Eric was home two days and never mentioned my night in the park or his text. I wasn't going to bring it up! Instead, we languished in each others arms for hours, lips locked and bodies intertwined. Distance is a killer when we are apart but it is heavenly when we come back together.
A text received at work.
"Straight home Amy. Boots on and in the corner."
It was very hard to concentrate the rest of the afternoon. Anticipation is a big part of this relationship and I think, were the situation different, Eric and I would deal with things in a more immediate fashion (good, bad or otherwise) but with him on the road a lot, three kids at home and me in school it's hard to find time. Three days after an offense, the butterflies, a cross between excitement and nausea, took flight and I was tempted to call and ask, "Why? What are you going to do? Shouldn't we talk about this?!"
If you look back, I seem to be getting the same advice from everyone. "Let go. Let him lead." It's what I want. It's what I signed up for. It seems very simple but the internal battles rage on and on. I cried out for attention (bratted up...lol) but got none. Now, it was coming but I felt good and like it wasn't necessary. A deep breath in and I refrained from getting involved. Instead, I promised myself to let him take us through.
At 5:20 pm, I stood, nose to the corner, wearing my cowgirl boots and a silk tasseled shirt without any bottoms. Initially, my mind was racing about a million things Eric could do, might do, would do; but after awhile, I settled into a more calm state (after running the list of my to-do's with my first kid leaving home next week and the rest of us back in school within days - got a B in that math class btw!!) and began thinking about why we started down this ttwd/dd road to begin with. Single for ten years, I've had the weight of the world on my shoulders and I'm good with it but when Eric came into our lives I was ready to let someone in. Dating was fun but when we fell seriously in love, it became a rocky balance of what used to be and what could be. Middle ground is an illusive balance we seem to be in constant search of. This lifestyle was something we thought would help, but it's not easy letting go and trusting yourself in the hands of another.
The garage door sounded and my stomach jolted. Eric's footsteps on the stairs about had my knees knocking and I pressed into the wall in search of additional support.
"Don't turn around," he stated, his voice steady and stern. I swallowed and bit my lip. I think he sat opposite of me but my eyes were squeezed shut so I wouldn't even venture a look.
"Amy, I've had enough of your risky behavior." His lecture was one I had needed for an eternity. "You are not a child but you go back and forth between being the most independent woman in the world to acting like a teenager without a bit of common sense in you. You can't be in a park, by yourself, in the middle of the night! How would the kids or I have felt if we'd gotten a call from the police that something had happened to you? What would any of us do without you in our lives?!"
The last two sentences caught me by surprise. I hadn't ever considered, it never ever crosses my mind that something could ever happen to me. I take care of the four of the them and then just do my thing; whether it be a class or a trip to the park. Suddenly, this round of consequences felt less like a fun adventure and more like a shot of reality. This wasn't about a sweet emotional reset or a sexual spanking. Eric had been genuinely worried and my face went hot with that blaze of realization.
I jumped. In my flush of understanding, my mind drifted from his words and I guess I missed the first suggestion that I turn and face my consequences. Eric was seated on a black straight backed chair in the center of our room and his lips were closed tightly in a straight line. I stumbled over to him and started to apologize, shocked that a sea of tears suddenly welled up in my eyes and a bolt of remorse shot through me.
"Uh uh," he said shaking his head. "You don't get to talk yet."
Eric took my hand and laid me across his lap. I'd never been in this position before and a droplet of water ran down my nose and fell to the carpet. I was already shaking.
"If you insist on acting like a child, I'm going to have to treat you as one." Eric's voice was stern and unwavering and his hand slapped down on my cheek as he spoke. The more he spoke about how much he loved me and how much he worried when I ran off without thinking about how dangerous a situation might be, the harder he slapped and the sadder I got. By the time my behind was surely red, I was truly crying and just wanting to be held when out of the blue, a shot of a thousand bees stung my left side. I jumped up and tried to scramble to my feet but Eric pulled me right back over his knee, locked my legs in place and pulled my belly in tight to his lap.
"Oh no you don't!" he stated and the bees rang down again and again on my backside. I couldn't imagine what he was using but every swat made me cry out and the pain reignited with each blow, building on and combining with the prior smack. My head spun. My body broke out in waves of heat and Eric did not stop even to take a breath until he felt he had made his point. I'd never felt anything like it. My ass was on fire, my face was tear stained and every single part of me that ever felt unvalued just washed away. It couldn't have been more than five minutes and I was sobbing in his arms; wrapped in an embrace that could have carried me to the moon.
I feel different now. I feel solid. Safe. Secure. And happy. More than anything, I just feel happy.
(Oh... and the bees? Actually, a flat wooden spoon with holes in it. Damn that thing hurts!!)