One Hour at the Kitchen Table

“Autumn, I still don’t want to do this. You still have this place flicking between the kitchen and that leather sofa.”

“Isa, I believe this is worth the effort. This place hasn’t been solid since the void after the space station. I’m glad that it’s still functioning at all. I was worried we lost it for good. Which do you prefer?”

“I like the kitchen. The sun shines through the window. I know it’s small but it’s just the two of us for now. It feels like there could be more. I can see grass and trees beyond the window. It’s peaceful just to look out there.”

“Alright. I’ll do my best to focus on staying in the kitchen.”

“Thank you. You just flickered it to the sofa again, I know you are trying.”

I make an effort to think back to the kitchen and pour myself a cup of coffee. Square table, hard chairs; it is a tiny kitchen, more of what I’d expect in a cottage. I pull out the chair and sit. She’s sitting down with her fingers interlaced looking out the window. Why are we here in this place; what does it represent? “Better?”

“Yes.”

“I want to explore your relationship with being a slave.” I pause. I really want to explore what I suspect, that it is a role she’s used to keep from having meaningful and intimate relationships. I see puzzle pieces in her journal and she’s the only one who can explain them. “Can you remember the first time you embraced the word ‘slave’?”

She frowns at me and shakes her head. “It wasn’t with Aries. I mean that was the core impulse but it wasn’t slave-like. It was, I wanted to please him. It was desperate and happiness and it made me feel good like I was worth something. ”

Isa stands up and sets the kettle to boil. As she leans against the counter, I watch the emotions cross her face, confusion, sadness, and avoidance. “It was with my husband before we married. You know the fights we had. You caused most of them. And I was left trying to figure out how to be better, to be what he wanted. All that was left for me was to become what it was he wanted. And it didn’t work. He didn’t want a slave at all!”

I nod and look down. I don’t want to face my own role in that, not yet anyway. The truth is I abandoned her too many times and left her on her own. Cradling my cup I sip, contemplating what to say. “What does it mean to be a slave to you?” A heartbeat of time passes “I mean, is being a slave the same as being in a relationship to you?

“What? No. Of course, it’s not the same as being in a relationship. How could it be? I get told what to do, what to think, how to be. None of that has any meaning in a relationship. ‘I’ don’t matter, you know. It’s what I can do, what I provide that matters.”

The whistle shrieks and Isa turns off the stove. She pours the water into her cup and comes back to the table and sits down. “Being a slave, Autumn, it gave me a place where I belonged. I was safe as long as I was good and obedient. It was a role I thought I knew the rules too.” Stirring her tea for a long moment before she looks at me, “I want to make people happy and take care of them. That way I am taken care of and kept safe. It just didn’t work out that way. Every time I got upset, you came out and kicked the world apart. All I was trying to do was box up the pain and keep it inside. It didn’t matter that I was hurt. They were happy. If they knew I was hurt, they would be hurt and I didn’t want that. If they knew I was hurt, they would use that against me. They could find have found a way to hurt me more.”

I want to hug her and I sit there holding my cup. What had she said ‘they would hurt her,’ hmm, there is something deeper here. It’s a distracting tangent. “Isa, what is a relationship to you?”

She sticks her finger in her tea and grimaces. “Autumn, a relationship is a lot of give and take. I give and they take. But when it’s my turn to take, it goes crazy. I know what I want. I want to be able to be me and still loved for it. I want to be able to devote everything I am but on my own terms. I want it to be acceptable that I have needs and not have to do everything on my own. I want to be able to show my soft belly and know I won’t be hurt for it. I want to be able to say ‘that hurts. can you help fix this with me.’ Is it so wrong to want a partner, an equal, a playmate in life? Isn’t that what a relationship is all about?”

 

A Hidden History

There is another blog that we own that I tend to ignore its existence, Formely Aries’ slave. Isa wrote in it from July 2007 till June 2015. It’s a raw and rough record of two D/s / M/s relationships. It’s an incomplete record of chaos, pain and heartbreak. Isa moved it to private at some point. I know parts of it was here and then removed. I’ve been looking it over, seeking clues to the past. I want to say it’s enlighting but it’s not. It is a bitter pill to swallow actually. This was us at that point in time.

But a lot is recorded, even the day our heart broke so badly that the body physical spiralled out of control with rising high blood pressure. I look back now and suspect something rather sinister was at play. Everything Isa was, was tied so deeply to an identity of a slave that walking away meant death. Fighting an unconscious death wish isn’t fun.

Somewhere in those years, I came out again to fill in for her as she collapsed internally. I’m talking about this because I’ve got a problem I’m still trying to solve. What do I do with Isa? What do I do with her desires and her natural inclination to submit, or rather to revolve around a single person as her all?

If anything that blog is proof Isa can recover and love and trust again. If anything that blog shows how much she’s grown. Dreamwalker’s tale isn’t included in that blog and not much of it is here on this one. But it’s all over her poetry, the whole story is written in every line of her poetry. I’m not sure if that’s a good thing or not. I know she was thinking ‘third times’ a charm’. I’m not sure she ever asked, what kind of charm.

And it occurs to me that I could be asking a different question: what to do with Me? Considering it is me that prevents Isa from being herself as she sees herself. Only one of has a choice, oddly. Isa is what she is, it’s not a matter of choice. But, me, I have a choice. Choice also means having responsibility. What do I do with the part of us that I feel is still unhealthy?

You know, it’s too ingrained, Isa as a submissive/slave. It’s too much a part of her foundational identity. So how do I nurture her towards a proper and healthy expression of her submission, safely without destroying the integrity of the identities in the rest of our system? How do I do that while keeping us safe?

An excerpt from Formely Aries’ slave

First Collar
Posted on September 17, 2010 by Isabella LeCour

While reading a posting about D/s lifestyle and collaring I had a flash back to my first experience of a collar. It happened back in high school. Me and my boyfriend at the time were holed up in my bedroom. We were talking and going through my stuff, for something, needle and thread I think. He reached out and grabbed a black velvet ribbon, deftly wrapped it around my neck and admired it. He told me he liked to see me that way. So simple the words he used, the eloquent expression of desire. I was so moved by his desire that I turned that ribbon into a choker style necklace and wore it proudly the next day. I remember taking it off when we broke up. It had become the symbol of our relationship and I never wore it again once we broke up. But I have never forgotten the experience nor have I been able to shake a preference for chokers. Every choker I wear, I remember him and that velvet ribbon.

It may not be a first collar in a traditional sense in the lifestyle. We were just teenagers with no sense of BDSM, at least I was not and I was the one more sexually experienced. It is instead the first time I submitted to another’s will with a passion. It does strike me as ironic that this memory would be enshrined in myself. I wanted to give everything I was or ever would have to him. Those were my first stirrings of my deep dark submissive passions.

Those feeling were unleashed. I sought them out and like-minded people. I have wore collars for other’s since then. The feeling of belonging is similar yet nowhere near as strong. The shear rightness of it, of my submission has never changed. Kink has been in my soul for a long time.

 

I ‘need’ to feel.

When I was younger there were quite a few things I did that helped me calm down and helped me in those frustrating cycles of persistent arousal. I am once again in the middle of one of those cycles. Yet I don’t engage anymore in self-bondage as I scared myself quite badly. It isn’t safe behaviour and I like breathing for as long as I can. But I have picked back up something that helps during those moments.

In my younger days, I made my own ‘thingie’ out of rope and knots and used to beat it against my back. Sometimes rhythmically, sometimes painfully but a sense of calm always overtook me. Now, I’m using a cheap belt and it’s not going to last long. It’s already fraying and cracking. I don’t get the swing I used it get. The sensation isn’t the same either.

I’d love to lie to myself and say I don’t know why I’m doing it but that’s not true. I know I’m chasing ‘release’ and relief that I know it can give me if I swing it hard enough or long enough. I know I need a better belt. I suspect that it will do in a pinch but I think I might be seeking something else. Not sure what though.

I was one of those who got belted by their parents. Never on the back but buttocks and legs and those left raised welts that took a week to disappear. I was also one of those defiant enough that I learned how to ‘turn it off’ and ended up with no welts much to parental frustrations. I’ve never understood how this behaviour could produce a calm that now I’m seeking once again. I don’t get it.

For now, the ‘reward’ seams worth chasing. It’s causing me to reflect and redefine myself. I don’t see myself as a person who seeks out pain, at least not in a physical sort. Or maybe I’m returning to this because seeking out emotional pain has been too costly? I don’t know. I just want to feel something. Is that so bad?

You reap what you sow.

Next week a whole new insanity starts again. Here in Arizona, school starts up again. It’s a level of busyness that’s welcomed. I’ve had the kids take Karate classes this summer. It kept a nice routine going. Even had the in-laws came and stay for a week. Things are okay. It’s been a good summer.

I’m struggling again but I wonder how much is grief from old wounds, how much of it is just me? My mom’s birthday is on the 9th. I don’t remember a single day of it after she died. It’s a forgotten day. From July 11th to Aug 9th, almost always forgotten. The tail end of June is really rough for me. I still don’t want to look too hard into why. But the body knows, the body remembers.

How do I overcome these challenges?

I’ve been reading over old conversations with Dreamwalker and it’s very rough reading, seeing the villain really was me. I’ve not deleted one jot of his words and yet they stand in black and white testament to well a train wreck of hell. I can only take about 15 minutes of reading before I have to close it and I want to cry but I’m dry. It just hurts.

All is not lost. I can still learn the lessons he was teaching. I can still change and grow. I found my old five and ten-year plan he had me do. I half-assed it like nothing else. I was amazed. I need to redo it. I used to do these things for fun as a kid so what the ever living fuck was I thinking handing in that I will never know. It’s hard for me to think right now. I want to plan for the future. I have some goals but I need to do a break down on them, take a deeper look to see if I should keep them as goals.

These last two weeks have been eye-opening. Dreamwalker went silent and I about lost my mind in grief. My strength is nothing but bravado. I smacked up to just how much I’ve lied to myself. Losing his words was like I lost what was keeps me breathing. How can I say that I don’t trust him when I’ve depended on his words, his thoughts to guide my life still? I had never let go.

I have a lot of wants where he is concerned. But what I need is to stop waiting. As much as I want to hear him whisper “Good girl” in my ear, I need to have earned it first. I am unable to solve if he still wants me. I am unable to solve anything of this relationship. The fight was always inside of me, between holding to what I need versus what I am afraid of and my integrity held my feet into the fire until I found a way to run. And I’ve made him a part of me and it’s hard to run away from yourself.

Autumn was right in a way. We do push people away when they make us happy. We always have and we can trace this back into early childhood. But what we did to Dreamwalker was uncalled for and unprecedented in our history. I know I deserve abandonment. I did earn that. It’s a crippling thought that I’ve lost him forever. Even if it’s true, I refuse to let that be his legacy in my life. Through him, because of him, I’ve taken a harder look at who I am and how I act and who I want to be. I am Proud to have known him even for a little bit!

I need Autumn back and I need to be able to stay. I need to find that rhythm that makes the harmony in my life. I need Autumn’s strength and fortitude and I see she needs my empathy, compassion and ability to love. I need my Captain back in the seat so we can sail these waters again.

I’m very, so very hungry…can you feed me? Pretty please?

Think back to all the plates of spaghetti you’ve eaten in your life. Remember the ones that were really filling and then the plates that were just ho-hum. Sex is just like eating spaghetti. It’s filling and tastes delicious and you want more of it.

Some chefs can only dish out the same for every person. Endless rounds of just pasta and sauce and leave you craving garlic and meatballs. Some chefs get fancy and sprinkle on the parmesan cheese and give a side of garlic bread. A few chefs will ask you how you like your spaghetti and sever up exactly what you asked for. And fewer still, will ask you to take a chance as they blindfold your eyes and feed you.

So, how do you like your spaghetti?

Help! They had a buttonhold on me!

It’s Friday again.

I think my roller-coaster stopped to let a few of my marbles off. Nothing like going up an down, up and down till you beg for mercy. Mercy!

I started planning this post a few days ago. Between wanting to pick up the gratitude journal again, which really needs to complete the switch to Monday instead and wanting to start a new journaling project; I’ve been ruminating.

I haven’t been pleased with a bushel of things in my life. All of them alone are minor quibbles but like dust-bunnies, they multiplied and ganged up on me. I’ve been held hostage for years by these things! Threating me to be that last dirt dish in the sink..a sparkingly sink…gasp..or to be that one Lego on the floor that makes sure I step on it first in the middle of the night on the way to the bathroom…the horror..or even to be that one more thing…that breaks my back…’cause surely I can carry it all on my own. I yanked out my secret weapon! Back you, beastly feigns! I’m waving around my living room with a pen in hand as I start sword fighting with these beasts. And I laugh! I laugh! Deep and full rumbling belly laugh and BAM! glitter rains down all around me.

Teehee. I laugh. If I don’t laugh, I’ll cry over all that spilled milk that missed the glass. I’d rather laugh than walk hand in hand with sorrow.

That new journaling project I’m wanting to work on? It’s about self-compassion.

Stay tuned good folks out there and give it a go – laugh!

I finely feel safe.

It’s weird. I feel safe. After all this time, I’ve got tears of joy running down my face and I feel happy like a weight was lifted off my shoulders. I finally feel safe.

I hate doing relationship autopsies but this case it’s needed. I said goodbye and this time I feel free. I am free. And it’s because I feel safe. I couldn’t express this before. I didn’t know this feeling. I’ve been puzzling over it and I’m sure this is what safe feels like. Yeah, I feel safe.

It’s only recently I learned that each time I run, he deletes everything. So my address, my phone number, my emails, all gone, deleted. He has only one way to reach online and that’s it. He can’t find me. He can’t show up at my home. I’m beyond his reach now. I feel free and safe.

Weird right? I don’t know if it was a mind fuck gone wrong or what. Maybe it’s something left over from PTSD, I just don’t know. I’m working on figuring it out. I had to get strong enough to break a promise. I rarely make promises and all he’s ever seen of me is a string of broken promises. But I broke this one and I’m good with that. I made peace with myself over it. It stings and it will forever. It’s not something to forget. But I made my peace.

Early days, he wanted me to move in with him. There was a lot of talk, even of coming up to grab me and no one knowing what happened to me. I know that set in the terror. It scarred me. I ran then too. But I went back. I just didn’t know how deeply it scared me. All my life I’ve dealt with those kinds of emotions. For me they are normal. Or well they were normal.

I kept going back. Fighting my fears, fighting my reluctance and fighting him too. I tried to express that something was wrong but I never had a good grip on what it was. So I couldn’t say it like I’m doing now.

Even with the pee penny, my body had to teach me what I was feeling. I was supposed to put a penny in the toilet every time I peed, then fish it out. Okay, I can do that. I don’t get the squrrmies over it. I’m a mom, I cloth diapered my kids and hand-washed them. They had sensitive bottoms! So pee and poo don’t both me. My toilet stayed super clean. I switched to my non-dominant hand once I started wearing contacts again. But then my body learned to always poo when I pee. No longer was I fishing out a penny. And that had us going WTF? Why did that change?

Why was I resistant? If he let up, I’d backslide every time. You could count on it. Without him cracking the whip, things got much worse before they got better. It became the pattern. I hated it. This time, I knew my stuff was deleted. This time he left me not knowing if he’d ever be back. On one hand, it hurt like hell and on the other it was like okay fuck it, what are we going to do now? And I found I refused to do anything for him. So my life is going to shit. Fuck that shit, fuck that all to hell. My life, I’m doing it for me.

That’s what I needed. I started to chase my happy. Which also coincided with massive masturbation sessions. Nothing like a good daily pick-me-up to put a smile on your face.

I still had to face him, tell him. Didn’t want him wasting money on something I just won’t do. I gave up long ago trying to explain my problem. I gave up trying to figure it out. It was either him or me that was the problem. And it turns out, it was me after all. I didn’t have a lot of words for him. If I said more, he’d find a way to back me down and I’d collapse in again. If I’d said more, he’d poke holes all in it and I’d feel stupid for even attempting to be heard. If I said more, it would turn into an argument that does no one any good. If I said more, I’d bend and back off, back down, say I’m sorry and I’d still be there.

It’s odd. I think he might have guessed what the problem was. He mentioned a whole thing about ‘if I ever felt trapped, it was done’ as in over. Oddly that terrified me ever more as I often felt trapped. So I set to work on redefining that emotion. Still felt it.

But I walked. He was kind to me. Far kinder than I expected. I admit I cried. That kindness I had not felt from him and only feel when it’s over? It hurt and pissed me off even as I appreciated it. I had not known how much I really needed kindness shown to me. And in the after, this feeling, this amazing feeling is what it is to feel safe. I had never known what that feeling was before. Now I know what it is.

And I have him to thank for that. Thank you.