My Soul in a Vise Grip – and What About those Chakras?

{Saturday}

Ok, I’ve been feeling a bit less like pond scum since I was assured that there would be no problem finding my cat a good home, so that’s helpful.  I’m discovering that now I’m just really sad.  That sense of relief I was expecting has not kicked in yet and I keep crying.  Little things are making me cry – not all of them connected directly to the cat, but to feeling a sense of loss.

My job is one of the things that’s been difficult today.  I wanted to take some time off to grieve, but wasn’t able to do that because of some projects that are coming up.  And I feel like I’m being micro-managed to the point of not being able to move.  I don’t do so well with that.  So between that and missing my cat, I feel like this:

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Ok, so that’s a picture of a heart in a vice grip, not a soul.  That’s because I could not find a picture of a soul in a vise grip.   In fact, when you google images for soul, you get pictures like this:

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And I’m pretty sure you couldn’t even get that into a vise grip, much less tighten the grip.

Anyhow.  My heart is probably a bit pinched too.

So then i started thinking about how out of alignment my Chakras must be about now.  And wondering which ones were really out of whack.  So I pulled up this image:

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and pondered. My solar plexus – energy, vitality, desire/power – feels off.  I feel a lack of energy and a lack of power.

My heart Chakra is definitely unbalanced.  I needed to re-home my cat, for his sake and for mine.  It would have been nice if i could have done that with love and compassion – for him and for me.  Instead, i carried anger and shame.

And my throat Chakra.  Communication, creativity, and healing.  I’m not feeling a sense of creativity or healing.  I feel dry.  As if i could choke on my words, or need to moisten them with tears.  My well of creativity feels dry.  And i’m in need of healing – and not in touch with resources with in myself to make that happen.

Clearly, with those Chakras unbalanced, the Third Eye can’t possibly be balanced, and I assure you it isn’t.

Also, y’all know that i have no idea if i’m doing this Chakra thing right, but it feels right to me, and maybe it’s helpful.

{Sunday…}

Feeling better today, and beginning to feel more balanced too, thank goodness.  It occurred to me sometime after i started this yesterday that i have dismantled my life as it was and am rebuilding it slowly.  Stop and think about that for a minute.

In my 60s and I have taken my life as it was and essentially removed just about everything.  The things around me – where i lived, my house, my volunteer work, my office, my clients, friends i could see irl, and some of my identities – gone.  And i’m continuing the process.  i guess eventually i’ll be stripped down to the most essential me.

Except i’m also adding back on.  A new house, a closer connection with family, a new career path, new identities…

It is not surprising that i am a bit out of whack.  It’s not surprising that i am out of sorts more often than i used to be.  It is possible that i need to be more patient and less irritated with myself.  This morning, it seems like i might be able to do that.

This is not exactly the BDSM blog i once thought it would be either.  So there’s that.  But while there’s life, there’s hope, right?

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Sex, Power, and Leadership: An online Conference {Free}

Sex, Power, and Leadership:

A Free Online Conference 

It occurs to me that some of you might be interested in this free online conference which starts Monday.  I should have mentioned it sooner, but better late than… you know, never.

Consensual Power Exchange as an Antidote to Patriarchy is one of the segments.  The line up of amazing speakers for this part is Lee Harrington and Midori, who are classic instructors and gurus in BDSM along with a couple of other people I hadn’t heard of, Kali Williams and Laura Antoniou, who might be equally famous.

The Power of Birth and Medicine: Where Sex and Power Intersect and Sex, Power & Trauma in Gynecology, Birth, & Motherhood also looked super interesting to me.  Ok, actually, it all looked super interesting to me.  Because I am a maniac, I spent the $100 to get the videos too, with workbooks for journaling and such.   I think the audio and workbooks package is $50, but I’m hoping to catch a lot of it “live.”  {Most of the presentations are videos, but the group watching is live and I’m assuming there’s an opportunity for interaction there.}

Anyhow.  Just wanted to pass that on.

Thanks for the support yesterday, I am feeling less like pond scum, which is nice.  I had started a different post, and will come back to it, I’m sure, but wanted to share the conference right away.

 

 

 

 

FFF 4-27

So this morning, i jumped on the scale and discovered that i was at almost exactly the same weight i was at last week, and possibly the week before that.  I’ve been fluctuating by about .4 pounds – point 4, not 4.  Today’s number was at the bottom of the range, but still.  So, in an inspired moment, i took off the light robe i was wearing and jumped back on, confident the scale would go down another .1 or .2.  But —

NO.

It did not go down.  It went up .2.  UP.  Which i thought had to be a mistake.   So i tried again.  Nope.  Same weight.

Sigh.

But, i can’t complain because i’m back to living the sedentary life.   About 31,000 steps all week.  That’s an average of less than 5,000 a day.  Sigh.

And on the plus side, glucose levels are still fine.

I’m getting some boxes unpacked, so that’s good.  But i can’t get a whole lot done until my closet is finished, so there’s that.

And really, i’m not caring a whole lot about any of that at the moment.  Today i’m taking my cat to be re-homed.  I can’t get him to consistently use the litter box.   He’s been to the vet, there’s nothing wrong with him, but i can’t take care of him.  I’m not going through the whole story here, but trust me, i can’t keep him.  And i’m not sure they’ll find him a home – he’s old and i guess i could have had him put to sleep, but i don’t think he’s that bad off.

Anyhow.

I woke up every hour all night long, just feeling sick, but really, i don’t have any reasonable choices.  And i could spend all morning here, just kind of repeating over and over that i feel like lowlife scum, but i can’t see a realistic other way to deal with my cat’s issues.

And you know – cause here in this blog is where i get most honest – part of the reason i feel so guilty is because it’s going to be such a relief when i’m not trying to deal with him anymore.  Yep.  Pond scum, that’s what i am.

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Ok.  So, in other news, i am on the verge of a new career move, which i’m excited about, when i’m not feeling like pond scum.  More later…

 

 

Power Exchange Relationships

MP likes to watch TV while he works (yes, he can definitely do both.)  Since we don’t have cable, we don’t get a lot of channels, so he usually watches that channel that plays shows from the 50s and 60s, some from the 70s.  But all really old shows, some of them even before my time.  Father Knows Best, for goodness sake.  Dennis the Menace.

Sometimes, they catch my attention as I pass his open door, and I pause to watch a little bit before I shake my head – in amusement,  dismay, or occasionally disgust.  And I move on.  Occasionally, I am so fascinated and appalled that I end up watching longer than I intended – just like a train wreck, I think, as I tear myself away.

It’s a cultural potpourri, from the Patty Duke show to The Beverly Hillbillies to The Rifleman.  All the shows of my youth.  I know the theme songs, recognize the music and can sing along.  Sad to say, I remember some of the episodes.  (“Oh, isn’t that the one where Patti sells her necklace and then Cathy wants to borrow it…)

So it wasn’t unusual today when I heard a particular musical phrase and knew immediately that it was Bewitched.  That sound they would play when Samantha would wiggle her nose and do some magic.  Of course that made me think about Darren, her irritating husband who didn’t want her to do magic at all.   And she mostly went along with that. Her reward for that was what?  She got to clean house the mundane way?  She got to be married to him? Yikes.  It never had seemed like a good trade off to me, even back in the day.

Today, I had just finished reading the latest post on Smiling Through the Evil, so I had D/s relationships on my mind.  And it struck me that there is an element of power exchange in Bewitched.  Samantha has power, as we all do.  She agrees to let Darrin control it, she tamps it down and keeps it under wraps, because he wants her to. Purely consensual, even though it’s harder for her to do things, even though there are things she’s sacrificing.  Interesting, isn’t it?

And then I thought about I Dream of Jeannie – there’s another one who’s required to give up her magic.  She even calls Major Whatever-his-name-was “Master.”  Ok, she’s a genie, and BDSM was probably all leather back in those days and maybe it even seemed normal.  But still – could the M/s of that be any more clear?

True, she isn’t a very good submissive, or slave, even in her harem outfit, since she’s always using her magic to get him – and herself -into and out of trouble.  But it’s the same idea – like Samantha, she’s expected to hide her power – to give him the control.  Darren and Master are only pleased with them when they’re not exercising their abilities.

I don’t quite know where I’m going with this.  I mean, from my perspective, making yourself smaller, denying your own power, isn’t the goal of D/s, and probably isn’t what most couples are working for.  It always seemed to me that my ability to serve in a D/s relationship increased my ability to be who I am and made me more complete, not less.    And I think that whatever power I have in my life increases my ability to serve in a D/s relationship.  But then what do I know.

And maybe Jeanie and Samantha felt that way too.  It’s just interesting…

 

 

 

 

FFF – 4-20

I found my scale – yay!  Sadly, i don’t think i lost any weight – or maybe half a pound.  This is particularly sad because i’ve added more activity and for a while was eating less.  Sigh.  Life is just not fair.

On the other hand, my step count is good!  The week we moved, I got over 61,000 steps!  Since that’s an average of over 8,500 steps/day, and my goal was set for 7,000, my Fitbit kept telling me i was an overachiever, which made me laugh.   But i was on vacation then, and moving, so i think it will be more of a challenge to hit my 7,000 goal this week.

I’m not doing terribly with food, and my daily levels aren’t bad, but i don’t feel great about my relationship with food either.  I am still in that “food as reward” mind set so when i don’t get my daily quota of treat foods, i feel deprived and have to make up for it later.  This is not a sustainable model.  I’m at a point in my life that dieting is not the answer.  I need to permanently change my relationship with food.  (i know, i keep saying that and not doing it.)

I found this on FB today – it expresses the change i want to make.*

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It’s not the first time i’ve become aware that this is the change i need.  So if i’m even halfway serious about it, i need to start to practice it.  Sigh.  More mindful eating,   Not casting care to the winds and cramming that one treat in.  Savoring. Enjoying.  Contemplating my choices.

Right now, sitting here at 730 a.m., it seems easy.  Very zen – and i can feel my spirit affirming the desire to do this.  i know how to eat mindfully and i know how much more satisfying it is than eating mindlessly.  Right now, i could easily do it.

But by dinner time?  No.  Then i feel this semi-frenzied sense of being  perched precariously on the verge of starvation.  As if i’m going to collapse right there on the spot if i don’t get just the right food and plenty of it.   Even though there is exactly no chance of that happening.

What is that?  What happens between right now and then that throws me into such a state?  And how do i quit doing it?

Ok, anyhow, i have continued to organize my stuff a little bit, but we’ve had people – electricians, plumbers, and a carpenter – working on the house all week, so there are lots of boxes that i can’t empty yet.  It will all get better once our closet gets built.  Or i won’t have a good excuse for it  not getting better… how ever that works.

i did tell MP that i was going to a munch one of these days.  We were in the car, on the way home from dinner.  He said, “Oh, I didn’t know they had those here.”

I looked at him, a bit surprised – why would he think they didn’t?  But i just said, “Yeah, they do.  Wow, look at that sunset.”

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And that was that.

When it’s time for me to go, if he wants to come with me, i will say no.  If he wants to go to munches and get involved in the lifestyle, he can take the initiative and do some research himself.  He’s on Fetlife.  It’s not up to me to make arrangements for him to go.  He can’t frigging tag along with me.  No.

I felt better once i made that decision.  Now it’s up to me to follow through.

 

*If you couldn’t see the meme, here’s what it said:

Diet Mindset vs Intuitive Eating

How to flip the script and break free of diet mentality

Can I have this? vs Do I want this?

How do I look? vs How do I feel?

How much food do I get today?  vs  How much food do I need today?

Will this make me skinny?  vs  Will this nourish me?

I exercise so I can eat  vs  I eat so i can exercise

I can eat whatever I want on my cheat day vs I can eat whatever I want every day

Food is my worst enemy and my favorite reward  vs  Food is just food.

Pondering on Day 7; The Vacation Continues

Yes, today is actually Day 10 of my vacation, with tomorrow being the very last day.  But I started this post on Day 7.  Back on Thursday, I wrote:

I did go to the beach for a walk yesterday, and then had a lovely evening with my friend, although we skipped yoga.  Maybe next time.  Instead, we ate sushi and had a beer – that’s kind of like yoga, right?

I ran across this on Facebook today:

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It says that the Greeks had six words for love, and defines them.  Full disclosure – one of the first comments on the FB post was by someone with a Greek sounding name.  They said that half of this is bullshit not true.  He didn’t say exactly which half, but that’s ok. I know that Eros is accurate, and Agape love is a thing.  I know they had a word for friendship love, although I don’t know that it was Philia.  The rest of them may be imaginary – but that’s ok.  If they don’t exist – they should.

So the meme has:

Eros – which is sexual desire and passion.  Erotic love.  We are all familiar with that one, named after Eros, the son of Aphrodite, goddess of sexual love and beauty.  His father might have been Zeus, Ares, or Hermes.  Hmmmm, I didn’t learn that in my childhood book of mythology.

Philia – which it describes as deep loyalty to friends.  Good says it’s friendship and affection, so that sounds right.  But it’s also the word that denotes an “abnormal love for an object or thing” – what we often call fetishes.  Most notably pedophilia, not to be confused with podophilia, which is love of feet or  bibliophilia, love of books.  But I digress.  “Philia” is also friendship or affection for friends.

Ludos – they define as “Playful Love.”  This one, based on my initial, brief google search, was completely made up.  No such word as “ludos.” But then i saw a Psychology Today article that also talks about types of love and ludic was one.  Of course, it could still be totally made up.  Anyhow.  It’s non-committed love – flirting, dancing, sex without strings.

Agape – Love for everyone.   This one is pretty commonly known and talked about in some religious congregations – considered “God-like” love – often meaning not sexual or romantic.  I experience as that rush of love one gets sometimes when you’re with a group of people when you feel a sense of belonging and connection.

Pragma -Like pragmatic, right?  The meme says “developed over time,” Other sources say it is practical, mutually beneficial love, with low sexual intensity.  Lots of relationships like this.

Philautia– Described as “taking care of self,” but it’s actually self-love, so it can be healthy or unhealthy.  At it’s worst, it’s hubris, or excessive pride – thinking that the rules don’t apply to you, a kind of narcissistic specialness that inflates self.  Of course that’s not really “love” at all in my book, but that’s one way to look at it.

At the healthy end is self-esteem and self-care (which is not self-indulgence, but a radical act of love involving self- discipline.)

Storge (pronounced Store-gay) is a 7th type of love, found in Psychology Today, but of course it wouldn’t have fit in the meme.  This kind is familial love, particularly a parent’s love for their children, which is not unilateral but also “fondness bred out of need or familiarity.”  Which could overlap with Pragma, right?

In fact many of the types have overlap, blend or can morph into one another.  You can start with Luidic love, move into erotic, and wind up in Pragma or Storge.  You could start with pragma or agape and move through Eros.  All kinds of possibilities.  i know in my relationship with MP,  we went from Eros to some mix of Philia or Storge, with a touch of Pragma.

So what am i looking for in a Dom?  Eros?  I don’t know – that doesn’t seem quite right.  How do you describe the love a submissive has for her Dom – is it one of the above?  Is it the same as any other relationship, or is it different?

Goodreads has 65,087 quotes about love.  2,202 are tagged self-love.  Including this one:

“Dare to love yourself
as if you were a rainbow
with gold at both ends.”

― Aberjhani