I sent Spitfire to bed with a smile today. A small parcel with tea, more origami stars I make, some pens, and the most important thing – a Tardis slouchy hat – had arrived today. She held off opening it till she could get me on skype right before I had to go do the dentist thing. I hate the dentist, but I had been having a very bad last few days.
Of all the things in the box, the hat was the one thing she loved the most. It was the first thing she took out, and she put it on without hesitation. It was the one thing she kept playing with, and she even sent me a selfie of her going to sleep with it on.
Just before she went to sleep, I asked her with one word if she had any tasks for me.
“Make a blog post about how you’ve helped me this past week.”
Helped her? She helped me. Even with all the chaos going on in her life, even with how she’s waiting to tell me the other shoe has finally dropped with her father, she did the helping, not me.
I don’t understand what she means when I helped her.
I sent the parcel on Thursday. Sending it Thursday seems to have a quick connection to her country. It’s as if all the planes and transports line up perfectly and switching from the one postal system to the next is almost easy as pie. Sending it Thursday means it arrives Tuesday or Wednesday. Sending it Wednesday means it arrives Tuesday or Wednesday. Sending it Friday means it will be stuck in the mail for over a week.
I had pushed to finish the hat and add other things that I know she would like and enjoy, to help her deal with stress. She had bought me a 2Tb backup drive. I had to pay her back somehow. She had fallen in love with the unfinished hat and I had hemmed and hawed for two months. Finally, I had to knit it and get it done.
It was gone. In the process of sending it out, I had picked up a new skein of yarn and it was caked up that night, cast onto needles, and was being knit before she woke up.
I have an emotional support animal substitute that I use. Our landlords will only allow seeing eye dogs here. Yes, I know the legality of it is in question, but the desire to have housing outweighs the need for a living support animal. Yes, I would want one for myself, and for one of my children, but it’s not going to happen, not without several hoops to jump through, and at least a few miles of red tape. An inanimate substitute, one of many I’ve had over the years, is what I have.
Low-income housing is like that – lots of rules, but only about 1/2 of the rent we could be paying. Our electricity and heating are subsidized too.
The support animal, henceforth known as “Cupcake,” went missing.
I don’t know exactly when she poofed, but she was gone.
I treat this stuffie almost like a real animal, except I can stuff her in a pocket, and I don’t have to worry about litter box or feeding. In my mind, she’s alive and breathing, cuddling up against me and more. In my mind’s eye she curls up against me at night, and she nuzzles me awake in the morning.
It doesn’t matter that she’s just a toy to anyone else, to me, she’s real enough.
So she went missing. About two years ago, she went missing for the better part of 6 months. After the first three weeks, I ordered a replacement from Amazon. “Berry” is not Cupcake. Berry feels male, Cupcake feels female. Cupcake finally showed up again after 6 months, exactly where I theorized where she was, during a thorough purge of our home.
Cupcake is usually not too far from where I am. She would be hiding in my bag, my purse, sitting on my desk, or I would be curled around her when I slept. Her disappearance, even with Berry as a substitute for her, rattled me.
My anxiety level started to skyrocket. So did Spitfire’s for her own reasons, and without Cupcake to pet, I started to bounce off of Spitfire in a bad way. I have managed to convince her to make fractal pictures. She loves doing those. I love feeling the fall into them. It’s trippy.
The conversation began at a low point, when Spitfire said, “I have to conquer you, again?”
“Yes! I need it. I need to feel owned.” I hadn’t come clean yet about my emotional needs. About Cupcake. I know Spitfire knew I had stuffies I cuddled with and loved, but I don’t think she knew how much I depended on Cupcake to help me deal with things others take for granted.
“What do you need, mine?”
“I’m exhausted,” I told her the truth. “In supporting you so much, I’ve neglected my own needs as your girl. Doing your sets is taxing. Supporting you is pushing me to my brink. I’m tantrummy. I feel neglected.”
What do you need, mine? I can’t help you if you won’t talk to me.”
“Since you’re not able to be dominant towards me, can I find a dominant I know and trust?”
She hemmed and hawed this for a few, and she stated that she no longer believed that I would be easily collared by another dominant, and stolen from her. I did look. The one I really trust has not been able to make any time for me, so once again, Spitfire and I did the dance.
“I have to conquer you again! I’ve failed as a dominant! We’re back to square one.”
I spent time explaining to her that she didn’t have to start at the beginning again. Being conquered is a feeling that some subs get when they need to be “put in their place” and reconnect with their owners. This isn’t something malicious or vicious being asked of their owners, but a reconnection and sense of belonging.
“I need to be at your knee. I need mindsilence. I need the quiet I get sitting there.”
It was an eternity in a moment before she replied. “I can do that for you.”
So, when she woke up, after my Whip shift, I spent several hours at her knee. The trigger phrase slipped from her fingers and into my mind, “be a good dollie and submit for your mistress.”
I felt the instant IQ drop. My shoulders rolled, and I sighed in happy contentment. She could give me this.
It wasn’t enough, but it was a start. Several hours of it helped. A lot.
She has done a couple of more evenings like that, and in the process, we talked a whole lot. I came clean about why I had been so out of sorts, and she explained more about how her form of autism affects her. Not only was my anxiety level reaching maximum stress, but my OCD was coming up. I fight to keep that down to a dull roar. Thankfully, I don’t have the “wash hands 30 times a day” type of OCD. I do have the “everything must be perfectly arranged and in place” type. Knitting both helps the OCD and drives it nuts because if I leave even one mistake in a project, I will go crazy trying to find it.
“You’ll find Cupcake,” she reassured me during one of my IQ drops at her knee.
It was another day before I found her, in a cloth shopping bag of mine. *eyeroll*
She was with me when I went to the dentist today. She was with me when I had a catnap cause I didn’t sleep well last night. She’s within three feet of me right now, protecting my knitting project.
My anxiety levels have dropped. My desire to tantrum has dropped. I am feeling a whole lot more balanced again.
I still don’t see how I helped Spitfire.
I’ve counselled her on what may happen when the other shoe drops. How she may react. Why she is reacting the way she is. Why she’s so stressed. Why we’re having problems connecting. Why she’s subtly expecting me to make all the choices for her, because she can’t make them for herself. Why it’s hard for me to make those decisions when it wasn’t really something we negotiated in the first place.
I need my domlyskirts back. I need to know that she’s feeling strong and powerful and confident again when I’m on my knees in front of her.
Spitfire won’t be fully able to domme me for a while. Can you blame her? I know what it’s like waiting for the other shoe to drop. In a way, I’m jealous of her because she can _be_ there for when it happens.
Oh, to win the lottery and show up in her country about 3 weeks later. One small problem – YARN! I’d head straight to the nearest yarn shop and wouldn’t come out for hours. She’d have to drag me out, kicking and screaming, “But It’s YARN!!!!”
I still don’t understand how I’ve helped her.
Maybe someone can explain it to me like I’m five or something.