Tethered to the earth


1 1indigo2
I sell stories for a living. I use words as though they are reins to lead, starlight to inspire, stones to inform. I present them to people, surrounded by books, by the words of others I live my days and inspired, I write my own words in the evening, luxuriating in their forms and their sounds.

I read words for pleasure. I read in the bath, on the bus, on the tube, on his lap and in the dark when he thinks I am asleep.

I whisper words when he makes love to me, fervent little declarations and desires in his ear that make me curl up in shame afterwards.

I am all about the words.

But sometimes I lose every single word I own and all is lost.

I don’t know how it happens or exactly what makes it happen. It is always to do with temper, defence and fear. It is, I am embarrassed to say, not even to be compared to a child’s tantrum because it is a child’s tantrum but from an adult woman.

It happens in a split second, like the Incredible Hulk turning green or dandelion seeds being caught on a puff of wind.

I will give you an example but when I say it shames me you understand this is not an exaggeration.

I come home from work. DJ often works from home. That does not mean he does not work- it means as it says, he works from home. He has a full day just like mine. I get home and I am so excited to see him. It will be wonderful. It will be perfect. I dash up the path to the door.

1 1indigo1The door catches on a bit of carpet, not my carpet I think, his carpet that he chose before I was there to help. I  put my bag down and realise I need to vacuum.  He is there but suddenly his warm embrace is too much. I feel something start to undo in my head and ignore it. I go into the kitchen. There is a pan on the side he has used at lunchtime. It is crusted over and has not been put into soak. I must clean this pan and then I must do five or six other chores. I must do them now before looking at anything else.  No one else will do this; this pan is a sign of horror of decay.  I must do it with a grim face because the rage is coming and then I lose my words.

He stands and watches me for a moment. He doesn’t say anything. I will not look at him but I hear him leave the room. I wish he would not go; I want to hurl hate at him. I wish he would not go; I love him. I want him to hold me.

I slam the pan down in the sink and clean. I can’t tell you what I think or feel. I am just colours of deep ruddy brown, old blood, an atavistic rage that terrifies me. Deep inside, I sit curled in the darkest part of the cave scared of the mad woman and waiting to be rescued.

If you came to me now, I would literally have no words for you. All I could do would be to scream so I tighten my lips and save the whole world from the destruction of things left undone.

It takes maybe ten minutes, at worst twenty. There is nothing left to do. I sit on the sofa, drinking from the pot of tea he had made for me before I came in the door. I hear the door open. I still cannot look at him. I don’t have any words yet. I am aghast at myself but still hope it was him that made me so angry. I have no idea where to go next. The script is unwritten in my head and I cannot even pick the pen up. The pressure of words is too much.

When he takes me over his knee he does so without words. All either of us can hear is the sound of his hand on my bottom and after that my bitter shrieks that turn plaintive before many minutes. My cries literally soften as my bottom reddens and swells under his punishment.

Even though it is silent it is a punishment. We both know it and we both know I need it. It is hard, it is firm. His hand is like old leather, like school days wood, like stern eyes and takes me from my head to my bottom, the redness is on my skin and not in my heart.

I am silent when he stops. He says very little.

“Are you back now?”

“Yes,” I say, “ Please may I have a cuddle?”

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Several things occur to me about all of this.

Firstly is that this loss of temper is a new and an old thing. It is something I did as a child (I am sure you saw it for the tantrum it was). I think it has returned for two reasons. The stress of being surrounded by people, of the rush and noise of a city I am still learning to love. Also because DJ makes me feel safe enough to express anything, to be my most hateful self and each time he takes me through it he takes me somewhere forever.  I think I am altered by allowing myself to feel rage and by how he takes me home afterwards.

I am learning that this is what being led is. This is my worst self and he does not so much as flinch. If I could listen to his heart I am sure it would remain steady throughout.

I think this wordlessness is something shared by some women.  I think we are ashamed of it because it is the opposite of what we “should” be. We should be gentle and aware, we should be open and supportive; we should be word not action. Despite this, we are not always gentlewomen.

When I am stronger again this rage may be channelled to help. It might be that it is what spurs me to be brave when I am trying to defend someone. It might be the thing that will not let me rest when I have to make something better. But now, I am learning that my rage is not enough to intimidate the man that guides me, it is not a weapon that can hurt him.

It is not a weapon that can hurt me- not anymore. He will not let my rage destroy me.

When I lose my grounding, when my anger, fear and hopelessness detaches me from the whole world he is what brings me home, he tethers me to the earth and to what I know is true.

The only words that matter are his, “I love you. You are mine. I will protect you. You are home.”

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21 Responses to “Tethered to the earth”

  1. 1 ross

    Beautiful and so telling of your struggle with City life, you would do better in a quiet town like Mine (Poole Dorset) Be kind to your self, Hugs.

    • I would LOVE to live in Dorset. London feels like the loudest, most frenetic place sometimes. But – pubs, shopping and Mr B keep me here. (Pubs I don’t have to drive to!)

  2. 3 George

    Wonderful when women are women and men are men.

  3. Wonderful post. Love that you have each other.

  4. the best part of love. 🙂

  5. 9 MrJ

    Wonderful experience with communication through and beyond words.

    Told through beautiful words.

  6. I agree with everybody,s reponses and love the naked picture and poses.

  7. There has been much discussion in our relationship in the past few days about the “crusty pan” scenario. The things that trigger each other’s stuff.
    I have a question. Will you wash the pan you use at lunchtime now DJ? Or will you, Indigo, just decide that’s the way it is and live with it?



    • 15 DJ

      Rarely are there any pans left out if I have anything to do with it. I think Indigo was talking about a particular incident. If anyone leaves pans lying around in our house it is usually not myself. 😉

      • Thanks for answering DJ. It was impossible to put the whole of our thinking into a comment. And that rather stark question was what came out. Suffice to say, I could really relate to Indigo’s descent into awfulness over something seemingly trivial, but T also has a side where he will let things go which makes it harder to sort out. Indigo always sparks deep thinking in me with her writing. It’s good to have a reality check with you as well for balance. On with Ds living!!

        Much love


        • It is true, I am the messy one. 😦

          I think it is not the pan but the occasional disconnect from my true self that causes the problems. It is a learning curve and a happy one.

  8. Oh it’s lovely you can comment now Indigo!

    I relate to your experience so much. The deep hurts from the past that can emerge over nothing and need containment. I know how much “gathering up” I need in those moments and a spanking gets right through and restores me to my connected, loving self again.

    I’m sad you find London so difficult. It took me ages when I moved here 20 years ago to feel at home. For me, it was about building enough memories to feel part of the great whirling, restless mass of it. I felt bewildered at first.

    But I, selfishly, get lovely comfort from you being nearby. With your beautiful, poetic words you fill out the experience of Ds for me, and I love imagining I might chance upon you in a pub and talk. Voices in the corner…


  9. 20 Ripley

    What I like about this is that he saw that you were upset and he helped you through it. Even if spanking isn’t involved (as in a vanilla relationship) that is a wonderful thing for a partner to do. He didn’t leave you alone and let you stew until you got over it, he actively helped you. He paid attention to you. What a wonderful thing to do in any kind of relationship!

    • Thank you, Ripley. I agree – each couple finds their own way to.love and help one another and anyone who finds that is very lucky.

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