Conversations and growth . . .

I had a couple of opportunities this week that reminded me of how powerful it can be to just talk with other slaves whose paths are similar to my own. To listen to their stories, hear my own path in their words, and think about my journey in new and different ways. It’s something I don’t take the time to do very often.

Life gets busy, I get bogged down with life stresses, and then just sort of hibernate, as an introvert is wont to do. I think, “I want to go to that discussion,” but then I’m so tired or just feeling overwhelmed by life, and I make the decision to stay home and just rest or do the chores that have been put on the back burner. I forget that sometimes recharging means visiting with others and not just sitting in my own space.

I wonder sometimes if I’m the only slave whose Master is the only person she turns to when she needs to talk, who is the sole focus of her time and thoughts. I wonder how many other Masters and slaves have made their world a bubble, venturing out on occasion, but really spending the majority of their non-working time together. We tend to do everything together. It’s not very often at all that one or the other of us ventures out alone. We pick activities that allow us both to go because we value our time together and just don’t like being apart. If we could start a business together, we probably would so that we didn’t have to be apart for work.

And then the intellectual in me wonders, is this healthy? And I have to remind myself that our relationship is healthy, we are interdependent not co-dependent. And I look at my parents and others like them, people who have lived vanilla all their lives, and realize they tend to spend almost all of their time together, too. I think about how my grandfather reacted when my grandmother passed away. She was his life, and only by marrying again was he able to fully function. He had lost his ability to operate because the partner he had shared his life with for almost 60 years was no longer there. So I realize it’s not just us, and it’s not necessarily unhealthy.

But visiting with other slaves whose paths are similar to my own allows me the opportunity to, first, remind myself that there are other women out there who are living lives very similar to my own, that we aren’t all that weird in the way we choose to live our lives. Second, it allows me to hear my own thoughts, my own insecurities, my own successes and failures, in someone else’s words. It allows me the opportunity to hear how someone else has handled something that gets bogged down in the negative in my head, and to think in new ways about things that bother me. It also allows me to get my head back in the game, so to speak, and helps me find new ways to be mindful in my service to Sir.

Listening to other women talk about their own success and failures allows me to both validate their experience and my own. No matter how secure, how fulfilled, or how confident we are, we all have times or experiences that we struggle with and that affect our own feeling of security and confidence. By talking and listening to others who struggle with similar things, we can increase their feelings of security as well as our own. External validation is something that most of us need on occasion. Someone or something that reminds us we’re perfectly okay.

I had a private conversation with another slave whose life experiences have been very similar to my own, particularly recently. We were talking about very private things, things that are difficulties or creating stress in our lives, things that one rarely talks about in public, and in my case, almost never talks about to another person even in private. She said to me that she knew that I had stress in my life, but that I carry it well. At first, I was surprised by the statement. But then I realized that my family trained me well, the game face still works.

I’ve always been a very private person. It’s rare the person I allow inside to see everything. People can use that stuff against me, you know, to hurt me. Plus, people don’t want to be burdened with my whining. Suck it up, buttercup. That’s the way I’ve always viewed those things, specifically because that’s the way those things were treated by my family when I was growing up. Even now, it’s still difficult for me to talk about the struggles. It makes me feel weak. But isn’t it funny that I don’t view others as weak when they come to me with similar things. I find I just want to help them in whatever way I can, even if it’s only to listen. I have many friends who are slaves, many women I know and have spent time with. But I don’t really have a close friend, a confidant, and I haven’t in many, many years. Even as ‘outgoing’ as I seem, I tend to be a very private, very introverted person.

Thinking about all of those things has kind of brought me to a new realization this week. First, I need to stop thinking of going to a slave/submissive activity as selfish and actually make it a priority to do this on some sort of regular basis. It is not selfish to need to spend time with other slaves on occasion, particularly when it helps to recharge me and brings me balance and growth. Second, it is important for me to cultivate a close friendship with another slave. One in which we can both bare our souls to another without fear of judgment. Someone to be a sounding board, to help lift each other up when we are down, to just listen to us vent or cry when we need it.

Both require Sir’s permission. The first is easy. The second, not so much.

But both are important. And so, my intention is to cultivate both. It may be a slow process, and I may not be consistent at first, but I will begin to make both a priority.

And by writing it down, by saying it out loud, it’s now a part of the Universe. And that makes my chances for success all the greater.

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