"Ouch! What was that for?"
"Because you needed it."
I grinned from ear to ear because it proved that Dan was feeling better.
It's been a long haul, and we aren't completely out of the woods yet due to Dan having problems with his salivary glands, (they swell from time to time and he looks like a chipmunk) but I am hopeful that at last we can begin to return to a semblance of normality.
I feel as if I have done nothing but stop/start over the past year. In the end I just had to stand back and make the decision to take a break. In view of the fact that we chalked up more than twenty five hospital visits to five hospitals, I think I made the right decision.
All I can say is that we are both feeling very relieved that the large cyst found (totally by accident during a shoulder scan) in Dan's chest, has been removed, and has been found to be completely benign.
I am not going to refer to all our various medical problems any more, but instead I wanted to write about what it is like to be forced to take a break from ttwd and the resultant effects.
I remember very well, in the past, reading various wailings and gnashing of teeth when this happened to other people, but it is the first time it has happened to us. Like all new experiences, it takes some getting your head around. For me, at any rate.
We gradually ground to a halt around November. Spankings got fewer and fewer, and finally, due to the pain it was causing Dan, stopped altogether.
It is very easy to blame the husband when this happens. I realise that now. But actually, I think it is a measure of the strength of ttwd that you know in your heart that at some time in the future you will continue.
What was its effect on me?
I slid. No doubt about that. I think, to a certain extent, that you are bound to slide.
We were in the very comfortable position of Dan taking the lead and making all the final decisions. You can get rather complacent about it. Sometimes he would moan that I left too much to him. But then I would simply remind him that I was meant to have my say in order that he could then make an 'informed decision'. That way I couldn't turn around and accuse him of ignoring my opinion, and of being domineering.
Sometimes Dan will decide that my way is best. Just because the man leads, doesn't make him right all the time. Dan is usually right, but it is nice to know that the five per cent (or whatever) of times I am right he will acknowledge that fact.
However, you remember the Captain of the Ship thing? How the wife is the Number 2 in line of command? I can honestly say that there have been months when I have had to completely take over and steer the ship.
I was happy to do so, but extremely happy that at the back of my mind I had a little voice that assured me that Dan would be taking over again as soon as he was able.
Steering the ship comes with its problems.
It didn't take any time at all for me to return to the old Ami who walked all over Dan, who disagreed with everything he said and refused to discuss why, who got ratty and bad-tempered, and who got extremely stressed.
It was necessary at times, almost as a means of self defence against the dark side of Dan. I can tell you that he is a most wonderful husband, but a hopeless patient. Like the majority of men, he is not very good at being told to rest, to takes things easy, to stop moaning. (eg they shaved areas of his chest to put heart monitors into position, and Dan is still moaning about how itchy it is. For goodness sake, when I think about us girls and waxing, it makes me frenzied!
So about a week ago he pops me one on my bottom. The day after, if the worktops weren't made of granite, and the window didn't look straight out on to the street, things might have been very hot indeed. (Actually I was terrified Dan's lung might collapse again or something.)
Then I noticed the swats were definitely back. Even in passing. Even in front of friends.
My time as Captain was over. I wondered how long before the real spanking came along.
I didn't have to wait long. The paddle was produced and Dan made up for his absence. My bottom was glowing. I thought there might be bruises, or at least some marks after such a long pause, but no, just a very healthy shade of crimson.
It never ceases to amaze me that I can go about my day surreptitiously rubbing my rear end, and yet the redness is gone within the hour. Now how can that be? Dan never holds back. It continues to have a warm/sore feeling, but nothing the eye can see. Sigh.
At one point I implored him to remember to give me a warm up. Dan, happily paddling away simply informed me that "This is the warm up."
How do I feel now he is back in charge? One word. Relieved. I don't enjoy being the shrewish wife any more. Leading is just too tough. I prefer the peace and harmony we worked so hard to achieve. That means I am the back up.
And believe me, I still don't feel like I have a single submissive bone in my body. I am too sassy for my own good. My mouth often has a life of its own. Just not so much these days as in the past.
"Come here, I'm going to give you a smack" he says. (Heaven knows why he can't use the word 'spank'.) My heart literally leaps with joy.
We mostly have fun spankings these days. Drool.
This doesn't mean that the other type are off limits, but that once you become a spankoholic it seems silly not to take advantage of it. Smirk.
I continue get "Do as you are told" from Dan. I continue to get the raised eyebrow. I continue to get the occasional flurry of hard and stinging swats across the tops of my thighs when I have rocked the boat.
But the best thing is that we have sailed close to the wind and the boat hasn't overturned.
Neither of us have been hit by the boom as she came around, nor messed up the lines, nor torn the sails.
I want to thank all of you who have helped keep us afloat. Dan has had some of the most wonderfully rude and funny cards, and kind messages.
I do hope that I can manage to blog a little more regularly. I still need to buy a new keyboard and a remote controlled mouse, but hey, what is that in the grand scheme of things!