Wilma suggested a writing prompt. I was all in. Been wanting to have a topic to explore. Turned out, this one was not so easy.
What does it mean to submit? Submission is a matter of attitude, a matter of the spirit. What does it mean to obey? Obedience is a matter of the conscience, a matter of outward behavior. Submission is inward, whereas obedience is outward. – Witness Lee (The Difference Between Submission and Obedience)
First, Eric and I are of the same mind: you do you. We do not judge anyone on their tastes, preferences, or dynamic so long as they don't press their beliefs on us. And likewise, we do we, and we don't mind sharing our stories but not in such a manner to say we do it the right way. We do it our way. You do it yours. Then, we can all learn from each other.
What does it mean to submit, what does it mean to obey? Well, I really struggled with those two questions because I don't think I do either. I asked Eric. He said he needed a bit to mull it over and then after looking up the definitions, came back with, "You obey more than you submit."
Suddenly, I was offended.
"Really?! I think I'd submit way before I'd obey. I mean, you are not my boss nor do you own me. You don't tell me what to do and if you did, my doing so would be me submitting, not obeying."
Eric grinned, "Somebody just got all riled up! You obey me every time I tell you to get over my knee and if you keep that tone, young lady, I will gladly demonstrate."
I pondered it. Everything. Eric's "offer", my resistance to the word "obey", and my acknowledgement that yes, I do follow his direction when a spanking is involved.
"Words are important to you," Eric continued, "and based on your past, we are both very sensitive to you never feeling controlled by me or anyone else for that matter."
He's right. I want/like/need him in an HOH kind of role for us but I am super sensitive about my independence. I would say I obey my husband but I don't blindly obey him. And the fact is, Eric rarely if ever gives me direction. When he does, it is either in play or because I am needing him to take the reins for awhile.
Somehow I'm feeling as though our dynamic is a disappointment to most. We love spanking - for sexual play, for a desired reset, and once in a blue moon for discipline. Most of the time, a punishment spanking is contrived; built out of my curiosity on how a certain implement will feel, or a bar of soap will taste, or corner time will play out.
For me, submitting is handing over my decision making and responsibilities to the man I love and married. It's my way of letting his manhood shine; the protector and provider in our family. Obeying? If Eric asked me to do something I would out of love and the desire to make him happy. I'm not one to say no to him. Maybe submission is that letting go and leaning in that makes me feel like we are one and he happens to be at the front of our marriage, while obeying is more the outward action of saying, "yes, I will take care of what you want".
"Am I overthinking this?" I asked after days of haunting him with questions and conversation and pillow talk that seemed to never end.
"Whether you are or not," came his reply, "I'm going to keep doing what I'm doing. So there!"
And SMACK, came the sweet stinging palm of his hand across my behind.
PS- I still don't know what I think about the whole obey vs. submit question. WILMA!!!!!! Start me off with an easier topic. ;) You've turned my brain to mush.