Mirror, Mirror…

October 5th, 2015

A couple quotes for thought today.

“It is the obvious which is so difficult to see most of the time. People say ‘It’s as plain as the nose on your face.’ But how much of the nose on your face can you see, unless someone holds a mirror up to you?” ? Isaac Asimov, I, Robot

“Life would be a lot simpler if you liked the people you were supposed to like.”

I get so frustrated at him sometimes, when I’m upset, or stressed out, and he holds that mirror up. Because I just want to be upset or stressed out for a little while. I want comfort, not solutions. Not permanently, just for a little while. But that’s not who he is. Don’t get me wrong, he is definitely willing and able to give me comfort if I need it. But he is also definitely not willing to let me wallow in self-pity or stress, when there’s no reason for it. Especially when it starts oozing out of me and trying to infect those around me.

I don’t need him to solve it for me, but sometimes, I need him to point out that I’m not solving it either, and I ought to be, and I can. And sometimes I do need him to help me solve it, if I’ve got too much on my plate, and he can help with some of it. I just have to ask. But sometimes it takes that damn shiny mirror for me to see.

Liking who “you are supposed to like” goes back to societal expectations. If this were the norm, I think marriage rates would be higher, and divorce rates much lower. The idea is you would like the person who is right for you, and not the ones who weren’t. Like the one you married and no one else. But we humans have a fascination with the dangerous, with risk, with the grass on the other side of the fence.

For my parents, I was supposed to like a nice, successful boy who faithfully went to church every week. For society, I was supposed to like just one man, after maybe dating a few, one at a time. For my poly world, I was supposed to like those with interest and availability that matched my own. But it’s never that simple, eh?

Then again, what fun would life be if it was simple. We are problem solvers. We thrive on figuring things out, on challenges. If life were simple, it would also be boring, IMHO. One last quote for the day:

“Life is pain, highness, anyone who tells you different is selling something.” ~Westley, The Dread Pirate Roberts, Princess Bride

Share

Two Steps Forward, One Step Back

March 29th, 2014

Seems like reality is always a step behind intention. I set my mind to something, and then I fuck it up once more, just for good measure, before I can really move forward again. It solidifies things, though, makes the problem clearer, and forces me to find real solutions instead of just words. To make plans, create lists, and really see the full scope of the issue and what needs doing. So there is that, at least.

The weather needs to stop following suit, though. Ready for spring, and it’s supposed to snow again today. Not looking forward to driving in the mess.

I don’t have much to say this week. That’s why I’m so late. It’s my spring break, and I’ve kinda just been laying low. Relaxing and not thinking about much of anything. I’ll try to post an erotica soon, it’s been too long since I’ve written a story. Didn’t even manage to submit to the anthologies I planned to these last couple months. So much work with school has diverted my creative juices. Only so many spoons available. Time to find some more.

 

Share

Brain Swirly

July 12th, 2012

Brain’s a bit swirly today. After vacation and some really rough conversations, I’m all over the place. But the Elust digest is a little too far away to not post something this week.

Hubby outed us to his Mom. First with rope, then the whole thing. Kept dropping hints about his DJng events until she finally had to ask what events. She did not end up bringing it up the rest of the week, so maybe reading 50 Shades of Grey did her some good. Who knows. We did not tell them about Poly, though we were open with everyone else about our lifestyle. I only felt judged once, and I’ll own that feeling as my own story creation, no way to know what was really going on in his head.

I commented last night that my German teacher in high school ingrained in my head the difference between “can’t wait” and “can hardly wait” and to this day, I can’t help but correct myself if I use the wrong one. But there are two more meanings to take into consideration. Often people say “cant’ when they mean “won’t” or when they mean “don’t want to.” All four of these phrases have different meanings, and different resolutions. If you can’t wait, then you have to go now. If you won’t wait, then you will exercise your will and go. If you don’t want to wait, you might still do it anyway, and if you can hardly wait, you usually will. It also brings to mind the phrase “If you think you can or you think you can’t, you are right.” If you keep saying you can’t do something, then you never will. Even if the truth is that you can hardly do it, or you don’t want to do it, or simply that you won’t do it. If you don’t believe in yourself, then you’ll never try. And what fun is that?

The other topic running around in my head is passivity. I am a mediator, a problem-solver. If someone comes to be with a complaint or a problem that they don’t want solved, they better be up front and clear with me that they aren’t asking for help. And they better be prepared for me to be annoyed that they don’t want to solve the problem. I’m not saying people can’t come to me with reactions, and feelings. I am sympathetic, I will listen, I will provide empathy and comfort. But I don’t like wallowing, and I won’t always agree with you. If you want my sympathy, I will give it, but I have to know that is what you’re after. If you come to me repeatedly for sympathy over the same problem, I will get annoyed at you, and ask you to stop dumping on me. I will insist you solve the problem. And no, I don’t consider wallowing in self-pity or anger because it’s your problem, not their problem, to be a solution. You have every right to be angry or sad or whatever, but I also have the right to encourage you to stop it, and find a way back to happy. I have a very positive world-view. I think happiness is a choice, and I really don’t understand people who think it isn’t. Yes, I sometimes wallow and get lost in the darkness, that’s why I surround myself with people who are good candles and mirrors. Because I need led out occasionally, too. I don’t like seeing my friends upset, and I will do everything in my power to help you, but I will find it hard to understand if you don’t want that help.

On a more positive note, I still need to get final confirmation and details worked out for featuring COPE in Modern Dungeon Quarterly. Issue Three will be out in just three weeks. I’m getting really excited for COPE. There are some vague, some solid and some ever-mutating plans in the works. And I still have no idea what I’m going to wear! It’s Steampunk themed, and I certainly don’t have anything to fit that. Though, with no club for the foreseeable future, my fun clothes won’t all feel so over-worn by September. On another clothes topic, how in the world am I going to go to Cedar Point in a skirt? Things to ponder.

Share

Needs, Wants, Emotions and Logic

November 3rd, 2011

I don’t know what to post about this week. One of my best friends suggested monkeys. I’m not all that into animals, and monkeys tend to be into scat play, as well. So, I’m just gonna ramble a bit. Whirligig, whirligig, spin spin spin. OpenOffice tells me that’s how it’s spelled. Wants and needs, where’s the line? Emotion is to reactions as logic is to solutions.

Needs. There are physical needs: food, water, clothing, shelter, air. There are emotional needs: love, self-worth, respect, and happiness. Then things get a little muddy. Or perhaps they already were, as meeting those emotional needs can mean a lot of different things. And I tend to get a little muddier around happiness, though I put it on the list. Happiness is nonnegotiable, in the long term, but is unrealistic to expect every moment of every day. Things go wrong, arguments happen, mistakes get made, people get hurt, tragedies occur. But when all these needs are being met, including happiness, it’s hard to feel like life is all that rough.

Then there are the six basic human needs that they talk about in the kool-aid circles, let’s see if I can remember them: Certainty, Variety, Significance, Connection, Growth, and Contribution. I only forgot significance. And, according to Mr. Robbins, everyone puts very different value on these six things. Personally, certainty is the top of my list, followed by connection(love). The rest jockey for position regularly, with significance generally(but not always) coming in last in the broad scheme of things. They say opposites attract, so you know, with certainty at the top of my list, I’m attracted to people for whom variety tops the list. I couldn’t say for certain it is the Very top for all of them, but it certainly seems to rate high.

The ones I rate lower, I tend to feel cross over the line from need to want for me. But it’s that line that gets a bit fuzzy for me. I want to learn new things and grow, but do I need to? They say if you stop learning, you’re dead, but active growth often gets put on the back burner for me. I want to contribute to the world through my writing, but I don’t need to. I appreciate every private message saying how people enjoy my blog or got something out of it, and every comment that gets posted, but if it was really a need, wouldn’t I put more work into it? Significance is trickier. As long as I am important to the people who love me, do I really need to be important to anyone else? Given what I enjoy doing, and what my family do for a living, I’d say staying off the national or world stage is probably best for everyone. Variety. It’s true that I enjoy new things, that I like a lot of different kinks, that I’ve often had two or three partners. So, I certainly enjoy variety, to an extent. But I’m not someone who goes to a big event with a dance card, or is looking for many partners. I don’t want a stable, I just want all my needs and most of my wants met.

So, what about certainty and connection. Well, connection basically means love, and I’ve already listed that at the top. An absolute need. Certainty is what drives me crazy. Look no further for emotional break down than for me to not know what is going on or what to expect. Now, I don’t mind a bit of spontaneity, I enjoy unplanned scenes. But if I don’t know where I’m sleeping on a night, I get a little antsy. If I don’t know how bills are getting paid, I freak out. If a new shiny appears and I don’t know her intentions, or his, I get all wibbly-wobbly. (OpenOffice doesn’t know how to spell that one.) If I’m told something might happen, maybe, but I don’t know what, I get all nervous and jumpy. I like plans. I like lists. I like schedules. And yes, sometimes it’s really hot to be grabbed and dragged off at a moment’s notice for some unplanned, but much needed stress relief.

So what about that line? Needs – Wants. If I have all the physical needs, and emotional needs, and certainty met – is everything else just cream on the top? How do I judge happiness being met? Play makes me happy, not playing doesn’t necessarily make me unhappy. But not playing for a long time can. Or not playing when I really, really want to can. But then, I control my reactions (usually), so if all else is good, not playing shouldn’t make me unhappy. There’s always tomorrow, tends to be my rational to achieve that. Private time with him and hubby makes me happy. Not having that private time on a particular day is disappointing, but it’s not the end of the world. Spending time is always happy, but that doesn’t make not spending time a necessary sad. I think I’ve lost my point in here somewhere. I’m trying to sort out whether play, time and private time fall under needs or wants. Given their relationship to happiness. Which isn’t only direct, they also affect the health of the relationship, which is a source of happiness. They are all ways in which affection and love are expressed, but a lack of one does not equate to a lack of love. Most often it is a lack of time, or opportunity. So, they are not necessarily needs in and of themselves, but are wants which fulfill both the needs of connection/love and happiness.

Then we get down into specifics. Specific types of play, or time, or private time. Specific types of affection and attention. Those are certainly wants. None of them is specifically a need. They are, again, ways to get needs filled, and we often say “I needed that,” but I’d say they are strictly on the want side of the equation. We are referring to the emotional need that got filled by the action when we say we needed it. So, it seems, by my rambling, that for me, the more general a thing, the more of a need it is, and the more specific, the more it lands in want territory.

Toy commented to me she’d been advised to feel her emotions before solving problems. I agreed with this statement. Often, I react emotionally to things, and on the surface, I think the problem is one thing, but as I’m reacting and talking about how I’m feeling, I dig deeper and find the real problem. If I try to solve the problem at first reaction, often I end up trying to solve the wrong problem, or even one that doesn’t really exist. So, I’m learning to ride through the emotions, often getting him to help me dig into them, so I can find out what’s really bothering me and deal with it. A brown leaf, when cut off, doesn’t fix a poisoned root.

The other half of that, is if I ride through the emotions, feel them all and let them rise and fall. After it is done, then I can be logical and find solutions. Nothing drives me more crazy than when I’m reacting and being emotional, and he throws logic at me. I’m often not ready to be logical, yet. Though, sometimes, it’s enough to snap me past the emotions to the point of logic. Other times, I just need to cry, let it out, get all the emotional baggage out from behind my eyes and between my shoulders, or I’m just going to be useless and run in circles. Emotions are good for finding problems, logic is good for solving them.

 

Share

Recreating a Ritual

September 1st, 2011

I fight with my own brain a lot. I’ve got stories in there, from childhood, that are false. I’ve got societal conditioning that I judge myself by. I have emotions arguing with logic. I have a care taker warring with selfishness. And I have a tendency to obsess and over think and over analyze when left to my own devices.

Last fall, I set myself to writing 500 words every day. Eventually, it just became circular and unhelpful. I was not processing, I was just rehashing over and over. I starting having that problem in my daily meditations earlier this summer. I was dwelling on things, over analyzing, and focusing on any problem instead of doing something about it because I was stuck there on my knees for half an hour. That’s how I felt, stuck.

So, I stopped doing it every day. I lost the original intent, the good, and could only see what I had turned it into. I was afraid to kneel. Afraid to let my mind focus that sharply on myself, because I had gone into self-critical mode too often. I got busy with more hours at work, and editing projects, and and and. Finding more and more excuses not to take a half an hour a day on my knees.

This bothered me. I shouldn’t use the past tense. I’m still doing it. And it really bothers me. I was afraid he would ask me. And one day, a few weeks ago, he did. And I told him I wasn’t doing it as often as I should. And it took me a few days to be able to verbalize why. And that bothered me even more.

He asked me to kneel for him, all those months ago. To kneel for him, to think about our relationship, and to have a time every day to feel a connection with him, even on days where I did not get to see or talk to him. Kneeling, for me, has always been a sign of my submission, it’s what I told him I enjoyed, and why he set it as my daily ritual. I still crave it.

So, problem identified, solution desired. What do I do? I need to make a new commitment to the ritual. Start again, recreate the habit, and make the time for it. What else? I tried music, to focus my mind in a more positive way. This worked somewhat, but I need a better selection. I have tons of CDs in front of me, that shouldn’t be a problem, just a process. Okay, but that process could take time, and that could provide me with more excuses. How else can I make this time a positive experience and get past the negativity?

Here my mind gets a bit flippant. Think happy thoughts. List all the wonderful things about our relationship. Refuse to dwell on problems, there is plenty of time for that off my knees. Create a mantra to force away negative thoughts. When I was first building up to thirty minutes a day, it would get so intense that I would repeat “my pain for his pleasure” over and over until the time was up. It kept me going, even though pain was not the point of the exercise.

I think that’s the key, this is a positive ritual, it’s not about pain, negativity or problems. It’s about submission and a wonderful relationship, both of which I enjoy and value. There is plenty of bad in the world, but this is about the good in my incredible life. He used to send me off to kneel when I was flustered and frantic, and it would calm me. Creating a habit entering this ritual with a positive attitude will be even more valuable to me.

Share

Are You a Wildmage?

September 16th, 2010

I am a geek. He looked at me and asked if I get upset when my D&D character does something wrong or bad. I said of course not. He asked what is the difference? I said that was a character, a game. He pointed out that being object is just a role I choose to play, and a lightning bolt hit me in the head.

Are you submissive? Yes. Are you an object? No.

The second should not have been a hard question, nor should it have had so many wide ranging implications, but it was and therefore it did. No, I did not think I was an object, but yes, I was trying to be one. Trying really damn hard to be one, and be a perfect one, without the error and failure that is inherent to being human. We knew I have a perfectionist streak. What we did not know, is that I had gotten lost in the intoxication of the fantasy, and had forgotten that object was a role, not a goal. I enjoy thinking for myself, making my own decisions, being a smart ass, loving, living, playing and serving. Object is one way to play and serve, but it is far too limited a role to wear all the time. I am so much more than that.

What problems was this causing?

Because I was not keeping the line drawn between fantasy and reality, I was not divorcing object’s actions from self. I was carrying baggage from our scenes back into my day to day life. I was carrying guilt and blame from play into reality. Instead of using our transition ritual in the way it was intended, to shed the trappings of object, I was gathering it all up to pile on self. Self gave way under the pressure a few weeks ago, and we had been scrambling to figure out what had caused it ever since.

Viewing object as a part of self instead of as a role to put on also led to problems with the transition into object space, as well. I had trouble identifying the boundaries between submissive and object. I had trouble communicating when I was going from one to the other. I thought of object as a deeper part of my submission, so one night, even though I felt objectified, I did not identify that as a need to begin object space.

Another problem was keeping my focus in object space. If we were in public, I would give him priority, but I was also still interacting with other people fairly normally. When I would turn to address him, I would not always have my object role firmly in mind, nor his as owner. I would drop Sir, or be thinking of him as boyfriend. This loss of focus and loss of role had the potential to cause hurt to us both.

What are solutions to these problems?

One solution to the problem of leaving object’s baggage with object, is in properly using the transitional ritual he had me create. Looking back at my post about the creation of the ritual, I was more focused on limiting drop from our scene. Limiting its effects on my other partners. He spoke of relieving girlfriend of any lingering guilt for object’s actions, but I don’t think I really understood that as well as I do now. The ritual I created worked for my needs then and it covers current needs as well. The gratitude not only serves to simply be grateful for what he gave to me in the scene, but can also serve to acknowledge it as just that, a scene. Service, which often was discussing the scene to help us both process, was intended to give me time to deal with the emotions and reactions to the scene in the immediate, so I did not carry them with me back out into the world. Connection, to reconnect with him as girlfriend and finish the transition out of the role of object, back to the reality of self.

The solution to the second problem is self awareness. Staying aware of my self even while transitioning. Being very aware of what it feels like and being able to communicate that clearly. I need to keep in mind that not only do I need to take on the role of object, but at the very same time, he needs to take on the role of owner. He can only do that if I clearly communicate with him. Owner/object does not work if both roles are not fully taken at the same time. We created verbal tools to do this, my saying Sir, and his confirming with me, or his asking the trigger question of Aren’t you under dressed? and my confirming with a Yes, Sir. If he is pushing me mentally or physically towards object space, it is up to me to let him know when I arrive. He cannot know my mind, and so I must. I must be aware and clear and able to communicate with him, before, during and after a scene.

Solving the third problem is something I have had a constant struggle with over the last seven months. I had it tackled for a while, having problems only with volume and clear speaking as opposed to staying in state. I think this is part of the same need for awareness, but in this case, not just awareness for myself, but for him as well. I have a responsibility to maintain my role as well as keeping his in mind. This is not a part I can equate to gaming, we rarely stay in character at the table, and I’ve had very little experience with LARP, but theater on the other hand works. I was in a lot of plays as a teenager, and while I never had a big part, it was always important to stay in character on stage, no matter what you were doing. You don’t address your fellow actors as your friends, but only as the character they are currently playing. Sir is the verbal tool here as well, a reminder of role in every sentence I speak. A requirement of the character I have chosen to play.

These are not the only problems, nor the only solutions, but they are a place to start.



Share