So often one wonders how they wind up who they are. At least I do. I will be in a moment, living, thinking, doing whatever it is I’m doing and then part of my consciousness will pull back for a moment and say to the rest of my consciousness “Whoah. Really? Is this really happening? ‘Cause…well…you know. That’s pretty….wow. Just, yeah.”
I am just back from a multi-stage trip that took me to Chicago for SINSations In Leather and then to New York for …well, for so much more than I have even been able to process. For those who are unaware, life’s been hurtling along in many ways, some good, some a bit scary…but good. Â I’m no longer an employee of Penthouse Inc by way of serving as Sr. Editor for Bondage and ALT. Thank Ganesha I’m out of debt, in a rent-controlled flat, and able to collect Unemployment Insurance. I hardly had time to soak up this life shift but I was off to Chicago and home to New York.
It is startling to return to one’s hometown a very different person yet essentially unchanged. I’ve always been weird, and sexually open and off the beaten path. Now I’m on the path to be beaten, and instead of wondering if I’m alone, I’m talking about my sex life in a bar in front of a packed wall to wall crowd, who seem happy to listen to me talk about kissing a stranger’s boots. And I was so honored to have strangers and friends alike be so receptive. How amazing to have a friend of 25+ years as well as a total stranger share with me how much they enjoyed my storytelling. What a rush.
instead of wondering if I’m alone in my desires, I’m in a room in a dance studio discussing some of the darkest forms of psychological play that there is.
Instead of feeling as though I am “less than” because I’m submissive, I’m exhorting a roomful of people to be proud of being fierce and submissive. And in turn, I have had a surprising number of people tell me that my sharing has changed their lives for the better, helped to shift their self-esteem, given them hope, made them think. This makes it worth it, to me,to push myself to keep going.
Instead of being tooÂ embarrassedÂ to even ask if someone might want toÂ collaborateÂ with me, I manage to work up the nerve to put it out there that I’d like to work with people I admire and then…miracle ofÂ miracles…it manifests. Â I can question the sanity of walking into a stranger’s house and within several hours finding yourself masturbating on their couch as they take photo after photo of your sweaty writhings as you come for the simple reason that they asked you to do that. But it rocks.
Rather than hiding my body and my sexuality because it doesn’t fit the standards of beauty and the “norm,” I’m in a posh boutique hotel pressed between two dominant Â men while I have one of the fiercest orgasms in recent memory and the whole episode is captured on film by a wonderful friend and photographer for posterity.
Rather than feeling cast up and alone, I’m chatting with amazing wonderful sex-positive friends and comrades on a lovely sunny Sunday afternoon.
It is easy to wonder how one has gotten to the point where someone whispering horrid racial epithets in your ear before they push your face into a plate full of half-eaten Chinese food in front of a table full of people who are amused by the spectacle becameÂ somethingÂ that just happens on a Thursday night.
I didn’t get much sleep in the past few weeks. What I did get was an overwhelming tidal wave of love, and support, and positive energy, and validation. Â Whether it is from the warm hug of someone who eagerly shares their own story with me, or in the warmth andÂ acceptanceÂ of my friend, the soon-to-be Rabbi, who earnestly explains to me that it is unlikely that my own spiritual experiences make me insane or unstable.
As I was standing on Saint Mark’s Place one night at 2:45 AM soaking in the cool night air and the frantic energy, and on my way for a slice, Â I saw how much has changed, and how much my deepest heart, the part of me that is open to experience and joyous, hasn’t changed.