Sadly, this post has very little to do with me being a submissive and everything to do with me being in my 20’s. These are not the fun sort of growing pains.
I knew they were coming. I think it was a combination of things that set it off today. One was the warm weather. It feels like home this time of year (well, normally. Jersey’s had really wacky weather this year. They got slammed during the winter). Another factor was lack of decompression space. I work an 8-5 job, a job that I adore, but a job that involves being around people all day. After work me getting the chance to have some time and space to myself and breathe is.. kind of important. I went from work to a sardine-packed hot bus, to an apartment crammed with roommates and ALL of my roommate’s painting supplies and giant canvases (she’s an amazing painter..but I no longer have a floor. Or hallway). Near my breaking point and recognizing that, I ran outside. We are blessed to have a back deck, and it was such a beautiful night I thought I would sit and read.
And then the neighbors came outside and started barbequing.
They were quiet, unobtrusive, and whatever they were making smelled fantastic. It wasn’t that. It was the combination that formed the image in my mind of home during the summer. Normally this time of year my dad has just opened the pool. The water is ice cold, but my sister and I still go in and freeze our asses off. My mother comments on us being insane while my dad stands in front of the grill shirtless, with his swim trunks and ugly-ass Crocks on grilling whatever it is we will eat for dinner. It’s usually involving something fresh from our garden..
That did it. I started bawling. Not hysterically…just enough that my body shook. I gave myself a minute or two of just crying..and then took stock of myself, and emotionally dissected myself. Why was I crying? Was it really that bad, or was I worked up? WHY was I worked up? I texted Sir a bit, filled him in on why I was worked up, and told him I was fine, because I knew I would be. I just had to figure out why I got so damn worked up.
I grabbed my journal, the one Sir has me write in daily, and filled up some of the last pages inside of it. I come from an incredibly close family, so missing them is natural, but I also chose to move 3000 miles away. I chose to stay out here, because feeling like my whole self and discovering a side of myself I had often shoved away was more important than running home for familiar comfort. I want my life to progress, and there is very little for me where I am from as far as opportunities go, and friendships.
San Francisco is a clean slate for me, in certain ways, even though I’ve been here for a year. I’m diving into a new community, and for the first time trying to make friends that I don’t just go to school with or live with. You know, actual big girl friends. I have a real job. That means not being able to go home for a month and do all those “traditional” things I’ve done year after year, because I can’t miss work, but it means I can make new traditions. Okay, so I can’t run to the Jersey shore every weekend this summer, but there are beaches here, and they’re quite beautiful. I can’t go swimming in the pool ever night. But I will have at least a week home where I can swim all I want and get that fix. I miss my parents. Like I didn’t see that coming. That’s what webcams and cell phones are for, and it makes when I see them something special and cherished instead of something expected.
The hardest thing for me being here, I think, the thing that really pushed me over the edge was the lack of anywhere to just… decompress. I have no space that is mine. I don’t have a door to shut. Even the bed I sleep on (futon…) technically isn’t mine. I miss having a safe space to hide. I like the local kink coffee shop a lot. I can go hide there relatively frequently and curl up with a book. I get left in peace and get affordable food on top of it. I went there after I calmed down today and it was…packed. To the gills. No, no no no no no. No. TOO. MANY. PEOPLE.
I decided on my way back to my shoebox of an apartment that if I couldn’t have a stationary safe place to hide in I would do at least one thing a week just for me, and would start Googling my creature comforts that I had left behind in Boston, where I got my undergraduate degree and lived for four years. I used to love to swing dance, for example. A group from school ran West Coast Swing socials in a local restaurant once a week and I loved it. I was a damn good follower by the time I graduated with my undergad. Turns out, there are quite a few swing groups here…not surprised. That’s more people to meet and socialize with..and you know, dance and drink with (tequila before a whip makes the move fuuun…hehe). I used to belly dance as well… and found a studio near my apartment that has affordable classes.
Big girl shit sucks sometimes… It hurts, but everyone goes through it. It’s how you cope with it that matters, and how you grow from the pain caused by it that matters. I don’t want to go back to Jersey. I want an actual life here. I don’t want to have to run to my parents for support. I want to build a support network here, and also be able to stand on my own two feet and support myself. It may be hard at times, but I’m making it, both in and out of the BDSM world. Yes, I know I can turn to my Dom if I need him. I can tell him anything, but he can’t make this stuff better. Only I can. He did the 20something shit already. It’s my turn to trudge through it, and improve myself through it. Even if I shed a few tears along the way.
On a side note, I kind of wish personal growth led to actual growth… I feel like I would finally be over 5 feet tall if that was the case! Wishful thinking.
I also made one last important promise to myself, after a shit tone of Googling of activities. My next apartment will have a room for just me, and a door that I can shut. I don’t care if it’s in Oakland, as long as it has space in it that is MINE.
Yours always learning,