Like many submissives, I find the subspace experience to be pleasant, satisfying, and just a little mysterious. The times when I've managed to launch off into that different sort of awareness have been some of the best parts of being who I am and what I am inside of my intimate life.
Recently, though, I've found myself, in the midst of sadomasochistic play, traveling to a different sort of mental place. At least, I suppose it is a "mental" place. It might be.
I used to battle my way along through most sessions, believing that I was, mostly, working to please Him. Sometimes, rarely, I got off into my own good place, and even more rarely, I'd get turned on and find the whole event thrilling and sexy. At some level, I believed that when that happened, He had allowed it in some way; letting me go and permitting me to find that path way. I felt that it was a sort of indulgence; a release from the suffering that He most enjoyed from me, and so a gift of sorts.
As everything has shifted in our lives, I have lived for better than two years with the awareness that sadomasochistic play between us is not what it had been. I sense that there is a banking of the fire that once drove His sadistic urges. Even as I continued to feel the inner urge to submit and fold into the belonging that was once the norm for me, I confronted the fact that the place where that was possible for me no longer exists between us. I have, very slowly, evolved into a mindset that allows me to play and take away from it what I need. Understanding that I may not always be able to do anything to please Him has given me the space in which to please myself. And I am still a masochist at my core, and so the occasion of masochistic play has become an opportunity for me to go where I will inside my own person.
I used to get through spankings by chanting away inside my head. Most often, those repeated, mantra-like chants were of a couple of forms:
- Yours always and all ways, Yours always and all ways, Yours always and all ways...
- I love You, Sir, I love You, Sir, I love You, Sir...
Sometimes, in my darker times, the repetition would sound more like: You are just the butt, You are just the butt, You are just the butt...
Either way, I avoided anything that seemed like counting. I used that repetitive, mental chattering to help me regulate my breathing, and anchor me to the present. It worked to keep me from imagining that the pain would go on forever, escalating ever upward, until I would simply cease to exist in any viable sense. It prevented panic and rage. It allowed me to be what I believed I should be; what I wanted to be.
Lately, though, I've found that I do count; not strokes but more of a breath count like I once used when I was learning to swim. I've found that I tend to fall into an eight-count; two counts as I breathe in, and then two as I breathe out. Repeated over and over: one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight...
The trick seems to be that I need to remember to be asking the question when I get to wherever it is that I go in these moments. The big question that I've been asking for a long time now is, "What can I do to lessen the emotional distance and separation between He and I?" We live, these days, with a gentler, softer, but limp seeming emotional space. The fire and passion is simply gone; a memory of another place and time. I am torn. I do not miss the dangerous, scary, and mean parts of the "unhealthy" co-dependence that characterized our former life, but I often feel as though we live more as roommates than lovers. To be sure, there is nothing much left of our power dynamic (although I continue to act out that relational style by habit and internal conditioning).
So, I have been making the "shamanic journey" wondering, asking, what to do to bring the two of us closer, and then, just a week or so ago, I came back up out of that purple-lighted deep space with the, seemingly, obvious answer: If you want to be more connected; if you want to close the gap between you; if you want to reduce the separation; then you must stop separating from Him.
OH! Duh! Here, I've gone along believing that it was Him who was creating the distance, and insisting on the arms-length space between us. Imagine my surprise when the answer made it clear that it is me. ME. I am the one who has been pulling away, like the frightened child I once was, I have reacted to His struggles and His pain and His anger by hiding my self. I have banked my own emotional fires, and convinced myself that the appropriate thing to do was to simply stop pushing, stop needing, stop caring, and stop wanting the close, intimate connection with Him. I have reverted to that strong, rigid, Amazon woman that I was when I first entered into this life. I have gone back to the claim that I can take care of myself, that I don't need anyone. It is a lonely and ugly place, and I have put myself there. He has not done it to me; to us. It is me. I am the one who needs to take down the walls, curl up in His arms, and let it be OK to be there. I need to stop making the separation happen between us.