Do you ever feel as if you are in the middle of a desert?
All you can see for miles and miles are the never-ending, undulating sand dunes, a clear blue sky, and that relentless sun beating down from overhead.
Not a tree, not a rocky outcrop, not an oasis to provide a little shade, a little respite, a little comfort.
Last Tuesday came as a bit of a shock to my system. It was, I believe, a breakthrough for both of us, although perhaps in different ways.
I've thought of little else since then, even when cooking, cleaning, doing the laundry, even when digging potatoes out in the veggie patch and picking cucumbers to make my special salad with sour cream.
I knew I had to talk to Dan. Had to discuss how I had felt at the time. How I felt afterwards. But we've been so busy we haven't had a moment. The minute we go to bed we sleep a sleep born out of complete physical and mental exhaustion.
I have been so calm in my head, since my spanking, even though I have been pretty physically stressed. Sort of a floating feeling, almost.
Then last night, all the calm and tranquillity suddenly left me. I was sitting on the sofa across from Dan, who was watching an old episode of NCIS (the one with the blow-up doll!) and I was sort of reading, and sort of watching, when I felt all my "good feeling" drain out of my system.
I can only compare it with the need for a large intake of caffeine, as I can only imagine what it must be like to be dependent on something like cocaine. But it wasn't a gradual lessening, it went all at once, and my light, airy, happy demeanour went with it.
(Many of you voiced the opinion that I needed to talk with Dan, and some of you sent me some really lovely emails. Thank you all so much. Honestly, I don't know what I would do, or how I would cope without your support!)
So this morning as we sat propped up by our pillows, sipping our tea/coffee and watching the clouds scudding by through the high windows, I knew I would have to tackle the subject of how this latest spanking had affected me so emotionally. I just didn't know how.
Dan was in full flow about selling the barn and what we had left to do, and how we were going to accomplish it as quickly as possible, and how we were going to have to stay on top of things and not let clutter and junk invade every room.
I finished my coffee and slumped down again relaxing - it was only just after 7 after all! He soon followed and as I was turned on my side away from him, he spooned up to me and put his arm around my waist, which I love. He never used to do this, and it makes me feel so relaxed and wanted.
He was just beginning to get a little amorous, and I thought, Well, I've got to tackle this issue, or it'll eat me up.
So I started to chat about how attentive he had been to me since Tuesday, and how content and cherished he had made me feel. I explained that I had felt that for the first time ever, he had taken total control of a spanking, and I had felt a vulnerability I had never felt before. But that also, it had led to confusion in my head because I had thought it was going to be an erotic spanking, and then a stress relief spanking, and then he had turned it into something far more intense and serious.
I suggested we might separate some of our spankings so we both knew what the spanking was intended to achieve.
It was at this point that Dan reacted in a way I wasn't expecting and was, I thought, a bit scathing and dismissive. I pulled away from him, still on my side and facing away. He was still talking and I was being monosyllabic. Then suddenly the words "your fetish" registered on my brain. He really made me upset, and I burst into tears.
It took him a minute or two for him to realise I was crying, until I was sobbing so loudly I got his attention and got him agitated.
"Well, that's what it is for want of a better word, isn't it? Oh, come on for goodness sake and pull yourself together. I quite like it. I'm happy with it. But let's face it, it's not the average sort of thing you can talk to your friends about is it?"
I cried harder and louder. Dan was at a loss. We were at an impasse.
He let me cry myself out, not trying to hold me or comfort me, just letting me sniffle to a stop and sit up and blow my nose.
He admitted the word "fetish" wasn't a good one to have used, and I told him that I didn't in any way feel any different to anyone else in that our sex lives were not open for discussion with our vanilla friends, and never had been. He, however, begged to differ. He asked me how many times other wives had discussed having less and less sex as they got older, and that he certainly knew from the mens' point of view that if they had sex once a month they were lucky.
I was horrified. Once a month! I felt neglected if we went less than three times a week. (Well, we're not twenty any more and sex every day is reserved for the young - and/or less stressful times!) (If you are young, then you will learn!) But it's something that I would never wish to discuss with the aforesaid friends simply because we have TTWD now, and I am afraid the majority of our friends would definitely not understand; not even understand our regular need for each other. Sadly, that's the way these people have become. For them, youth is too far away.
We discussed TTWD and how it has affected our lives. I tried to explain why I was upset by the word "fetish". A little kink perhaps, but I am a normal person. I'm certainly not into anything heavy. And frankly, if people enjoy going further, that is up to them. It bothers me not a jot. It's a free world!
But I needed Dan to know, that for me, to go back to where we once were, was, and is, not an option. So I asked him about Tuesday's spanking.
I explained how it had affected me and I wanted to know his point of view. He told me that he thought he had probably spanked me harder than he had ever spanked me before. He admitted, reluctantly, that he had enjoyed spanking me. He had come to the conclusion that it was the only way to correct my attitude. He admitted to having a few concerns, but had decided to go with his gut feelings, and he knew the second I submitted to him. And stopped. He said he was surprised there were no bruises, and I ventured the thought that it was because of all the hand spanking first and the gradual build up, instead of whamming me from the offset.
We sat quietly, still talking. I told him that I continued to feel very real guilt for the way I had acted in the past. Talk about an ice queen. I even told him off at one time for wanting to sleep in the nude. I always wore a nightie and knickers. I hated my breasts touched. I never ever let him kiss me or touch me more than he had to down there. When all this started, I am at a loss to remember, but it was after having our children, so maybe something shifted in my brain. Who knows.
Dan said to me, "Look, we've been married all these years and weathered many storms. It's just that a year ago we were on the road to nowhere, and now you've turned our lives around, and I'm still getting used to it. Nine months may sound a long time, but it's nothing. Look how far we've come and what we've achieved. If I could boast to my friends I would! Nine months ago I was having problems even getting an erection. Now all you have to do is talk about spanking and I see your nipples stand up on end and I stand to attention. I'm not trying to go backwards, but you have to understand that it's been a near vertical learning curve for me.
I love you Ami, I really do, but suddenly we are doing things, you are doing things, that I never even dared to dream of, and the ordinary man on the street hardly knows exist."
My eyes were filling with tears yet again. Talk about a crying fest! My guilt was eating me up, chewing on my bones and spitting them out.
"I just hate the way I feel," I told him. "All those years we could have been having such fun. I just never knew about some of these things. The few times you suggested something new, it scared me half to death. Why didn't you insist?"
"How could I? Why would I? You don't do that when you love someone, Ami. Remember the first time I suggested a blow job? You were nearly sick on the spot."
"Because I didn't understand. And you didn't help a bit. It's your fault we were so boring!"
"So now it's my fault?" Dan was doing his best to control his anger. "Don't forget I didn't know much either. People didn't do all this sleeping around in our day. Bloody hell, your dad would've been down on us like a ton of bricks if he saw my car outside your place early in the morning. Don't you remember that night you stayed over at my house when my parents were away on holiday, and the milkman woke us up and we panicked thinking my old man was rattling on the door?!"
I giggled and blew my nose again. "Alright, so you weren't boring. But it's just that I feel so stupid. Like I've wasted so much time."
"You can't keep drowning in all this regret. You have to let it go and move on. I'm happy with our lives now, aren't you?"
I turned into his chest and cried once more. He stroked my hair and hugged me. It was awful. I hate this thing called 'age'.
We reaffirmed our love for each other in the best possible way. There was no spanking, and we both had to keep our voices down. My loud moans, anyway!
I never got to talk about a safe word. It would have been a step too far. I'll keep it on the back burner for future conversations.
I know now that he won't let me off lightly in the future. He's going to spank me hard and I'll just have to cope with it. I know it will only be when I deserve it. But I will have to trust him to stop when he knows I've had enough. And that's a good thing.
The other thing is that I plan to ask him for a spanking again. A spanking to assuage all this guilt I am carrying around with me. We need to wipe the slate. I know that until we do, I can't move forwards emotionally.
This has not been the easiest of weeks, but I think we have both moved even closer if that can be possible. Even though we started off, nine months ago, a million miles apart, we are steadily closing the gap. It's not easy, and we still don't know where we are, or what we are doing half of the time.
"You do like this don't you?" I asked him.
"Of course I do," he replied. "But I can't just move from A to Z and miss out all the middle bit. I need to consider it, to practise it, to savour it. It's worlds away from how we used to be, but the tools are unfamiliar, and I need to learn the best way of using them."
He arched an eyebrow.
"I think you are using them fine. Just fine." I replied.