I don’t even really know how to begin. This is a subject that hurts my heart and fills me with sadness and worry. It’s a struggle I face every day, a constant reminder that I made epic mistakes and poor choices. It’s a regret that’s hard to face.
My oldest daughter is very intellectual. She’s a bookworm, very analytical, a true type A, perfectionist personality. She not very huggy/touchy/feely and doesn’t express her emotions well, except in private with me. She gets embarrassed easily and can be very timid and shy, but struggles to put forth a strong front all the time. It must be very hard work. In short, she is me. The old me. The one I’ve struggled so hard to leave behind. And it breaks my heart.
I’ve always been very affectionate and expressive with my girls and encouraged them to do the same. I do feel like we communicate pretty well. However, I see my oldest daughter struggle; her social interactions with others suffer and I see her stuffing things away. I see it in her eyes. One of the first things I did not long ago was sit down with her and ask her if she was happy. She said she was, but was honest about some worries about school and explained that she’s really hard on herself. I explained to her how I used to feel the same and do the same things. We talked about expressing feelings, even if it’s just with me for now, asking for help and not stuffing things away. I’m not sure how much she really heard and understood, but I thought it important to do anyway. She needed to know that I’m open, available and I recognize that the old me didn’t work, not just at home, but in the rest of the world too.
I don’t really know how else to proceed. I just keep talking to her, being honest, encouraging her to communicate. But my heart hurts. I know how it feels to be like that. I want more for her. So much more.
I’ve mentioned a few times that over the course of the past several months, I’ve felt all my old “armor” has been striped away. I feel raw and exposed, yet safe and protected, able to express myself freely. The flip side of that is that I also feel as if I am walking around with skin made of sand, my emotions barely contained, just below that sandy surface. The slightest wind or rustle blows it all away, exposing me, bare naked. There is still a part of me that jerks to embarrassment and feels weak. I can usually get over that pretty quickly, but not always. I feel so strongly now, bursting almost. It is a gift and a curse at once.
So many things in my life have changed, it’s almost overwhelming some days. I think that’s part of why I am so emotional, getting used to the changes, feeling comfortable in my own skin, living mindfully to please him. One of the biggest changes I’ve experienced is with my body. I’ve lost a lot of weight over the past few years. I was heavy, bigger than him. I really didn’t like myself for a really long time and it showed. Now, I’m 5 sizes smaller than when we married. I’m smaller than him and feel wonderful all the time. However, it’s still easy sometimes to feel like that woman who was big, stuffed with all that ugliness.
Along with those raw emotions, I have a guilt that surfaces sometimes. I often feel like Pavlov, like I trained my husband to walk on eggshells, always trying to please me so he didn’t have to suffer the consequences of pissing me off. That manipulative nature is still there, I just don’t listen to it anymore. I recognize it and choose another behavior instead, most of the time.
All this relates to the control/compliance dynamic for us and here is an example from today. I don’t have many clothes. I have to ask for things now, so he went with me to buy one pair of jeans. I choose some skinny jeans to try on, out of the norm for me. I’ve never owned any nor would I ever have felt comfortable trying them on. But, now I can, I’m much more confident. What I want most is to look good for him. I really don’t care at all what anyone else thinks. He has expressed a desire to help me choose my garments, thus him coming along. So, I put the jeans on, consider that they look much different than anything I’ve ever owned, but I like them. They feel good and they’re cheap. I open the door to where he’s sitting and ask what he thinks. He replies, “I like them, but they’re tight.” My brain instantly decides this is negative, but I don’t get angry or hurt just yet. I ask him what he means, could he elaborate. He says they look good, but not comfortable. Again, I’m wondering….is he worried about how they feel or is he saying they’re too tight and maybe I need a bigger size. Dammit, this is complicated and it shouldn’t be. Do they look good or not, it’s simple, right? So I tell him this, “Don’t worry about how they feel, I will worry about that. I just want to know of you like the way they look.” And, again, he repeats what he’s already said. I don’t get angry or lash out. I simply say thanks and shut the door. And cry. Big, ridiculous tears in the damn dressing room. That insecure woman inside is wondering why I can’t just take what he’s saying at face value. The guilty woman inside is wondering why he can’t just answer without worrying about my comfort first, I’ve had a hand in why he can’t just have his own opinion. And I’m so damn naked and raw I just keep crying. Over jeans. I wipe away the tears, pack up and don’t buy anything. I don’t pout or stay angry. But, he knows something isn’t right. Our daughter came back from strolling the store, so we tabled the discussion.
A bit later we talk. I tell him about the guilt I feel. I tell him I really just want to please him and wear things he likes. He tells me he does worry about my comfort, not just how the stupid jeans feel, but that he’d feel selfish telling me to buy something he likes but I’d feel self-conscious in. He also reminds me that he’s a grown man with a mind of his own and he can think for himself. I promise to never say I like something if I don’t. He promises to tell me if he likes it with no qualifiers. We both apologize and agree that we’re still learning and it’s over. Just like that.
Then, he ambushes me in the bathroom, bends me over the sink, gives me several crazy hard spanks and brings me pleasure and release so quickly I was stunned and lightheaded. I guess that’s make up sex, right?
We have a very active sex life, it’s been this way for quite a while. Since we began living more within the control/compliance dynamic, we can’t keep our hands off of one another, all the time. We are always touching, connecting in some way.
In my rules, he specifies that I’m to express my desires freely. Last night though, I bit my tongue. Earlier in the day, I had written him a very naughty note. I won’t go into the specifics, but this is how it ended: “Always, when I think of you like this, I’m wet and wanting. Today was one of those days.” I think I throw him off guard sometimes, mostly because he’s not used to me actually expressing my craving for him. He likes it though, he told me, so I continue. After an entire evening of stolen kisses, caresses, grabs, smacks, and lots of naughty whispers, we finally get to bed. I crawl in naked, that’s the rule, and he tells me to turn on my side. He snuggles in, we talk a bit, he touches me he says some of the most wonderful things, then GOES TO SLEEP.
In my head, the “before” me is frustrated and PISSED for a minute. The couple nights before this, he’s had me do some things in the bedroom which exert more of his control, things that please him. This pleases me to no end, that he’s comfortable taking control and voicing his wants and I’m able to please him. But last night, I wanted more. While he was snuggled into me, massaging and caressing me and saying such wonderful things, I’m quivering and in my head, my words were, “That’s so sweet, now fuck me like you own me.” But, he was visibly tired and sore from work and I bit my tongue. In another life, I would have found a way to manipulate him into feeling bad, with just a sentence. A few words. My fear of rejection would have fueled me to elicit something from him. Last night, I snuggled in, heard his beautiful words, reminded myself I wouldn’t die of horniness, and went to sleep.
Of course, this one night out of a bazillion nights, I DIDNT WAKE UP AT 3am. DAMMIT!
I lay on my side, his arm under my head, a living pillow. My back curves into his chest, the soft hair wisping my skin with each breath. Our hips and knees locked, my legs curled up and around his, one foot resting on top. His arm folds over me tight, his hand squeezing mine just under my chin. His chin is resting near my ear, his breath like a metronome, lulling me to sleep. We fit, just right.
We whispered to each other in our dosing state some of the goings on of our day which we hadn’t had the chance to say earlier. We laughed at some of the silly things the girls had done today. I tell him I love him and that I’m happy, that I belong right here, in this bed with him forever.
Just before he dosed off to sleep, this is what he whispered in my ear….
I love that you steal glances. I see you.
I love that you have fire in your eyes again. Good fire.
I love it that I know you want my hugs and that you want to give them.
I love it when you shudder, do you know when I mean? (I nod)
I love it that you shiver when I kiss your neck.
I love spanking you.
I love it when you clench your fists in pleasure when I spank you.
I love the little moan you make with each spank.
Wake me up at 3am if you’re up. You don’t have a choice.
I love you,
Does it get any better than this?
I’m happy, were happy. But, it’s more than that. It’s difficult to put into words, actually, just how different I feel. In everything, not just how I interact with him, but how I see the world in its entirety.
It was and is a conscious choice for me to make positive changes. Ultimately, my thinking has changed, which affects my emotions, which affects my behavior; it’s cyclical. And wonderful and odd. This cycle, it includes him, because he feels it too. We feed off of and fuel one another, like instruments, a cacophony of complimenting chords, creating a melody we sway to all day long.
All that armor from “before” is gone. I feel bare, yet protected. Raw, but safe. Free to express myself and an almost obsessive need to do so….thank goodness he’s an amazing listener and communicator. We’ve been inseparable, always talking or sitting together, playful and joking (he can’t stop swatting my bottom, I’ve no complaints), helping one another through trivial asks, offering support, fulfilling desires and the list goes on. I think this is me. This is the me that was buried so deeply for so long. The me he saw all along.
Instead of always wishing something were different, I am hopeful because I know things are different. I feel like I have a tool box full of tools I magically know how to use. They were there all along, I just didn’t have the courage to pick them up and try them out. These tools help me with every interaction, every task, every decision in every part of my life. I see it all through a new set of eyes.
I like what I see.
Willy Wonka says it best:
Willy Wonka: But Charlie, don’t forget what happened to the man who suddenly got everything he always wanted.
Charlie Bucket: What happened?
Willy Wonka: He lived happily ever after.
After much reflection, some much needed family time and some laughing at myself, I have some clarity.
I don’t feel fraudulent.
I don’t feel like this is a costume.
I feel like we are a work in progress and that’s okay.
I feel at home.
This is work. It is difficult, and feels like a roller-coaster ride at times. Yet, it feels worth every single ounce of work. I own my mistakes.
Sometimes, life gets busy, we get preoccupied with kids, work, etc, and get a distanced or a disconnected feeling. We seek out the connectedness from one another, and it feels wonderful.
This feels scary right now. It throws me off balance sometimes. Certain circumstances or discussions or behaviors give me a glimpse of “before.” I feel raw, exposed, and emotional. I’m embracing those feelings and he is too. I didn’t even know I had this many tears.
We don’t fight. We have discussions that go to the heart of the issue and we figure out how to get it resolved. He is firm when needed, I need him to be, he wants to be. I listen, even when the issue or his firmness throws me off guard (so far). No stuffing things away to pile up or ignore.
I’m happy, we’re happy, my children are happy.
It’s been a very merry Christmas. The gifts I received required no shopping, no wrapping paper, no gift bags. Yet, my heart is overflowing and I could want for nothing more. I realized today, that every day can feel like Christmas.
I think I know how I feel.
At this point in my life, I’ve stripped most drama away and don’t care too much what people think. Last night, after that talk with my sister in law, I cared for a moment at least. I love her and we’re close. I was thinking to myself that she must think the whole D/s dynamic is ridiculous. I was also thinking that if she felt the way we feel she might not think it was so ridiculous. It was only later, after I thought about what she said that I felt fraudulent. Like maybe I’m identifying with this group of people, but I don’t belong. I know control/compliance is a spectrum and we all fall wherever it is we fall. I know I’ve become more compliant. I’ve released so much control. I’m not so sure I’m submissive in my actions all the time, or if I ever will be, but in my head that’s all I dream of.
Funny thing is, all day long at the Christmas function I noticed how well my husband and I navigate social settings now. There is an energy between us, an unspoken ‘knowing” feeling. I noticed how well we navigate one another, so in sync, a closeness so deep. I know we are moving in the right direction. Most days I feel like what we’re doing is how we should have been all along, or at least it’s how we’re meant to be. Other days it feels like a costume were just trying on.
Today, we celebrated Christmas with my husband’s family. At one point, I was sitting at the table having a conversation with my sister-in-law about our respective sisters. We were relating to one another’s crazy stories, when she mentioned her sister’s mother-in-law. She said the mother-in-law was poisonous to her sister because she kept telling her she should submit to her husband. I just smiled and listened to her story.
Then, it got me thinking. My immediate thought was that the submission she spoke of couldn’t possibly be the same as what we’re doing. I was obviously afraid they might be the same. Because then, I would be living the same kind of submission my sister-in-law just said was crazy. I guess I was caught off guard. I hadn’t really thought it might be a topic of discussion so soon for me or ever for that matter. I realized I’m not prepared for these situations. Not because I don’t know what to say, but because I didn’t realize how I’d feel.
I don’t know how I feel.