. I want to set up tracking on the free ebooks I’ve already posted, and create enough new pieces to publish new ebooks of never-before-seen stories. That doesn’t mean I won’t still post erotica here, but I want to do more than that this year.
Two. To experience new things. Isn’t this always the case? I want to do new things this year, explore areas I haven’t yet tried. Learn things I don’t yet know. I promised my best friend in high school that I’d try anything once, in kink it seems that you should try things twice, just in case. I should come up with a list of new things to try and post it soon.
Three. Cherish the things I already enjoy. There are so many things that we do that I already know I enjoy. I want to remember and cherish those things for the joy they always bring me. The freedom and security of rope. The chemical and emotional release of pain. The sensuality of bootlicking. The endorphins of fear. The serenity of kneeling. The fulfillment of service. And many others.
Four. Take care of myself. This is always a hard one for me. I spend so much focus taking care of everyone else, that I often put myself last (notice, that this one is number four…). I need to remember that I have needs and wants, too, and that they matter. I bought two bath bombs in the middle of last year, and I have not used either of them yet. I continue on in a job that I said five years ago, I didn’t want to stay in. I have tried many things that others said I should try, but have put less emphasis on trying the things I want to do. I need to remember to put myself first sometimes, or I’ll be useless to those around me.
Five. Make more kinky friends. I know a lot of people. I see them at groups, dinners and events. But I’m very quiet and introverted, so while I am friendly towards them, I wouldn’t say that many are close friends. This year, I would like to put more focus on making stronger friendships. I seem to have fallen into the trap of only really hanging out with my poly family, and this limits my social circle quite a bit. Even writing this one scares me. My introverted brain is already creating excuses as to why I can’t do this, but I’m going to try to ignore it, for my own sake.
I think that’s a good start. What about you, my readers, what are your kinky goals for 2013?
October 13th, 2011
Last night’s class was on Humiliation Play. After, toy asked me about it. Said she was alright with teasing, but not the harder stuff, and was that what I liked? I fumbled around a bit, talking about last year, what went right and what went wrong in my head. And I think I only vaguely answered her question as my mind ran through a lot of things. So, I thought I’d try to pull it all together here, and form a more coherent opinion of my relationship with Humiliation Play.
Humiliation is on my Hard Limits list. It is not something I will even consider with most people. It can be emotional, harsh and potentially damaging. At its lightest, it can simply cause an anger response that is not generally conducive to that type of scene. At its harshest, it can leave you in a puddle for days or weeks. During the class last night, some of the examples were simple, but a lot of them were harsh enough to make some of the attendees wonder what they had signed up for.
We talked about several different types of play last night. Mental humiliation. Physical humiliation. Positive, arousing experiences. Negative, tearing down experiences. It all depends on your interests, turn-ons, and goals. Personally, my interests run the gamut, but weigh more heavily to the physical and positive side. Mental, and negative humiliation interest me as well, but only in certain frames of mind, and can be very tetchy to even attempt.
I volunteered an example last night of physical humiliation. I offered up a memory of holding his flashlight in my mouth and drooling all down it, and being forced to do so and let the drool form a puddle on the floor. I have a thing about messy bodily fluids, especially my own. And not only was I being dehumanized into a lamp to serve a purpose he wanted, I was also forced to drool all over the place because the noise of me trying to prevent such was “more annoying to him than the drool.” I like being used for useful purposes. I am turned on by serving him, whether actively and mentally, or physically as a tool. My faced burned with embarrassment at being told to quick sucking in the drool, and then being teased about the pool on the floor, but I had been doing what he told me to do, following instructions, and being useful, so I was happy.
I’ve had other scenes of being used, in various different ways. Being told I’m only good for that thing, or being made to say it myself. Being degraded for my “only use” being that single purpose, or for liking what was being done. Called names that related to the activity, being forced to call myself those names. In other times, in other spaces, those things would and have bothered me, but deep in that type of headspace, it just turns me on more and more.
The other side of humiliation play, I don’t get into so much. It’s harder, harsher, and more dangerous. It gets more personal, more deeply mental, more emotional. It digs deep into your brain and your self and can leave lasting marks if not done very carefully. Even the above stuff, can do that, but, for me, this is so much touchier. There are two reasons I will go to the dark side. One, I need to work on a personal issue. I want it shoved in my face and for him to make me stare unblinkingly at it until I can really see it. Two, I want to be crushed. I want a release so deep and satisfying, that nothing else will do. I’m not entirely sure the first reason is an entirely healthy reason to do humiliation play, but it makes sense to me.
The trick with both of these, is planning. Both parties knowing what is wanted or needed, and being prepared for it, mentally, physically, and time wise. By that last I mean, neither of these are quick scenes, and both are going to require a decent amount of aftercare, most likely on both sides. As for mentally, triggers are especially important to identify, and discuss before (possibly during) and after. In the first, going after something specific, is likely to have its own triggers, you have to be prepared for them to be pulled. In the second, there might be triggers you want to avoid, or triggers that are okay to hit to get the desired result. Communication is very important, but even with the best, be aware that you might stumble across hidden triggers, and know how you are both going to handle them.
I mentioned aftercare just above, but it is important in any kind of humiliation scene, even one that was completely arousing and enjoyable. We talked last night about the importance of knowing what you need for aftercare, both top and bottom. Last year, we created a ritual that was supposed to be our aftercare. The intention was to get rid of any negativity from the scene and transition back to reality. It had all the elements we thought were needed, and we worked to remember to do it every time. But somewhere in the mix, it wasn’t always enough. There were other things going on, I’m not trying to simplify what happened, but part of it was that I was not always successfully making the transition. It wasn’t enough aftercare to get me out of that headspace and into normal. I needed more. Point here being, figure that out. If you aren’t coming fully out of the scene (the presenters pointed out last night that a warning sign of this can be hyper-focus on a negative detail of the scene), figure out why. Figure out what else you need. Make sure you get it. Don’t feel like you’re overly needy or being a burden. If you are going to play this way, you have to take care of yourself, and your partner. Broken toys are not fun to play with.
December 9th, 2010
I had a stray thought today, of putting all my writings, emails and musings from the past three months into a book and titling it Broken. That is not to say that things are fixed, but just my way of saying that I now can see a path forward. We broke things back at the end of August, the big risk we took, came to a screeching halt and disastrous end. I broke, trust broke, our dynamic and mode of play broke. Our relationship suffered and stuttered, but we held on to each other to keep that from breaking, too. It took us more than three weeks to figure out what caused the break. I spent the next month focused on healing from that break and the realizations we came to. I then spent the last month trying to find the path again. Setting goals, making small steps, offering service, trying to find common ground, trying to get back to where we were, or where we could be again. But, while some of it worked, a lot of it was just not connecting. So, I realized that while I thought I knew where he was and what it all had meant to him, I was apparently missing something in translation. We are all occasionally guilty of projecting our understanding of events on other people, and it occurred to me that I needed to sit down and talk to him and get things clear.
The first talk was last Thursday, for an hour. The second talk was Monday, also for approximately an hour. The third talk was Wednesday, starting at three in the afternoon and lasting for over four hours, then picking up again for a bit on the drive home late that night.
The first conversation got some things out in the open, but in a way that I did not fully understand. I left that conversation confused and hurt, but trying to process both those feelings on my own. I came to the conversation with one question – can we be the way we were before? The answer I heard was no. But I was unable to understand the reasons, I was unable to ask appropriate follow up questions, I was unable to let go and react to that answer, so that the conversation could keep moving forward. I heard a request for more time and more space, and so I walked away from that conversation too early.
I reacted privately, or as I would later put it, I overreacted privately and between violent movies with Hubby later that night. I cried and I had thoughts of him never wanting to ever play with me again. I had thoughts of no physical affection. And I knew these were wrong. I knew he had not said any of those things. We had both said how important our relationship was, and keeping that going was. But I was in emotional overreaction mode, and logic was waiting for me to finish and come back.
So, I let it sit. I did not have opportunity to talk with him on Friday. On Saturday, we were at the club, and we try to keep relationship conversations away from that public eye, or more specifically, those public ears. The night was slow, and a lot of our usual crowd was attending other events. He poked me and pinched, and made me squeak and squeal for a few minutes between electric scenes, and I felt a lot better. I had physical proof that I had overreacted on Thursday night.
On Monday evening, we spent the night in the kitchen. I watched him make beef stew from scratch. We talked about other partners, and ex partners, and work and crew and everything but our relationship and Thursday’s conversation for most of the night. He was waiting for me to bring it up, he was waiting for me to react. I was trying to give him space and time, trying to have a quiet evening where I did not add stress or pressure. Again, I was going at it the wrong way.
He finally brought it up, because he had concerns and questions he wanted answered, and he was, rightfully, afraid I was not going to say a word. He told me he was concerned that I had not reacted to the conversation. I told him I had reacted, but not in front of him. I explained that I had overreacted, and what thoughts had crossed my mind and that I knew they were overreactions. I explained that Saturday’s poking helped solidify that they were overreactions. I explained that I was giving him space. He pointed out that I misunderstood and not talking about things was not what he wanted. It never is.
His biggest concern, beyond worrying that I was bottling and not reacting, was around an inequality in our relationship. I was still serving him, providing service in a number of ways, but he was not giving me the usual exchange in return. He was deeply concerned that this would change my service to him, or that I would become jaded in my service, if I was not getting the things I wanted in return. I took a few moments to seriously consider this, think about my service to him and what it means to me at this point in our relationship. The more I thought about it, internally and out loud, the more I realized that it was not about that anymore. My service began out of a desire to thank him for scenes, putting the rope away after was the very first service I offered him. It continued as a way to show my gratitude for all that he gave to me. Now, I serve him because it makes us both happy that I do so. I serve him and take care of him because I like doing so, because I love him, and because he does take care of me in so many different ways that have nothing to do with kinky interactions.
We occasionally dipped our toes into other topics during that discussion, but kept returning to the above topic. Then his wife got home and our conversation was ended as the stew was served. It smelled delicious, and the little test bites I had were wonderful. But our evening was at an end, our conversation incomplete.
Tuesday morning, I chatted with Hubby about the conversation of the previous night, and he expressed concerns that I had not fully shared my reaction (my tears) with him. Hubby and I got clear about what was discussed and that more discussion was desired.
When he asked for my reactions to Monday’s conversation, I was in a hurry and tried to quickly summarize my gratitude for his concern the night before, and Hubby’s concern that I did not tell him of my tears. I did not communicate clearly enough, and our busy days distracted us both, so we left that conversation quickly, unable to find clarity at that moment.
Wednesday afternoon, I went to him, to speak in person and clarify Hubby’s upset and my reactions. I went step by step through my reactions, from Thursday night up through our ill-timed chat on Tuesday. I was reminded that while I am responsible for my emotions and my reactions, he cannot help me deal with them if I don’t tell him about them. And he wants to help me deal with them, and he wants to help me understand and not be confused, that is the only way we can move forward. He did not ask his girlfriend to back off, it was the kinky part that needed space.
Once that was settled, we moved on to my specific reactions, and confusions and misunderstandings. I told him things I had heard and not understood. I heard a suggestion that my offer of returning the paragraphs was a day too late to be accepted. He truly had only meant that it was ironic that I had made the offer a day after he realized he had been waiting for it for six months to no avail.
I heard him say he would think about suspending me privately, but not publicly. I reacted with hurt and confusion and tears. And this turned out to be a very important point in the discussion. This was the best illustration for me, that actually allowed me to hear and understand where we stood. This turned into a conversation about how deeply things had broken and how shattered the trust was. He was able to explain to me in a way that I could understand, that the trust that was broken by our object play, had been based on the trust we had created in the high flying suspensions, which had been based on the trust built by the static, simple suspensions that began our play together. With the shattering of that trust, it needed to be built back up again, and so, logically, a path to do that would be to return to the beginning. I had made offers of varying degrees, but all of them were too much, to far forward. What we need to do is return all the way to the beginning, and build trust anew. I have often reminisced about those quiet, simple, spaced-out suspensions. Flying is awesome, in every sense of the word, but my favorite memory is still a quiet dark night in his basement, hanging with him nearby. Looking at a simple ceiling suspension point, I feel the quiet pull of floating, bound securely and so free.
Our relationship is very different now than it was when we first started. In both senses of that word. When he started suspending me, I was new. new to the community, new to him, new to rope and new to suspension. When we started object play, we had just started dating, we had just started figuring things out as more than play partners. Everything was fresh and exciting and worth the risk. We knew there were risks to our play. RACK and all that. We acknowledged that this was play too risky for our primary relationships. We knew it could destroy our newly formed partnership. But we were willing to take that risk. We went running in with all the energy that NRE entails. And we had a good run, we explored and pushed and played. Then we crashed and burned. Fortunately, we had been together long enough at that point that we were able to cling to each other in the wreckage and not lose the romantic relationship we had created.
Now, as we look at starting over and rebuilding trust, we glance at the future, at where we might go. And we look at the past and where we have been. That kind of risk, that kind of danger, may no longer be palatable. We are deeply invested in each other now, in staying together and protecting each other and what we have created. We go forward from here, much more cautious about the risks we might take. Much more thoughtful about the dangers and rewards of anything we might do.
The conversation then turned to a touchy point. Is there a risk that I could go elsewhere for the type of play he no longer offered me? The thought had crossed both our minds, with varying reactions. I do not play out much at all. I don’t go to play parties and find random hookups. I don’t make play dates with people outside my relationships. And I am not looking to add another partner. I like the number two. Three was lovely while it lasted, but two is what feels right to me when I think about the future. He pointed out that when you’re not looking is usually when it finds you, but there is no use worrying about what might happen. I am not looking to go have my needs met elsewhere, and as I don’t intend to let him go, we have plenty of time to see where we can go and what needs and wants and desires we can meet.
The end of our conversations wandered around to him poking me to keep talking, seeing as how I was being so open and honest and it was going so well. I hit on the topic of labels. In my musings since Monday, I had considered recasting his concern in the terms of I was still submissive to him, but he was not returning dominance towards me. My brain, in that light, then wandered over to the label In Service To. I shared this with him last night and he grabbed it quickly. Asking if that was something that was important to me, because that was something we could address.
I considered it for most of the rest of the night and some more this morning, both out loud and to myself. Back when we first established our relationship, labeling what we were was important. I wanted to be publicly acknowledged as his girlfriend and his submissive. My other partners had already identified me as his submissive, but I wanted him to say so, too. That leads to the other point. Certainty. Knowing my role, being able to say what I am to him, how we both agree that we view the relationship and connection. There is another aspect to the label as well. Being his. I wrote in one of my last five hundred word emails, that I while I was still acting submissive to him, I was not feeling like His Submissive. There is something special about that feeling, of belonging. Not that I want him to own me, Hubby owns me, heart and soul. But the acknowledgment that my submission, or my service is for him, special to him and to us. I know that this is important to me, because while I was writing it, all the doubts and self-conscious thoughts of last night were silent in the face of writing how I really feel.
All the king’s horses and all the king’s men, may not have been able to put Humpty together again. But they were impatient and not vested enough in Humpty to put forth the effort to find that one big piece to form the base from which he could be rebuilt with time, love and care. Love is not all you need, but it is a good base to start from, and stronger than hundred mile an hour tape.
September 24th, 2010
A day late, but hopefully not a dollar short, my dear readers. Yesterday, life and a missing power cord got in the way of my posting. It has been quite the roller coaster ride for me lately, but what would life be without some ups and downs? Today I’m going to ramble about my partners, communication and decompartmentalization, we’ll just have to see where that takes me.
This past weekend was a big event that I did not go to. Two of my partners did, with their other partners, and everyone had a blast. The trouble came, in my own mind, when Lover played with someone I did not approve of. He told me that afternoon that he was going to, I expressed some hesitation at the idea, but did not fully express my concerns or feelings. He had no idea, therefore, that I had any concerns or negative feelings. When he came back to me two days later, he was caught flat-footed by my angry, incoherent emotional state. This, eventually, a few days after that, brought us around to a discussion of my needs around his play partners. Our agreement has always been that he will listen to what I have to say, but I do not have veto power over him, none of his partners do, nor visa versa. I asked to modify that agreement, so that not only will he listen, but he will be sure to ask in advance with enough time for discussion, how I feel about an upcoming play partner. I needed time to process, get clear and feel heard before he played with this person. It also probably would have helped to know why he had chosen to play with her. We agreed that we would try to do this going forward. Communication can prevent a lot of unnecessary upset.
My weekend was about simple goals. After last week’s discoveries, I needed a way forward. Having large goals of communication and self awareness are good, but he pointed out that they are not quantifiable or immediately achievable. He wanted me to come up with things I could point to and say, look, I met that goal. Simple things, one step at a time. Friday, I stayed with be of service, I was available to him for whatever he needed or asked of me that evening. Saturday, I had more specific goals. I wore my latex skirt for him. I kept it shiny for him. I pleased him, was a body pillow for him and slept by his side. These were both girlfriend goals and submissive goals and they were all achievable and rewarding.
I have often written of keeping my partners separate, especially around play. Occasionally more than one will be at a play party or at the club, but generally, I am able to focus on one at a time, and I have taken steps to guard that. However, this week, those steps created a situation that caused upset on several fronts and I was forced to rethink my position. One particular division I had created, was now creating a public division, and I needed to think long and hard about whether that was appropriate. After discussions with all of my partners, I decided that it was time for me to change and grow. I decided to let go of the control I was holding so tightly to, and trust that we could all do what was best for everyone, while still meeting all of our own needs and wants.
It has been a a week of learning, growing and better communication. Not everything is sorted out, but the future looks bright and I am lucky to have this life and these men, all of whom are willing to work hard to solve problems and communicate clearly. Everyone knows how hard that can be. Writers do not all make the best verbal communicators, and they are all willing to accept, understand and help me with that.
August 12th, 2010
He asked for an evening of service.
I began to plan. What types of things could I do for him? What would he enjoy? What would be most useful? He cautioned me to not get too specific, to have a general idea, and remember that things do not always go as planned. (Sometimes it feels like they do not Ever go as planned.)
This was easier, making general plans of service. I would be visiting at his, so I took each area of the house and came up with an offer of service, depending on where he wanted to be and what he wanted to do. Lawn work and gardening for outside. Organizing and cleaning for the basement. Dishes and cooking for the kitchen. Cup holder, foot stool, foot rubber and/or story teller for the living room. Oral pleasure for the bedroom.
Not having a structured plan, but simply offers made the evening go more smoothly than it might have otherwise. Work ran long, we got together late, and he spent some time reminding me that I cannot jump over the steps right in front of me to get to ones I think he wants instead. I did, however, get to serve him. I helped him a bit in the kitchen and I rubbed his feet in the living room. Most importantly, I got to spend time with him, but it got me thinking about service and what that means to me.
In the second post I ever made, Serving Him, I talked about him labeling me a service sub, my struggle with that label, and my acceptance of it through the joy of serving him. Last November, I wrote about Service Space – the warm fuzzy happy space I am in when I am serving and giving to others. In April, I wrote about including service in my Ritual to come out of object space.
What does service mean to me now? Why do I do it? How does it make me feel? Who do I serve? When do I serve? (Yes, I wanted to see if I could get all the question words in.)
One side of my service is serving in exchange for what I have been given. I was once thanked for taking care of him, and I simply responded, he takes care of me. I serve him because I am grateful for all that he does for me, and sometimes in gratitude for a specific thing/scene he has done for me. At work, I serve our customers in exchange for being paid. At the club, I am a Service Top in exchange for the chance to learn, teach, share and be part of the crew.
On the other side, serving makes me feel useful, gives me a purpose, a goal to achieve. I enjoy doing for others, and generally put a higher priority on that than on doing for myself. I was brought up to help others, to be a caretaker. The people in my life are very important to me, and if I can make things a little easier for them, or make them a little happier, by serving, then I feel fulfilled.