After I graduated from college, Rafa and I moved from the East Coast to Los Angeles. We did this by driving my trusty and most beloved car, Sandcat, in route which was carefully planned so that we could visit a number of significant people and do lots of fun stuff on the way there. It was my first significant road trip, and I was certainly hooked on them right away. While we were traveling, we stopped to visit a friend of my biological father’s and his wife. We lingered there for a while due to the calm and relaxing nature of their home. They live in the woods, close enough to get in the truck and drive to town but far enough away that one feels entirely alone on their land. At first, the quiet was terrifying to me, but as I became comfortable with the sense of stillness, I came to focus on the hum of cicadas at night, the rush of a deer moving through the branches, the smell of the Earth or the tranquility of the slow moving river. I found a sense of peace there that I had simply never been aware of in my life until then.
During a conversation with one of my hosts, he talked to me about internal stillness. He took an index card, and on one side he wrote “Be everywhere, always.” He then turned it over and wrote “Be here, now.” He gave this to me, and reminded me that this was a choice that I had the ability to make. I could decide to simply exist in the place and moment I was in, regardless of whether or not I was cut off from cell phone reception and surrounded by natural beauty. I kept this in my mind, but it took me another couple of years to take the full meaning of it. It’s a lesson that Malignus taught me early in our relationship, and which I have needed to be reminded of many times since then.
I tend to want to be everywhere, always. This has only been made worse by the fact that I have a wonderful array of friends and lovers who are literally spread across the globe. This weekend, someone I love had a hard day. I wanted to be with her. Another group of my loved ones and friends got together for a party which seems to have been an incredible amount of fun. I wanted to be with them. Yet another very special friend is celebrating a huge milestone in her life right now. I wanted to be there with her.
Physically, due to the fact that I’m not a super-human, I don’t have a choice whether or not I’m everywhere, always or here, now. If I had that ability, this situation would be different. Instead, I only have the mental ability to choose where I will keep my focus. I can split my attention between the hundreds of things that need doing, the myriads of people that I love and the adventures that I could be having or will be having in the future. Or, I can choose to focus on my here and now and belong in the moment I’m living. This is a battle for me. It’s something that, I hope, if I spend enough time working on will eventually become second nature to me. I’ve been stressing recently. I’ve had a lot of things going on. By focusing on the here and now, I’ve been slowly starting to relax and unwind, to calm my feelings and to keep my attention where it belongs.
This is also something which is very relevant to spanking for me. My brain is often in a lot of places. I’m worrying about ten things, thinking of what I’m going to write about next, what I’m going to cook for dinner, whether all my bills are paid, who I said I’d call, whether I’ve kept up all my obligations for all my Bosses of Me, who I miss, where I’m going next et cetera, et cetera. I used to find that a spanking was difficult to take until it got to a point of intensity where it overwhelmed me and therefore pushed all these other things out of my brain. Once I reached this place, I was able to give myself over to it better and get much more out of it.
After Shadowlane, when I returned home after six weeks of being away, Malignus spanked me in a way that was very loving and which made me feel very much at home again. Before he did so, I got in position over his lap with my bottom bare and was prepared to be spanked. He then instructed me to put away all my adventures, all my memories and stories and to choose, essentially, to be there and then. He lead me to focus on making the choice to put all those things away before the spanking began. I felt much safer, more vulnerable and, more than anything else, much more calm at the onset of that spanking, instead of having to struggle through things until the point where the spanking overwhelmed me and pushed them away. It was a very important lesson, and one which I’ve tried my best to keep in mind for all spankings since then. Because, really, for a spanko, what moment is more precious to linger in than a spanking? Sure, it can be scarier and often more painful if you give it your full focus, but that’s really the point. I’d certainly rather have a more pure experience than one which is watered down by the rest of my life. Choosing to be relaxed at the onset of a spanking also allows me to leave it in a more elevated space as opposed to simple using the spanking as something to return me to an even keel.
Does anyone else find that they have these sorts of problems focusing on the here and now? I can’t imagine that it’s uncommon. We live in a world of interconnectivity, of long distance friendships, of tweeting and texting and live feeds. Even when we physically shut down our computers and put down our phones, our minds are often still functioning at this speed and in this manner. Fellow bottoms, do you find that a spanking can center your mind? Does anyone else have the experience of needing to be overwhelmed in order to let go? Do you do anything to keep yourself here and now while being spanked? Or is this not an issue for other people? Does just the sight of your Top with an implement in hand snap you back to reality, or is your complete attention something that he has to work for? I’m curious to know others’ experiences. 😀