This week has been a bit of an experiment. Going away from home is not something I would usually do without HisLordship but I decided to take part in a school trip abroad. It seemed like a good idea at the time and he encouraged me, but as it got closer I started to worry. It wasn’t being away without him. Although I don’t like being apart from him, I am confident enough to know that I can fend quite well for myself, both emotionally and practically, although I happily admit that not having to has been something I have grown to enjoy. It was more the lack of personal space which was worrying me I think.

When Sir has been away we have always put tasks and rituals in place so that we can connect and feel close. This is not something that really worked well this time as being around others 24/7 has meant that there is very little space to do much more than keep in contact via text and sneak the odd FaceTime. Behaviours which would seem odd to a room mate, and therefore require some sort of explanation, have been avoided. There are very few people within my work environment who are aware of our dynamic and it is not something that I feel able to share with a wider audience.

I have said before that when we travel I feel that we exist in the little bubble which he creates for us. Being out side this bubble has opened my eyes again to the things from the real world that I have not really been contending with. Although I go to work and function in the real world every day, I realise that more and more the life we have chosen keeps our own little bubble around about us. I leave and I come back. More and more my life is about the other me, the one I feel I am and the one I want to be. I relate more readily to the online world I inhabit where I am free to express myself without negative judgement for the things I do. I surround myself with people who share those interests and it has somehow become the norm. This week has been a reminder that it is not the norm out there.

I have realised that in choosing my tribe I have not had to contend very much with the thoughts and opinions of the other tribes out there. So I have been reminded how many women view other women who allow men to do things for them and enjoy that, pathetic. I am more aware of a genuine lack of respect for others that comes from the desire to meet you own needs first. I have found myself useful as a buffer when there are roles which are not clearly defined or observed. I have tried to challenge some of these ideas but not in an overt way, merely by stating my own practice and how that makes me feel. Essentially I am more aware of how odd others would see me if they knew; submission is not cool!

I suppose I am always aware of how the physical side of what we do would be viewed by some. There is a fine line between what is considered exciting and adventurous and what is considered freaky and wrong in the mainstream world. Dark and deviant are things which I identify with in a positive way. I would almost own them with pride but the disgust and the judgement and the view that it is all abuse, I can never accept. It goes beyond this, however. I am reminded again that submissive women are seen as weak and inferior. They are seem by others as being lesser. It hits me how oddly our rituals are perceived and that what seems gentlemanly and nurturing to us appears antiquated and stuffy to others.

I have become more aware that while criticising the failing standard in young people in terms of politeness and etiquette, the same breath would question the way that we do things and see it as a sexist way to model behaviour to young people who are easily influenced. I seem alone in the opinion that respect must be a two way thing and that to put yourself first will mean that you become an island which some will fear to visit when the water looks rough.

The result of this is to create a need to be back in my own world. To be safe in what is known and predictable. To be where it makes sense to me and to those who I surround myself with. To be able to relax and not have to be on guard. To be back in my bubble. This is not to say that I have not enjoyed my time because I have. I have been with a nice group of people who are interesting to be around. I have enjoyed being in a different place as well as seeing different things. There is one colleague who is aware of my dynamic and that has been a huge help as it has allowed for pockets of feeling like I am still me.

All in all the week has been a positive experience. Sometimes I get so caught up in what works for me that I want to share what I see as being the beauty and the benefit. It has been good to remember that in many areas my revelation wouldn’t be received in the way I might hope. That it likely would alter the way people see and respond to me. Actually I am not much concerned about that but I would find the misunderstanding frustrating and it would probably cause me to withdraw a little in an environment where I can exist quite contentedly being my other self.