Bedtime Thoughts

November 30th, 2016

It’s bedtime, so of course, my brain has woken up. It started with – I haven’t written in a couple days because of Busy. Then it went to, it’s the end of the month. Then, what haven’t I written about from my initial list. Hard Limits and Cuckqueaning came to mind.

Cuckqueaning had come into my head when I first wrote that list, as I thought about revising my hard limits list. Cuckqueaning – the female version of cuckolding – for a woman’s partner to have sex with another woman. In the kink sense, this is often done with the full knowledge, and sometimes in front of the cuckqueaned partner, where that partner derives sexual pleasure from their partner’s relations with another.  For me, this isn’t just “not my thing,” it feels emotionally harmful to me. Not other people doing it for their own pleasure, but if a partner of mine was to do it to me, as a sadomasochistic thing.

This isn’t about my partners playing with other people, or my partners having other partners. There have been teasing “threats” in the past of sitting me on one side of the room (in various states), while a partner did sexual things on the other side of the room with someone else. It was usually laughed off, and never followed through with. A comment earlier this year, teasingly suggesting I find someone other than myself to sexually please a partner triggered extremely negative feelings. Other things were going on, and it was part of the “no time to deal with this now” phase I had myself in, so I let it go and pushed it away to deal with later. I think this is all hitting on my degradation hard limit. To me, this falls into that category of not good for me. Along with the “not ____ enough” bullshit my mind throws up with no outside help.

So, my Hard Limits are pretty simple these days, with him: Nothing that would likely end up with me in hospital or jail or morgue. No physical, emotional, mental, or financial Harm. With other people, I think my post from November 17th, 2013 is still pretty valid. Every now and then, I just find new things that fall under the currently listed categories.

 

What else haven’t I touched on? Whipping Post. Skin Time. Private Time. Art. I think I’ve touched on all the rest of the list, in one way or another. So, let’s take these, one at a time, to finish up the month. (There might be another post later today, depending on how things go.)

Whipping Post. He’s been practicing a lot with his whip lately – I mentioned this earlier this month. Trying out some new swings – one that’s really heavy. It reminds me of whipping post scenes from movies, like in Mockingjay. Obviously, he’s not taking my skin off – that’s a no-no around here, plus I can barely stand for the strikes as they are. I want to stand up to the strikes, but we’re generally out in the middle of a big empty room, nothing to brace against. Not to mention it is cold and I’m usually not terribly warmed up for that sort of thing when we’re doing it. But there’s an inkling of curiosity, morbid though it may be.

Skin Time. One of the things I really enjoy with my unlabeled partner(I really need to pick an alias of some sort) is skin time. Time to just be naked with one another. Our skin touching, fingertips brushing lightly, hands warming bare flesh. The feeling of us together, pressed close, sharing warmth and sensation fully. It is a completely different type of connection than just snuggling up fully clothed (also a nice thing to share). And it is more precious to me than I realized before I was without it for so long.

Private Time. In our busy lives, it is often hard to find private time with him. We have poly family nights, and we have practice/class nights, and we have club nights. Given our schedules and the relative locations of our homes and venues, we hardly ever ride to things together any more. Lately, though, his wife has had things to do early on our family nights, so we’ve had time to catch up before she gets home. But it’s always with the knowledge that her arrival, if not imminent, is still fairly soon.

I know, should I need to have a conversation, or some such, I can let him know, and time will be made. But the yearning is different than that, and too undefined for me to form a request. I miss having time for just us, but I haven’t the slightest idea where we could create it these days. Or what we would do with it, given everything. Once again, I’m back to the sentiments from my Asking post – figure out what I’m looking for, and remember to ask.

Art. Writing is my art. It is my passion. It is my way of putting little bits of my soul into the world. It creates happiness within me, and brings me peace. I have very much enjoyed getting so many thoughts down on “paper” and out into the world this month. Of locking my inner critic up, for the most part, and just letting myself speak my truths. At this point I’m crossing 9,500 words, not anywhere near the NaNo goal of 50K, but it has been good for me, and I hope to continue it forward. I hope you, dear readers, have enjoyed this month as much as I have.

Now, maybe my brain will let me go to sleep. 😉

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Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman

July 11th, 2013

Words of Affirmation

Quality Time

Gifts

Acts of Service

Physical Touch

 

Recently we had a book discussion night on The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman. In the book, he talks about loving your spouse using their primary love language. If your partner feels most loved when they receive gifts, all the words of affirmation in the world may not make them feel loved at all. He talks about people learning their primary love language when growing up, and also about their being different dialects to every language. For some, quality time means watching TV together, for others it means turning off the electronics and talking together. I found this to be a very interesting way to look at things, and turned it inward, to look at myself and my relationships.

My primary love language is acts of service. It’s how I speak and how I receive love. I am a care-taker personality, and find joy in doing for others. It’s why I’ve lasted so long in retail even though I hate sales(thank the gods for our stores not running on commission). My family always taught that you do things for other people. Growing up in a Christian household, Jesus’ servant leadership was always the guiding light. He fed people, washed his disciples feet. This is how you show love, I was told.

It translates quite well into my relationship with my boyfriend. My submission to him is very service oriented. I help manage crew lists and care for/carry the equipment. I help around the house. I take care of his boots and his rope. Fortunately, it does seem to be what he is looking for. He believes very much in servant leadership, has always encouraged service as a way of giving thanks. He enjoys my service and gives me opportunities to provide it. He also speaks to me in this language. He offers to drive us places. He cooks wonderful meals for me. Both things I’m not as fond of doing for myself. Sometimes the scenes he gives me are also acts of service. They are things I have asked him for that may not be exactly what he was after. Though he always makes sure that he finds ways to get enjoyment as well, because who wants to do a scene that bores them.

In my marriage, I tried to take care of the house, the finances, vacation details, etc. However, when it isn’t the primary love language of my partner, these things, while probably appreciated, are not what he is looking for. I think this was the case with hubby, his primary love language seeming to be physical touch. In this case, Chapman writes that you have to put in the effort to learn your partner’s primary love language. Often, this requires asking them what they want and need from you. Doing this can make their primary love language your secondary language.

As we all know, life is never as simple as self-help books make it out to be. So what about those other four languages and me?

Words of affirmation. I like hearing I love you, and thank you, and you did a good job. I like hearing I’m proud of you, good girl, and you are beautiful. They make me feel validated. They make my acts of service feel acknowledged and appreciated. They can even make me feel warm inside. If I never received words of affirmation, I would certainly not feel loved or appreciated. Because I feel this way, I do try to give them in return, to acknowledge others as I like to be acknowledged.

Quality time. This one is important to me. I’m a solitary person, an introvert, so I’m not looking for tons and tons of time. But I do want the time spent to be quality time. And what this means can vary. I like to go Do things – amusement parks, parties, play, travel. I also like to just be together – sit and watch TV or movies, have meals together, sleep together(yes, sleep). I’m verbally challenged, but yes, sometimes, this can also mean turning off the electronics and just talking together.

Gifts. I’m not so much for physical gifts. I mean, I like them at birthday and Christmas, but non-physical gifts are nice, too. Trips to Cedar Point. Extra time spent together. A special meal. Gifts, for me, are for special occasions, and should be more about thought than price. This isn’t a good year-round language for me.

Physical touch. I enjoy physical touch. I like having human contact. I want to hug my friends and kiss my lovers. I like giving and receiving back rubs and foot rubs. Sex can be awesome. Much of my kink involves touch. Snuggling up with someone can provide me comfort and affection. I do stumble over this one for a variety of reasons, societal or introvert-based. It is something I need in my relationships at some level, but the how much can vary greatly.

 

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Between Times

May 20th, 2013

What happens in the between times? In those times when you’re waiting for things to happen? What do you between big events? Between date nights? Between emails or phone calls or texts? Between work days? This is the time when you’re just you. You’re alone with yourself. What do you do?

I’ve been playing games lately. Brain games. Logic puzzles. Word games. Crossword puzzles. I’ve been listening to Nerdist podcasts, and watching comics on Youtube. Trying to engage my brain, because I feel old. Too old to be going back to college anyway. It’s grad school, so it’s different, I try to tell myself. Plenty of my friends are back in school these days, I say. But I worry that I won’t be good enough, that I’m not book smart enough anymore. That I have lost my work ethic after ten years in retail. So, I challenge myself, exercise the brain, and my attention span.

I also gather material for a research project of my own. To practice my ‘research’ skills, and my paper writing skills. Because I never really liked doing that in the first place. Reports and papers were the tiresome necessity of school. Whenever I could, I made them creative projects, instead of dry, factual accounts. And that’s okay, so long as you still fulfill the assignment criteria, and your professor is on board with it. This project that I’m doing for myself, and for anyone who ends up wanting to read it, will not be dry and run of the mill, I hope it will be creative and entertaining. Right at the moment, I’m waiting for a 3-hole punch, which seems silly, and highly procrastinatory of me. But I wasn’t planning on being home tonight, and I was planning on having that 3-hole punch already.

This is exactly why I worry about going back to school. But I haven’t set deadlines, and I’m better at other people’s deadlines anyway. So, I’m not really ‘behind’ on it, at least not until I actually start writing it, anyway. Or taking notes or something other than printing out reams of my past writings. It isn’t even summer, yet. Not really, not even past Memorial Day til next week. Plenty of time to get started and create deadlines and meet them. So I say.

I’m between times right now. A weekend of events behind me, a big weekend ahead of me. Application submitted, but not accepted. Plans in the works, but not to be enacted until the end of July/beginning of August. Now have six applications in with the library system. Waiting to hear back, never heard back from the first application I sent to them. So much to do this week, not sure there will be time for us. Should have gone out tonight, but waiting instead. Relaxing with these thoughts.

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What’ve You Got To Lose?

December 1st, 2011

A journal entry from earlier this week:

The longer you’ve been around, the more you have to lose. As wife, before girlfriends exist, you have everything. All the love, time, attention, interest. Then comes girlfriend, and love multiplies, but time and attention are divided, and if you’re lucky, interest gets multiplied by the extra energy. Sometimes, though, NRE can make it feel like she gets more and you get less. It can take time to rebalance.

The cycle continues for girlfriend. You get all you can until second girlfriend arrives. Then, by the needs of reality, time and attention are further divided, love is multiplied, and interest fluctuates, hopefully ending up in the positive direction. As more partners are added, balance gets harder to maintain, and needs and wants are weighed more carefully.

One ripple causes waves throughout, and if it starts as a wave, storms can appear. Tidal pools of spiraling emotions, pulling everyone down until someone catches a life-preserver and pulls the rest back up.

So, how do you survive the divisions? By enjoying that which is multiplied. By believing the benefits outweigh the cost. By being heard, even when you don’t get everything you want. By being gracious, compassionate, compersive and by compromising. Life is a state of constant change, you have to keep up and ask for the love and support you need to do so.

 

This is relevant in two, completely opposite directions in my life right now. One, hubby is down to just me. This makes the time he has to spend with me greater, though my availability has not truly changed. It may, if needed, or as schedules naturally morph over time and situation. But he and I must find a new balance, as he will be home for time I’ve previously spent alone, and he may find a desire for more of my time than he currently has.

Two, he is up to a wife and four girlfriends, and his wife is changing to day shifts next week. For a while now, most of the time divided by him, has been time she is usually at work. Now, though, it won’t be, and I imagine she is feeling the sting sharper for the amount of time she now has available and the huge chunks of it already scheduled with us. So, we look for balance, not only of time between the five of us, but of place, to give her space in her home.

We don’t have answers for any of this, yet. But we are all committed to making it work. For the love we all share, and the community we are creating together, makes us all stronger and better, and fills our lives with incredible joy.

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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.

 

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Poly Pie

October 29th, 2011

It has been a week. And once again, Thursday was too busy for me to get a post written. Two jobs is good for the checkbook, not so good for my writing pursuits. Life is full of changes. Growing, expanding, renegotiating, learning, adding, subtracting, multiplying. Relationships are the same.

He and toy are “officially dating” now. A new young woman has entered all our lives. Schedule changes are heading our way. So things are in a little bit of flux as we try to see where it is all lands. This has led to a lot of conversations. A lot of communication. And a lot of thinking and processing. Also, a lot of reacting, but hey, that’s where it all starts. Reactions let us know what’s important, and then we figure out what to do about it.

I seem to have, for the moment, gotten over my usual reaction of replacement fears to change, and have settled into a more tetchy fear of losing time and attention. More tetchy, because those things are limited. There is only so much time in a week, and so much attention to give. I started talking about it like a pie. Fearing my slice was going to get smaller, that someone else was going to get a slice, or a bigger slice, or already had, or whatever. The trouble is, that’s life, things are always changing and adjusting. I need to focus, not on, how do I get a bigger piece, or keep my exact piece, or any of that, but how to enjoy my slice to the fullest. To do that, I have to stop worrying about other people’s slices. I only have control over how I spend my own.

To that end, I tripped over an even older mental block. Asking for what I want. In order to facilitate him making decisions about those slices, he has to know what I want and need, so he can give me whatever he is able to. And in order for me to be happy, I have to take care of my own wants and needs. This means several things. First, I have to know what I want and need. Second, I have to tell him what I want and need. Third, I have to be patient about getting those met. I have several stumbling blocks in this series. Knowing what I need seems to have gotten easier, though I sometimes have trouble with the want/need line, falling on the side of, well, I don’t really Need that, I can Survive without it. I’m still working on that.

The blocks really come with telling him. A couple problems here. I grew up in a household where wants were generally not considered important. At birthdays or Christmas, you could ask for things, but other than that, only if offered. And at those times two times a year, we made wish lists and didn’t demand particular things. To say, you must get me this one thing or I will be miserable, was just not done. We made a list and we’d usually get a few things off that list, but not everything, and often things that weren’t on the list. You got what they wanted to give you. So, how does this translate now? Well, if I have everything I need, I feel selfish asking for things I want. At birthdays and Christmas, I tend to posts lists to my blog, but I don’t really ask for things directly. If I’m asked what I want (to do), I tend to come off shy or coy because I’m not used to being that direct.

The next block comes in with the third step. I’m a fairly patient person, but sometimes to a fault. I won’t ask for things if I feel like the answer will be not right now. For a couple reasons. One, it feels like a no to me, and I don’t like hearing no, so I just won’t ask. Two, because I figure I might as well wait until the answer is likely to be yes. But, as he reminds me, if he doesn’t know what I want, I am taking away his chance to decide if there’s time/opportunity for it, nor can he plan for it in the future if there isn’t time in that moment. So I have to ask, and then be patient about receiving.

To make the most of our slice of poly pie, we have to be fully informed of each other’s wants and needs. I have to grow and overcome some roadblocks, and let myself hear not now, without it meaning no. Sharing wants should be fun, describing things I like or want should be entertaining and arousing. Fantasies and daydreams come to life is what makes our lives amazing. Why would I deny either of us that?

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Polyamory & Boundaries

July 29th, 2011

It’s been a long time since I posted my reflection on the first section of The Ethical Slut, but I finally made it back to Part Two. It’s been a busy week, so I didn’t manage to get a post done on time. I’ve divided the quotes up into four sections, here is the first set. The topic is Polyamory and Boundaries.

“One of the things people get out of multiple relationships is the chance to be all of their various selves. … Being different things to different lovers, we might find ourselves having different boundaries, limits and relationship styles in different circumstances.” (123) I’ve talked about this before, how I have different relationships, boundaries and dynamics with all of my partners. Poly, for me, is a chance to explore all the different sides of myself.

“Forget about fairness.” (123) “Fairness does not mean equity.” (194) “We have to learn to give freedom to our partners if we’re going to get it for ourselves.” (174) For me, these quotes are about making agreements that work for everyone. In poly, not everyone is going to have the same boundaries or rules, things don’t have to be equal and fair, so long as everyone agrees. And it’s important to remember that sometimes, letting your partner have a little freedom will help them feel comfortable giving you a little freedom.

“You may believe that you have to take your share away from somebody else… if someone else gets something, that means there must be less of it for you.” (125) “Time is the biggest real-world limit we encounter in trying to live and love as we like.” (127) “This is not a contest, this is not a race, and no one is the prize.” (157) These quotes are around the ‘economics of starvation’ that many of us learn growing up. Dividing up time in poly is often the most difficult, it’s important to use your time wisely and well, because it is so limited just by life itself. And that goes for non-poly relationships, too. One of the easiest ways to counter starvation economics thinking, when one is being rational and not in the middle of an emotional freak out, is to remember that having more kids in a family doesn’t mean you love the first (or second, or third) less than the newest edition. Love and affection do not run out, they only grow.

“It is impossible for anyone to predict what depth of feeling may potentially exist in any sexual relationship.” (158) “Relationships change, people grow out of them, people change.” (166) “Remember that your soon-to-be-ex-partner is still the same terrific person you used to love. (171) These quotes are about the inevitable changes of people and relationships. You cannot predict when you will fall in love, or out of love. You cannot predict how long a relationship will last, or how it could change. Some relationships last lifetimes, some a few days. Sometimes people fall in love, get married, fall out of love, get divorced and then are the best of friends. Sometimes people never speak again after a relationship is over, sometimes they become play partners or close friends. Sometimes people don’t speak for a year or more after a break up, and then get married a few years down the line. Life is crazy, people and situations change. It can get a bit quantum sometimes – things defined by the way they are observed, even though they are in an ever-changing or undefinable state.

“To be an ethical slut, you need to have very good boundaries that are clear, strong flexible, and, above all, conscious.” (117) This quote is about being clear about yourself and your boundaries. You need to know your boundaries, discuss your boundaries and make sure everyone involved is clear and accepting of them. Some think that poly people have no standards, no boundaries, they just do whatever they want. But that’s not sustainable. You have to take care of yourself and your relationships, or neither will last.

 

 

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Putting Humpty Together Again

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.

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Holiday Storm

December 4th, 2010

The holiday season is full upon us, with all the busy that it entails. Family gatherings, play parties, work parties, club parties. Presents, buying, giving, donating, shopping,wrapping, mailing cooking, decorating, planning. Everyone is running at full tilt, and the weather is crashing down around us, trying to remind us to slow down and enjoy the season.
What am I looking forward to the most this holiday season? A play party? The big party at the club? Sexy lingerie? Thigh high boots? No, this year, I’m looking forward to quiet time with my loved ones. A weekend off from the club and work to spend with Hubby. A day with no parties, no responsibilities, and no drama. We’ll have a nice dinner together and see a movie, then come home and just relax for an entire evening. The Little One is coming by for that last, the holidays are no time to be alone, so she will join in on our quiet time. I imagine irreverent movies will be the order of the evening, while snuggling all together on the big fluffy couch. There is not much family time to be had lately, with all the events and scheduling and plans and work, but on Christmas, we get to stop and just be together for a day.
I was looking back at my holiday post from last year. I did an “All I Want For Christmas” post, with a wish list of things. A few of which I purchased over the last year, but most of which remain pipe dreams. At least they are still in the pipe, though, I have not given up on them. Most of my thoughts this year run towards clothes, when they get away from fixing my computers. Thigh-high boots, thigh-high stockings, sexy-but-warmer club wear, shiny PVC skirts and shirts, and winter day-wear skirts are topping my list. Money’s tight, and I still have not figured out how it will be divided up, but I think at least one skirt will find its way under our non-existent tree this year.
It looks like Daily Flashes of Erotica Quarterly #1 is still available for Christmas purchasing. I hear Amazon delivers quickly and am still waiting on my own copies from the publisher.
What are you looking forward to this holiday season? Mistletoe kisses? Wrapped and delivered submissives? Or that New Year’s kiss from that special someone?

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Stress Free Service

November 18th, 2010

Life is hectic. People are busy and stressed and full of work and responsibility. The holidays bring on schedule changes and family gatherings and bigger loads at work as the year comes to a close. There is a often a lot of preparation for Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years and all the other holidays that fall this time of year. Dinners to plan and prepare, gifts to get, parties to plan and attend, even a convention or two. All this on top of an already busy schedule that was bursting at the seams. Add to that, if you will, new relationships, new jobs, job searches, and so many shiny distractions that a ferret would look like a Tasmanian devil trying to capture it all.

So, what’s a submissive to do? The wants and needs are all still there. He wants me to have a backbone, to ask for what I want or need. To speak up and communicate. I want to be as stress free as possible and not demand things he cannot provide. I want to let him know I still want things, want him, but I don’t want him to feel bad when we run out of time, or don’t have the space to follow through. Yes, I would like more follow through than we’ve had lately, but I understand that it takes work, time and patience to get what we want.

At the end of a long day, I don’t need him to summon extra energy to play with me when he’s exhausted. I don’t need him to suddenly let go of all the stress and focus solely on me. I would just like to serve him, quietly and without demands. Relieve some of the stress, in whatever small ways I can, which in turn, makes me feel better. Because, in the end, if we are less stressed, we’ll be able to make time and space for the other things we want to do.

My old editing job gave me my final payment today. I got myself the beginnings of my own bootblack kit. Just one of the stress free services I intend to offer him.

Only one more week to get a copy according to the publisher’s website: Daily Flashes of Erotica #1.

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