Complicated is a word that I have used to describe the changes that we have dealt with over the past while. I try not to speak in negative terms because that feels unfair when we are so lucky and we have so much. What was difficult was dealing with the complications that life threw at us, and the way that one event sort of unravelled to take over and affect the way that everything else was. I think in normal circumstance I would have been through a myriad of emotions with regard to this. Instead, what happened was that we dealt with the change and the complications and we focussed on the good and not the bad. We focussed on what we had and not on what we had lost and, in essence, this unpicked things and simplified them, at least to a certain extent.
Three years ago HL lost his job, and that is what complicated things for us. It complicated things financially of course, but it was also much more than that. It complicated the way we had set our life up and it complicated the way that our dynamic worked. It affected the day to day running of things as well as elements which were more fundamental. It didn’t have to do that of course, but somehow it did. The situation was complicated further by the fact that I understood why HL felt like he did and I empathised with him about what he had lost and how he felt about it, but I saw a way forward and was frustrated that he wasn’t taking it in the way I would have liked. I saw him slipping away slowly, from me, from himself, from the person he was, and that has been difficult to manage.
It has made things difficult within our dynamic in a number of ways and we haven’t been able to grow at the same speed that we would have liked. At times it has felt that we weren’t moving forwards and at others it has felt that we have taken big steps back. I have questioned, not just whether we are doing this D/s thing anymore, but whether it is possible for us and whether I even want to. Now these are fleeting thoughts but they are there, and like everything else, they have complicated the way that we work together. They have made it tricky and they have made things feel like they don’t quite fit.
Ironically, although the dynamic has taken a hit, it is also the thing that has saved us. Where I have noticed the changes and felt our connection ebb a bit, it is the D/s and our commitment to keep going with it that has kept us talking. It has meant that we have been more understanding of one another and that we have shared our feelings, even when that was not an easy thing to do. It has meant that the world sees us as thankful for what we have, and when people see that, they treat you in a way which means that you question less. You look back less, and you look forward together more. You focus on the things that you have, the simple things, the continuing depth of the love you have for one another.
So in some senses it is change that is complicated, because underneath, things don’t have to be. The complication sits on the surface and as long as you don’t let it penetrate you deeply enough that it affects the foundations of your relationship, I reckon you can keep things simple and keep them about what matters to you. Things can be complicated, situations and events and the way that we feel about them can be complicated, but as people, we don’t have to let that complicate us. We can try to take our time, to focus on the small things and try to break it all down and unpick it piece by piece; we can try not to feel overwhelmed.
So much of how things have been for us has felt difficult and complicated. That has felt overwhelming but because if that, it has been easier to try to push it away. I have tried not to get bogged down in thinking about the whys or the hows or the whens of the things which I have no immediate control over, and to concentrate on the straightforward and simple things which I can be sure of. It has led to some unusual changes. Less looking out and more looking in, kind of like a focus on the colour and the texture and the shapes of a picture and enjoying them for what they are, without rushing to see the whole canvas. It has felt like a new, and slightly unwelcome approach for me.
It felt like we slowed right down; sometimes to the point we didn’t seem to be moving, but it felt safe and manageable. And now, as things are changing again, I can feel myself start to change and can feel things returning which I had not even realised I had put aside. I feel things starting to gather pace and speed again, and pick back up. It feels as though less of our resources and emotional energy need to go on trying to survive and trying to get through, which leaves more to focus on other things again. I feel little parts of me starting to wake up again and look around me with fresh eyes, almost like I am ready to see and feel a bit more.
I suppose what I think I am saying is that as things became too complicated for me to be able to unpick, I sort of simplified them by thinking less and feeling less. I stopped trying to change the things which I felt I couldn’t and focussed on the things that felt within my grasp. I suppose I adapted to fit my circumstances and I cut back where it was needed. Now that the pressure is off a little, I feel that I can step back up a bit. I can let go a little bit more and be a little bit more adventurous again. I guess a lot of it is to do with risk. I felt that risk was forced upon us in a way that we didn’t want and that pushed me to want to play safe in other ways. Now that is slowly changing, I feel more inclined to take those risks again.
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