My life revolves around places within about a 3 mile radius of my home. Aside from that small area, I hate driving. For me, this feels needy, which is a little difficult to swallow at times. My husband is pretty awesome about it and prefers to drive, so it usually works out. But, I’ve found myself, over time, waiting on him to go places, arranging my schedule or expectations to put him in the driver’s seat, which is odd for me. This is new territory, dependence.
Tonight, I have to drive my daughter to a gymnastics meet, which is a few hours away. I feel like a big baby, but I really don’t want to drive and I’ve actually been anxious about it all week. It’s had me thinking, though – over the past several years, so many things about me have changed and moved in this direction, some intentionally and others just naturally.
Ten years ago, I was faced with a huge career decision. I worked in the correctional field and a couple years prior, I had taken another promotion that seemed like the right thing to do at the time. My oldest daughter had just been born and I took the job while still on leave (I broke my tailbone giving birth, so I was off a while), which was a huge mistake. It was so difficult to prepare myself mentally for beginning a new, more challenging job while I was also preparing myself to leave my baby and continue to heal my butt. These were the first real ‘girly’ feelings I ever admitted to. I never expected to feel so strongly leaving my baby in someone else’s arms and going off to work. I’d said as much so many times, that I could never be a stay at home mom, but that was before I was actually a mom. So, I was overwhelmed by these feelings of abandoning my child and anxious about the new job, the new hours, the level of commitment and time I’d have to put into it. My husband had just taken a new job as well and it was truly one of the most difficult periods in our lives.
Things settled down a little, but I hated my job. It was about paperwork, not people, and stood for everything I hated about the system. Almost two years into it, the institutional system began a reconstruction again and was implementing lay-offs. Newer to the position, I was going to be on the list, based on seniority. With a little research, I figured out they had made a significant mistake in their calculations and I could keep my job…..if I told them. I even confided in one of my bosses to confirm it. Ultimately, I talked with my husband and the lay-off wasn’t going to happen for several months, so I went back to school for the few classes I needed, didn’t tell anyone about the mistake and started my own business.
For a while, our world was pretty chaotic, but it was all worth it. Things went well for the business right from the start, I feel very fortunate. This was a pivotal point in our lives, the point where things really began to shift, develop, and take shape. I had been the primary bread winner, so when I started my business, we had to financially support that start-up and the beginning months until things took off. At the same time, my husband’s career was taking off and he was promoted again. Now, he has continued his upward climb and my business has remained steady, but he is the primary bread winner.
As this financial shift occurred, other things shifted as well. My work allows me more time at home and I get to spend more time with my girls. I’ve also taken on all traditional female roles in the household, all the things I swore I’d never do, that I’d insisted he share in. And, for a very long time, we did share them all, but they’ve slowly shifted all to me, willingly. Weird. I even learned to be a good cook (better than him, but don’t tell him I said so). He transformed as well. As he gained confidence in being ‘the boss’ at work, and I felt confident in my shifting role, his confidence level in everything increased. He’s good at being in charge, he’s one of the most patient, level-headed and reasonable people I’ve ever known. He’s also an exceptional problem-solver and decision maker. In our daily lives, we’ve learned that he is good at managing the big picture, especially making decisions for us, while I’m good at the smaller, daily tasks. So, that’s how it works here. Our roles have drastically changed, mostly as a natural progression due to life circumstances, but we welcomed and nourished these changes, they felt right. The rest, for me, was intentional mental and emotional adjustment in order to simply be happy and afford us the opportunity to enjoy one another as we should, instead of pushing at him so often. This D/s stuff, it was a natural fit. We were already on a path, one that lead us right here, labels or not. We just needed some information, a hefty shove and a little support.
Now, I don’t just feel connected to him, I feel tethered to him. I feel dependent on him and I don’t mean just financially, it’s in all the ways he is supporting, especially emotionally. While it’s still odd and it makes me a little uneasy at times, I’m all in.
And, I still don’t want to drive tonight, Argh!