Other Foot

I just got back from a week long adventure in the wilds of Montana. I was sent there for my day job. Normally, if I’m sent to an offsite location it’s within my home state and I’m sleeping in my own bed that night. Now my husband is sent all over the country a couple times a year. This is the first time the shoe was on the other foot.

My trip was with 35 strangers. We were a mix of males and females ranging in age from college students to grandparents. Half of us, me included, were completely out of our comfort zone. I’m good in the woods or the desert, but I’m not good surrounded with strangers. It’s exhausting to be with strangers that I have to interact with for 14 or 15 hours a day without a break. I had no down time. No time to recharge my batteries.

In addition to my husband being my source of unconditional love and security, he’s also a buffer between me and people. I’m not a gregarious sort. I live in my head. I create mini worlds and I control how they interact. I control the plot, the dialogue and the ending. The real world is all together different. And generally – I’m not a fan.

To me, ‘the public’ is an energy vampire. Being in close confines with others just sucks the life out of me. I was prepared for inclement weather, the back country, long hours and rough conditions. I was not prepared for the toll of being around strangers for a week solid with sleep being my only away time. I came home utterly fried emotionally and physically.

My Love, on the other hand, experienced what it’s like to go about your normal routine with the other half of your soul missing. He’d come home and heat up a meal I’d prepared ahead of time, but he’d eat it alone. He had no one to share his day with. No one to share the chores. Yet, everywhere he looked he was reminded of me and something we created together. He said, if something ever happened to me the house would be on the market in a heartbeat. The memories would eat him alive.

At the end of the week, we both decided we’re no good alone. We’re halves of one whole. I think that’s the way it’s meant to be. We’ve spent everyday of 38 years together except for the occasional solo work trip. Our lives are completely intertwined and that’s the way we like it.

Montana

Whirlwind

Man, the last 30 days have been a whirlwind of chaos and stress. Yet, I feel blessed to say it has made my Love and I even closer.

The first disaster to strike was our air conditioner died. And I mean completed died. There was no reviving it. We went a week without it. Since we have large pets moving into a hotel was out of the question. Although our kids offered to let us stay with them, we decided to tough it out and not impose.

We live in the desert in Arizona and it was August. It’s our monsoon season. If you’ve never experienced Arizona in the summertime, I’m not sure you can appreciate exactly what it feels like here. When they tout it being a dry heat – they are talking about June and early July. In August, we have high temps and humidity. If you go from air conditioned cars to air conditioned buildings, it’s doable. I wouldn’t recommend living by fans alone in 110 degree heat though.

In truth, we were together and we came through it with a new appreciation for each other although our cuddle time took it in the shorts. ūüôā

Fast forward to Labor Day – the perfect day for our well to die right? No one open. No one willing to drive out to the middle of no-where to even look at. My Love worked his magic and got it working (somewhat) so we were able to limp by until morning. Now if you read my blog, you’ll know why way of coping is to clean (among other things). Kinky sex with my Love, clean the house from top to bottom, rock out and dance to loud music, read something deliciously dirty and write – to be exact. But, I got off track. My point was it’s very difficult to clean when you can’t turn on the faucet.

During the week, we spoke to many well drillers and heard a different version of what they thought caused the problem and how to make the repair. Toss in stress of our daughter preparing for a 2+ week trip to Europe, a job interview for me and an eight week old pup and the stress level hit critical mass.

Which takes takes us back to coping strategies. Kinky sex is often dirty – no water for aftercare. Cleaning generally requires water too. Sure you can vacuum, but no dish washing, no laundry, no mopping, etc. Music and reading tried their best, but it was a rough job.

Today, I’m happy to say, our well solution was implemented. Everything looks good so far. It only cost the gross national product of a third world country to get water flowing through the faucets once more. My Love, with some help from our son, effected the repair.

He was truly amazing. He did tons of research and learned all about our current system and what else was available. As always, he took charge and made the decisions – with some input from me. I’m very proud of him. He was up at sunrise and worked his butt off most of the day. The sun was brutal and there’s no shade. Temperatures reached over a hundred degrees, yet he worked tirelessly until the repairs were completed and water once again flowed up to the house.

After the sun went down, we took a dip in the spa to help relax his aching muscles. Sitting there together, watching the sun go down, he leaned over and kissed me. Then said, “thank you. I couldn’t have done any of this without you.” I wasn’t working the shovel, or manhandling the tanks, or repairing the plumbing, or risking my life with the 220 electric that runs the pump, but here he was thanking me for supporting him. Silly man, I live for him – how could I not support him? He’s the best!beautiful

 

 

Let’s Be Independent Together

Yeah, I know it’s 114 degrees outside and there’s no good reason why I’m remembering a line from a Christmas movie – but there it is. I’m weird like that.

My Love and I have been together over 37 years. I think it works because we still enjoy and crave our together time. We are independent people. My guy collects toy trains, he enjoys working on cars and cruising around the lake in whatever boat he’s just finished restoring. I have little interest in trains, but I go to the swap meets and help him rummage through the boxes. The only aspect I enjoy about cars is driving them – and extra-curriculars in the backseat, but I go to junk yards with him and help him find whatever widget he’s searching for this time. And I listen as he describes the variations and the small nuances that intrigue him. I know w-a-y more about cars and Lionel trains than I ever thought I would.

I’m sure you see where this is going. I don’t have to enjoy the same aspects of his hobbies as he does. I find enjoyment in watching his face light up when he finds something that makes him happy. I want to be the person he thinks of first when reaches out to share an experience.

By the same token, he has no interest in stained glass. He enjoys the final product, but he’s not one to stand at the work bench for hours on end cutting out tiny pieces of glass, surrounding them with lead and soldering them together. Oh, he has the talent and the patience – just not the interest. Yet, he goes with me to the glass shop and helps me pick out the glass. He feeds me snacks when I’m working with lead and really shouldn’t be messing with food. He goes clothing shopping with me and never complains about how long I take or all the multitude of packages he holds for me. He reads my books-each and every version until it’s just the way I want it. We bounces story lines back and forth and he helps me with scenes that frustrate the daylights out of me. He also my biggest cheerleader. When I’m ready to throw in the towel, he’s there to bolster my spirits.

I revel in knowing that I can be my own person. I can have interests separate from him, yet he’s willing to share them with me – in one capacity or another. We are independent together.

Rough Week

It’s been a rough week. We had to say goodbye to our Great Dane, Mickie. Man, it hurts. He’s been my constant companion for the last nine and a half years. He’ll be sorely missed.

My brother also went into the hospital to have his one remaining kidney removed. As I write this, I’m waiting to hear the outcome. We all suspect cancer. The real question is has it spread.

To make matters even harder to handle -my Love and I have been off-kilter for a few months now. As soon as he got back from a long ass trip to New York, our pup started going down him. Most of our time and energy was spent keeping him happy and as healthy as possible. Toss in a job change for me, a visit from the in-laws, and my brother’s failing health and you get stress. Lots of stress.

We’re working on getting our D/s back on track. It’s way too easy for it to take a backseat when life decides to rear its ugly head. It’s a nasty catch 22. Our D/s is like anything else – it needs maintenance. Sometimes it flows smoothly and is¬† deeply interwoven into our relationship. Sometimes it’s an uphill battle. When you’re falling into bed and happy if you catch four or five hours of sleep, it’s hard enough to make time for a quick romp, let alone a whole scene.

The more time that passes between scenes, the harder it is to push away the stress. Finding the right mindset seems next to impossible when you’re listening to make sure the pup is breathing okay, or in fear of the phone ringing with news you really don’t want to hear.

But it’s worth it. The connection we feel during and after a scene is hard to describe. The intimacy that comes from being vulnerable can’t be found any other way – or at least not for us.

As long as we stay tight, we’ll weather any storm that comes our way.

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Happy Dancing all over the house!

It’s time. There were days when I wondered if it would ever happen again.¬†The One and Only is available for sale. After an incredibly long dispute with the original publisher, I own the rights again. I also put the book back to the way I had wanted it in the first place.

I’m done with editors who don’t understand a single thing about the lifestyle telling me how to ‘correct’ my story. I could write a 10k page book on some of the absurd changes I’ve been told to make over the years. My family and friends duck for cover when it’s editing time. I’ll stare my computer and scream random phrases – What do you mean that’s impossible? Have you ever had sex before? Independent body part? Eff you! It’s written in her POV for heaven’s sake. On and on it goes until ‘my editor’ is as frustrated with me as I am with them and then they turn me over to a group that is supposed to look for only the grammatical errors. Of course, you’ll get one or two of them that have to comment on the content and the fun starts all over again. By the time it’s done my head is ready to explode.

This one is all mine. For better or for worse.  amazon.com/author/toricarson

TheOneAndOnly_BookCover_V2

The cover was done by my soon to be son-in-law. I absolutely LOVE his work. If you’re publishing a book, please consider working with him. Unlike my previous art designers, he actually listens to my ideas. I wanted something elegant, romantic and a touch dark. I wanted the Dom to be the focal point. We discussed the story line and plot of each book. After that, I turned him loose and hoped for the best.

He came up with the series design and matched each cover to the individual stories. Small details, I hadn’t noticed at first, such as the type of plants that run along the top are specific to plot elements. I am very impressed with his work. The covers are amazing and I couldn’t be happier. He’s awesome. If you’re self publishing – give him a shot. You’ll love him.

Check out his website at katz-concepts.com or shoot him an email at ryan@katz-concepts.com

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On and on we go…

It’s nothing new. Every time My Love has to go away for an extended period of time our D/s slows down. It’s never pure vanilla. I don’t think either one of us could go back to that, but the intensity backs way off.

I’m not sure if he has difficulty finding his Dom space when he knows he’s about to fly across the continent or if he worries about me suffering from sub-drop while he’s away.

Once he returns, he’s ready to dive right back in, but I struggle a bit. He’s in tune with me and understands. He still pushes, as is his right, yet it isn’t at the depth he’d probably prefer. One scene at a time, we build the power between us.

Two days after he’d walked back into my arms, we were nearly back on track. My emotions were settled and our scenes were heating up faster than an Arizona summer.

That night our pup, a nine year old Great Dane, took a bad turn. My Love drove him to the vet and we received the long face. He brought our baby boy back home and our attention is now centered on him. We need to make him comfortable and do what we can to hold off the inevitable.

Neither of us feels our normal drive. Our pets are more than pets. They’re part of our chosen family, that small group of beings we prefer to spend our time with – rather than those that share a strand or two of similar DNA.

It’s funny how the amazing sex portion of our D/s helps us deal with day to day stress, but when our heart is being ripped out it isn’t as helpful. I’m not saying we revert back to a vanilla couple. I’m not sure anything could do that. Instead it’s the emotional side of our D/s that brings us the most comfort.

I find a semblance of peace in serving My Love. Whether I serve him through seriously kinky sex or by keeping fresh, sun-tea chilled in the refrigerator, our familiar roles help us cope.

My Love is shouldering the responsibility even though it isn’t his fault. It’s no one’s fault, but someone he loves is in a bad way and he can’t fix it. He can’t change the inevitable. Yet, he isn’t giving up. He’s determined to give our pup as much time as possible. He’s been spending his vacation time coaxing our baby boy to eat, drink and take his meds. He gets up multiple times a night and takes him outside without a single word of complaint.

And in the process, My Love is stealing my broken heart. Watching his gentle care of our pup reminds me of why I offer him my love and my submission each and every day.

Together. As always. We will make it through this.

34 years and we still blunder…

Last Friday, I also received fantastic news about my brother. The experimental treatment he’s on has really made great strides and his test results are looking amazing. Ironically, I received his text while I was sitting in an emergency room in more pain than I can remember going through in a long time.

Thursday, I had a nagging headache. It wouldn’t leave me alone. I wanted nothing more than to go home and sleep it off, but both our kids reached out with issues they wanted to discuss. Fast forward, it’s midnight, my head is screaming and my stomach is decidedly unhappy. I’ve done all I can do parent wise and I try to sleep. My head had other plans. I woke in severe pain several times. I told my Love, I was staying home from work. I didn’t think I could drive there anyway. Since he was taking off the following week, he felt he needed to go in and that playing hookie wasn’t an option. I get it. He’s a stand-up guy. Loyal. Doing what’s right matters to him.

As the day progresses, I get sicker and sicker. I began to think I had stomach flu in addition to the migraine. I kept thinking if it doesn’t let up I’m going to have to go to the doctor. I knew I couldn’t drive and I knew my Love was miles and miles away. I thought about calling another member of my family for a ride. Clearly, I wasn’t thinking properly.

I know I come first. Nothing is more important to my husband than I am.¬† He tells me this all the time. He makes me repeat it on occasion. I knew if I told him ‘come home’, he would have. I was trying to put his need to finish out the work day ahead of my need for him. Big mistake. Huge.

Our daughter was texting and texting and looking at the screen was killing me, so I explained that I was ill and considering asking for a ride to the doctor. She immediately reached out to my Love. He raced home, got me into the car and off we went.

His anger was palpable. Even through the pain, I knew he was seriously pissed that I hadn’t explained just how sick I was. In my mind, I had, but I had also shared my hope anytime it felt even marginally better. I hadn’t realized just how mixed the signals I was sending really were.

Fast forward – I’m being loaded into the ambulance. I knew he was standing outside the door watching. By that time, fear was coming off him in waves. I’m afraid the image of me inside the back of it would haunt him for a long time. He’s mentioned it a few times already.

The first person I saw when they opened the door was my Love’s face. He stayed with me the entire time, even going down with me for the tests. A couple family members showed up, but he still didn’t leave me side. He is my rock.

Once they finally figured out the chemical concoction to get me feeling as close to ‘normal’ as I ever am, they let me go home. I don’t think I was in the car ten minutes before the lecture set in. We now have a ‘signal word’ much like a safe word that will let him know that he needs to come home immediately. I’m sure we aren’t finished with the conversation. I’m still feeling a bit under the weather and I know he’s treating me with kid gloves. Once they come off, I suspect I’ll get an ass beating I won’t soon forget. Don’t tell him, but I’m mostly looking forward to it. I need the punishment to let go of the guilt of scaring him. The guilt of not telling him I needed him. The guilt over considering calling someone else to take me to the doctor when I know I should have turned to him.

Wednesday will be our 34th wedding anniversary. I guess it doesn’t matter how long you’re together, sometimes there will be blunders.

Getting Back in Sync

Toward the end of last summer, our son moved in with us while his house was being built. Though it was nice having him around, it definitely cut into our kink. For years now, we haven’t had to worry about how loud we were or whether a scene was enclosed in the privacy of our bedroom.

Mid December his home was ready and we returned to kinky DINKs. We bought our first piece of ‘fuck furniture’. Now we’ve transformed a lot of normal things into BDSM toys before, but this was the first piece of substantial furniture we’ve bought for the purpose of playing. He’s discretely hidden eye-bolts to the frame as tie off points for bondage. Of course the legs will be incorporated also.

My Love has spent considerable time designing scenes and we’re getting back into the groove. Thankfully, we’re falling into sync rather easily. My stress level is down and I’m able to write again. 2018 is off to a good start. Let’s up the momentum continues.

Interesting Weekend

Life can be a fickle bitch, but she has a sense of humor. Just when you’re used to her shitting all over you, she throws you a rose. Or in my case the sweetest branch of thorns I’ve ever had.

A situation arose that placed a heavier emphasis on our D/s than usual. The ‘situation’ was the typical shit life likes to dish out, but my Love turned it around for us. Instead of just accepting what was headed our way, it became a crazy, wonderful weekend that set a new tone for our relationship.

As we worked through the ‘situation’ we tried several new things this weekend. Some we will incorporate and others will be tossed aside, but all garnered valuable information. The debriefing after each scene is so so important. It helps us alleviate misconceptions that have happened in the past. It also allows us to figure out why something pushes our buttons.

One activity we tried, started out great. I grew wet as need thrummed through me. My Love figured we had a winner on our hands, but about fifteen minutes into the scene there was a side effect that left me cold. As my attention was drawn away from the erotic aspect, pain became simply pain and what had been enticing just moments before was suddenly annoying as hell . He noticed immediately, but rather than completely stop the scene he rolled with it. He changed a few things and got us back on track.

Afterward when we were discussing what went wrong, his initial impression was off. He thought I was upset by the essence of the scene. If we hadn’t talked – openly and honestly – he might have taken that type of play off the table completely. I’m so glad we are able to communicate, even about the tough stuff. During our conversation, we learned a little more about what takes me deeper into the submissive zone. It’s crazy that after thirty plus years together, we’re still discovering new stuff.

Yeah, life is good.

Friends…

I’ve been pondering a few things this week. Dangerous, I know.

At what point does a person move from an acquaintance to a friend? I’m on several BDSM boards and there are often posts about ‘coming out’ with friends and family. My question is – if you are in the lifestyle, if it’s a way of life for you, not some kinky fun you enjoy in the bedroom – and your friends don’t know – are they really your friends?

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think ‘friends’ need to know what goes on behind closed doors, but if they know nothing about a major component of your personality/life, I wonder if they count as friends. For me, the answer is no they’re not. They are someone I chat with on a superficial level.

A friend is someone I can trust. Someone who has my back and I have theirs. Someone that shares my same values. We don’t have to agree on politics or brand loyalties, but underneath all the fluff, we need to be in sync. I don’t share that with many people.

The biggie for me is respect. If you run down your significant other, we’ll never be friends. This is the person you’re supposed to love above all others. As soon as I hear a phrase such as – ‘you won’t believe what my stupid ________ (bf, gf, wife, husband), did now’, I’m out. People think they’re being funny. They’ll tell you, if you call them on it, they don’t mean it like that… Geez, what’s your problem?

My problem is, it’s hurtful. You’re diminishing how other’s look at your loved one in order to gain something – attention, sympathy, laughs…

Of course there with be times when something happens and you’re confused or hurt by your SO’s actions. But shouldn’t the conversation at least start between the two of you? Your lunch buddies won’t be able to tell you why your (bf, gf, wife, husband) overdrew your checking account or has a questionable picture on their phone. So sharing your laundry with them only serves a negative purpose.

This one person I’ve known for more than half my life thought it was perfectly fine to eat lunch daily with coworker they were attracted to. They had no intentions of taking it beyond a coworker/friend relationship so what could possibly go wrong? I’m sure you can see where this is going. A hell of a lot went wrong. Bashing their respective spouses ¬†turned into a frequent occurrence. Instead of talking to their loved one about an issue, they’d let it fester. They’d chat with their coworker and garner sympathy. ¬†The coworker, who only heard one side of the issues, naturally sided with their ‘friend’ and would converse accordingly. “Why do you put up with that? They shouldn’t treat you that way!”

Then my long time buddy made the fatal mistake. In an argument, they told their spouse what the coworker had said about them. The spouse knew immediately that the coworker had been privy to all their dirty laundry. The spouse felt betrayed (in my opinion – rightfully so). The marriage dissolved.

You may be wondering how we went from telling the difference between a friend and an acquaintance to divorce, but in my warped mind they connect. The road linking them is called trust. The difference between a friend and an acquaintance is the level of trust you have for that person.

The person you give your heart to, should be the person you trust more than anyone else. Period, end of sentence. If something isn’t right between you two, trust them to care enough to listen and to make changes. Trust them to have your back and give them that in return.

See it was a twisty, dirt road, but it did eventually get to the point.

dirt road