Sunday, February 22, 2009Under Contract Again
Our contract expires on new year's eve each year and is open for renegotiation at that point. Since October, we've had a lot of drama; medical stuff and extended family stuff, so in other words, life. Given all that was going on, I am grieving and have situational depression, and that does not a good sub make. My lovely mistress decided not to let me sign the contract until I was feeling and acting better.
We discussed at dinner a few days ago how these past months, we don't get each other; we're not on the same page. We both feel like we have no idea what the other person wants when they speak. She said "are you ready for our date tonight?" and I said yes, and then she said "Are you really ready?" to which I said yes, and started freaking out that she was going to do something or expect something and it was going to be weird or too intense or if I slip up or anything goes wrong, she'll be upset and never want to date with me again or some other super-dramatic extreme thought. Turns out she was just joking around and was just excited. I never picked up on it until she said that, and that caused so much craziness in me because I had no idea what she was saying.
More to the point, she feels like I am overburdened. I have assumed a lot of the responsibilities for the household chores for various reasons, in addition to working full time and taking care of the kids when I'm home, and it keeps me very busy. She now feels like if she asks me to do even one more thing on top of this, I'm going to throw my hands up in the air and walk out and declare her too needy and impossible to live with. I try to reassure her that I am not overburdened and I do get joy from service, and that nothing is permanent (another lesson from Buddha). That said, she can't really be dominant to me if she is afraid of telling me to do something. She says she hears the words I say, but she doesn't see the joy in my service, only the anger and frustration and worry I wear on my sleeve.
I have been hard to live with - we've been living in crisis mode for a while now. Things kept happening outside of our household that drew our attentions away, pretty much daily. My Lady felt like she couldn't make plans for the week since she had no idea what was going to happen. I hesitated to commit to anything for the same reason. It's been all pins and needles around here and not in a fun, kinky way. Couple that constant anxiety with my situational depression and I go bonkers. I am still happy to serve, but I am easily frustrated and angered and then I can't shake the bad mood.
The other day I got a small bill for a copay to a doctor's office after I called the doctor's office twice and the insurance company and they all said "no copay." When I called the insurance company again they said "I don't know who you talked to but of course there's a copay." I lost it. It isn't even a big deal, it's a tiny copay but I felt like the world was just closing in on me, like people lie to me and it's not just, and that's a big trigger for me. The end result is me stomping around, grumpy and mad at this little copay and some misunderstandings that I would usually laugh off and say "Heh, I figured there was a copay. Seemed too good to be true."
I was sour for a while after that, and when my lovely Lady rolled in to eat the lunch I had prepared for her, she naturally assumed that I was a raging lunatic because I made her lunch and she was a few minutes later than I expected and her food was a little cold and I was totally pissed off at her for slipping her schedule a little or something. At the point that I'm frustrated with something, it's hard to tell what it is directed at, and no matter how much I tell her it isn't her, it was this other thing that set me off, it doesn't matter. She has to deal with me in my bad mood and wonder/worry if it is about her, and that makes her withdraw, and then I get more upset because she is upset, and around we go for the rest of the day.
So as of late, I've been working on not being defensive, and letting things go as fast as possible to shake the bad mood. My ultimate goal is to not get triggered at all, to let it go before it hits and then I don't have to let the bad mood go because it will never have started. Bad moods are mutually exclusive from good service in our house.
Sunday, February 15, 2009Defining my Dominance part III
4. Right Action
Right action refers to the way one uses his/her body and (duh) actions.
As it relates to being my submissive, one should behave with respect for self and others at all times. When I discussed "right view," I listed the guiding principles of my household and suggested that those be kept in mind when making any decision. Right action means following through with those guiding principles, making each action taken a reflection of one of them.
From the time pet arises in the morning to when he gets in bed at night (after kneeling beside the bed to say goodnight to me), his actions should reflect his submission to me. If he does the dishes, he does them in the way I've requested--everything from putting things away in the correct place to using the correct dish soap is important.
Right action, in effect, means doing things my way, not his.
This took me quite a while to embrace. I felt kind of stupid, in truth, being so micro-managy. I don't really care how things get done, except, in the end, I do care. I like things done my way--who doesn't? I realized a while back that by not defining these expectations, I was setting us both up for frustrations. When I go to get a piece of tupperware from a cabinet and they all fall on my head due to poor action, I feel irritated. When I feel irritated, even if I don't blame pet, pet suffers because I generally disappear behind a computer or something when I'm frustrated so as not to inflict random petty irritations on my family. He HATES that, would much rather do things like put dishes away correctly. If I define in advance the way things are done that keep me happy, pet stays happier too. I'm still not overjoyed to be so specific and detailed in my dominance, I had hoped to stay more vauge and general. But the more pet knows what I expect, the happier he is and the happier I am. Must be a quirk of either my particular submissive, or submissives in general. The more I am able to define the specifics of a task, the better he can serve me. In addition, when he does do things "my way," I feel truly served by a submissive, rather than feeling like my husband did the dishes. It is a small distinction, but an important one.
If someone puts dishes away at all, I'm happy. If someone puts dishes away the way I want them put away, I'm being served and that is a different happiness. I hope that is clear.
5. Right Livelihood
In Buddhist thought, this refers to how you chose to make a living, some jobs being off limits due to cruelty or other rules.
Here, this applies to my household only minimally but there are some important aspects. Submissives should maintain their positions at their jobs, or seek to improve/change them if they desire. Work should provide stimulation, financial support and joy to a person, but should not be the focus of his life. I don't expect anyone to serve me in a way that puts their job in jeopardy unless the job prevents him from putting family first. Some jobs do, pet's does not.
I really believe that it is worth going to school to procure employment that fufills a submissive (or anyone, really). Working a job that doesn't satisfy your needs is not good service, as everyone suffers when someone hates their job. Good service means self-care, and good self-care includes going to a place every day that is fun and interesting and makes enough money to live.