Sunday, December 25, 2016

True Love is the Ultimate Submission

Today - Christmas Day - a special love story - sad and painful to read. It is about how my mother passed away and how my dad stood by her, no matter what.

The old man tied the balloons to their house and let go. Pretty good as your back-up Personal Legend, don’t you think so? Just before lift-off the movie Up has this one shot. A pivotal one, where a sign on the wall says: "Death ends a life, not a relationship" Deep down, we all know that's true.  Yet it takes an animated motion picture to make us realize that simple truth.

When it comes to being old school, my dad is the real deal. He'd walk straight into hell - no hesitation - if he has too. In fact, I think, he's been there already. Not that I'll ever know. Old school and so on, you know.  Only love can give you that strength, especially under those circumstances.


Just the Two of Us

Any relationship worth its name, has two people in it. Partners in crime for better or worse. Equals, whatever may come. Their names are not mistress and slave. They are man and woman. Too often femdom-based relationships ignore the fact it takes two people - in loving harmony - to make magic work. Love, not lust (or femdom) is this planet's only superpower that can achieve the impossible. Trust me, once you've finished reading, you'll have a much deeper understanding of the word superpower (or impossible). Love on the other hand is still same old, same old. That is the real lesson here. But you already know.

If you are a sucker for servitude and devotion, snap out of it. No way will obedience ever get you to the next level. Love? Perhaps, for the lucky few. But only if you are truly blessed. It's all about the one. Incidentally the same phrase which puts me of when it comes to femdom. Da one? Flip a coin and discover if it means her or him. Me, myself and I is usuallly all that matters. It makes little sense. Coming from an average guy, who is all in favour of a quick fix, that tells you something.

Perhaps the answer lies in the symbol of Yin and Yang. For no apparent reason, one day someone decided the triskalon - some Celtic symbol - represents BDSM. Why? I don't know. Yin and Yang is so much better. The pair symbolizes complementary opposites - in perfect harmony. What is - balanced and in perfect harmony - in a world that cannot be. Togetherness as in a perfect fit that defies the dark logic of the universe. A seamless symphony within a never-ending circle, combining female and male, darkness and light, good and bad. At each single occurence it stirrs up memories of happiness, heaven, harmony and hope, or better perhaps balance and harmony.

It's not the fact that I don't like pain, or suck at being submissve. Neither is an essential ingredient in what makes me the worst slave of all times. Good thing then I take my devotion and servitude seriously, which means we have left the realm of femdom and entered into the world of love.

It doesn't matter what - if any - principles your relationship is based on. In the end it is all about two people who want - need and have to be together. If you love someone, what makes them happy makes you happy. Up to a point that is. Where the superior force of love truly shines, is the very moment when you are faced with a choice between your happiness and hers. There's a reason they call it a hard choice. Trust me, it sucks.


Final Years

Life was never kind to my mother. Her last few years were a painful testament to the immense burden she had been living under for too long. Somehow she turned into that crazy old cat lady. A good thing, it made her smile every now and then in those final - harsh and demanding - years.

Some time before she suffered a stroke. Smoking, obesity or just plain old bad luck does that to you. It left her disabled. It also drained her last resources. Sometimes life asks too much of us. Mum couldn’t go on anymore.

No matter how much you love someone, sometimes there comes a point when you can no longer be together. It has nothing to do with falling out of love. My parents divorced at an old age. No longer under the same roof - but forever loving each other - is one of life's cruellest tricks.

Not that it stopped my dad from loving my mother - and vice versa. Every single day he cared for her, even when she was no longer able to comprehend what the word love meant. I can only hope she understood it at a more basic level. Dad is old school. He soldiered on, not a single word. He tried and then some more. In the end life takes its toll on all of us.

Death ends a life, not a relationship.


Kaput

This is the part where it gets really bad. One Friday night, dad's phone stopped working, so I drove up to his place. He asked me if I was gonna stop by Mum. Not tonight I said, recalling a difficult phone call earlier that day. It is the single biggest mistake of my life.

Little did I know my mother was desperate and couldn't go on anymore. That very day she had decided to stop eating and drinking. Exactly one week later my dad told me just that. Rushed over to see Mom, she looked so fragile - tremendous pain on her face.

My mind went back to about one year before. Living alone in the big house where I grew up, she suffered a stroke. It happened in the bathroom. She lay there completely helpless for almost 24 hours untill a neighbour, the fireman, climbed in through the window.

The whole experience had left Mom with just one thing on her mind: leave. Some months later, she moved to an apartment. The place was crap. Her new home didn't bring her any joy, quite the contrary.


Dance With The Devil

One Sunday morning, Dad called me. "Mum is being transported to the hospital." It is a little under an hour from my place to the town I grew up. Still I managed to arrived at the hospital before the ambulance did. Once I got there, the doctors had given up all hope. She wouldn't make it through the night. Mum, in her softest voice ever, asked me to call her big sister. Auntie raised Mom in those harsh post-war years. I did. Difficult call. I promised to pick up my aunt the next morning, in order to say goodbye.

Everybody knows one day, that day is gonna come. The best you can hope for is gentle. As her son, I know my Mum. No doubt in my mind, Mom would hold on to the next day. As I drove home that night, I was sad. Gloomy thoughts and happy memories filled my mind.

Incidentally it was also "our" anniversary. You know. She and I broke up some time before. I just missed her. I needed her. Badly. You cannot have it all. As I came home that night - knowing my mother would pass away the very next day - I switched on the telly.

The two of us dabbled a bit in kink. Still, it has nothing to do with why we fell in love. Quite the contrary, at regular intervals I've cursed the whole femdom thing for all of its complications, dishonesty and distractions.

Believe it or not, that very night Dutch television had a re-run of "Scandal in Belgravia", the Sherlock episode with Irene Adler. It proved too much. I missed her. True to form, a little after midnight - technically it was t+1 - I texted her.

"Hey there. U know, today is our non-anniversary?" We talked for a while and - well, basically she saved my life that night. Now you know Angel. It made the inevitable a little less hard. Once again the power of love rules supreme. The next morning around half seven my phone rang. I knew it wasn't Mum. She'd hang in until she'd seen her big sis. A text from my girl. One of those moments you forever are grateful for.

Later that day, as I got in my car for the long way round Holland, I glanced at the seat next to me, cherishing the illusion that any moment, she'd somehow miraculously would fall from the sky and be by my side. She didn't. How could she? Little did she know what was going on or that she saved my life the night before. Let alone she is the only one in the world who could ease my pain. I also very well knew that if I told her, she'd be on the very first plane. I didn't wanna do that to her. Not fair.

After about an hour's drive, I got a call. "Things are looking up." When we arrived at the hospital, the opposite turned out to be true. Mum couldn't go on anymore. So exhausted. Desperatly tired. Once I understood, I told Dad. He - lovingly - tried to persuade Mum to keep on fighting. Love - the good, beautiful and benign kind - never, ever makes a fool of anyone. At times it casts a particular light on events, as they unfold, it temporarily blurs our vision. To love someone means you want what's best for them. Usually that means life. Sometimes the best is the very opposite of life. I remember looking at my Dad, grappling with the very concept. His love for my mother is stronger than almost anything you will ever come across in this life. As he slowly began to understand this is what she - the woman he forever loves - truly wants, he adjusted accordingly.

It is that unique connection, very few people will ever be allowed to share. I don't know what he said to her, but I saw it on her face. An incomprehensible difficult mixture of sad and happy. Good, bad, beautiful. The look on his face expressed that very same emotion. Because, together, despite, but forever connected - unbreakable - the two of them understood. For a brief moment, even me, their son, felt like an outsider.

Have you ever been so afraid to wake the one you love, you rather not move or go to the bathroom at night? That is how much my Dad loves my Mother. I saw it, right there and then. It is that very moment when all you worry how about is how even the most tender of gestures, can come across as uncaring.



Inevitable

I've been managing my mother's affairs for many years. After I left the hospital, I went to her place and picked up some things. As I opened the door, there were all these little notes. It made me wonder. The telly had one, so did the fridge. Most items in her house had a note with a name on it. I was exhausted. My mind registered it. Still, I didn't understand what it truly meant.

Conflicted between my own happiness that Mum hadn't passed away and her deep, heartfelt pain, she couldn't go on any longer, I drove home. At night, in my car, it hit me, all alone once again. My memories of that night are blurry to non-existent. I honestly can't remember, but I think the two of us texted a bit back and forth. One thing stood out though. Did she really believe, I forgot the dress she wore that first night? Part-time idiot only, hello!

Despite the fact that Mom was released from hospital soon after, I knew things were no longer the same. To be honest, only later I realized that change happened long before.

Like I said, Dad is old school. He'd walk straight into hell, no flinching and zero hesitation if he has to. He is one of many men. It's just what he does. It is also who he is. It says I love you. I'll be around. I'll care for you. Not that it makes it any easier to open her frontdoor every single day, not knowing what to expect, but fearing the worst. You wish and pray the woman you love isn't laying helpless on the floor - suffering yet another debilitating stroke. Yet it happened. Several times, don't know how often, I stopped trying to put the pieces together. Dad is old school - hardcore.

One night, Dad called me. Mum had slipped and was unable to get up. It happened several hours before he came to see her. Only later I realized the true extent of his hardship and what it meant to unlock her frontdoor every single morning. Mum loves Dad, deeply, intensely and forever. Even though she loves him above and beyond, later in life she began pushing him away, whenever she could. A life of hardship and cruelty led to a gap in her mental make-up. She didn't want to, yet had little control over her actions. To my Dad it must have felt as if she was testing him - after all this time. Life can be cruel.

One more time: Dad (with a capital D) is old-school. As in really, really old school. I learned from the best. Lucky me! We talked about what happened, but sometimes there are no answers. After all, life can be the biggest sadist of all. Dad and I worried about Mum's next - unavoidable - accident. Age had taken its toll and - or so I think - she believed the best way to protect Dad pretended everything was fine.

Love is beautiful, but occasionally too much of it lands you in a terrible mess. Especially when you hurt - unintentionally - the ones you love, by shielding them from the truth. In the end you don't protect them. What you do is robbing them from one of life's most important moments. To be side by side with the one you love in their darkest hours. Not that you realize it in your desperation.


"The strongest love is the love that can demonstrate its fragility."
- Paulo Coelho, 11 minutes


Dad has that stiff upper lip. The Brits forever envy him. Dad simply continued to do what he does best - as always in stealth mode. Too many dommes want to live the glorious life for no reason at all. Why anyone would want to put them on a pedestal remains a mystery to me and most of my fellow slaves. Step down and be the woman you are. Just that will lift you higher than any domme-delusion ever can.

Meanwhile Dad remained tight lipped, even on the very night I fixed his phone. If you are one of those fellows who truly believes in obedience, don't. All people are created equal. Life inevitably points us towards those who are most deserving of our attention, devotion, love and if you will: servitude.

Falling in love is crazy stuff. Just think back. I'm one of those arrogant lads who thinks he can get by without saying I love you. Not exactly true. If I tell someone I love them, it's for real. Despite what the future has in store, it generally means forever (and a day).

If you care about the people around you, why tell them, you love them, if you are not serious about the whole thing? We've all been at the other end. Learn from it and tread carefully.


Point of No Return

Exactly one week after I fixed his phone, Dad told me Mum had stopped eating and drinking. By then the point of no return had long been passed. As I took in the news, we went to see Mom. She was asleep and looked so fragile. What can you say? As I drove home I turned off the music, thinking about the inevitable. I was at peace with the fact that the time had come, but struggled with the how. Knowing Mum could pass at any moment I felt sad. Once again I dreamt of my girl falling out of the sky straight into the seat next to mine. I desperately wanted her to be by my side. How could she?

All I wanted to do is park the car and call her. Just to hear her voice. That wouldn't be fair. She was no longer my girl. Why burden someone you love, but cannot be with, with your troubles?

I drove to my Mom's house a few more times. Dad was always there. Every single trip I glanced at the passenger seat next to me. I was sure she would drop out of the sky any moment now. Just the two of us in the car. No need for words. No need to explain. Just by my side.

One night, as I drove to my Mum's apartment, my brother called. He was by her side as it happened. Sad as I was, I felt happy for Mom, her ordeal was finally over. She had suffered for too long. Afterwards, the loneliness was overwhelming. Despite that, the seat next to me remained empty. Obviously. For the best perhaps.

“Now that she had nothing to lose, she was free.”
- Paulo Coelho, 11 minutes


When I arrived, I looked at Mum and realized she found her peace. I switched into efficiency mode and began organizing things. It was the last thing I could do for her. When I drove home that night, there were no stars or moon. The darkness in my car felt more empty than before. If ever there was a time I missed my girl, this was the night. Even worse, I  realised whatever happened next, I would never be able to introduce her to my mother. It only added to my gloom.

"Keeping passion at bay or surrendering blindly to it -
which of these two attitudes is the least destructive?"

- Paulo Coelho, 11 minutes


A few days later, as I delivered Mom's eulogy, I looked at the people in front of me. A quick glance at Dad, grieving. My eyes shifted towards the empty spot next to him - my seat obviously. Then something surreal happened. It felt as if I was being split in half. Part of me continued to address the audience. The other half knew beyond a doubt my girl would fall out of the sky like an Angel onto that empty chair I was looking at. Of course it didn't happen. The Grinch stole so much more than just a couple of Christmases. What it does however, is to remind you of the power of love. Mind altering. And remember: compared to people such as my parents I'm still a beginner.

I vividly remember talking to the hostess after the service. The funeral home was about to throw out the leftover sandwiches. The local charity wouldn't take them unless each and every one of them was wrapped individually. Absurd.

"No one loses anyone, because no one owns anyone."
- Paulo Coelho, 11 minutes


The following months I spent more time than usual with my dad. Tell that to him. Over time Dad has gotten better at hiding his grief, but it will always be there. Perhaps it is true that everything in life - and especially love - has its price.


“Really important meetings are planned by the souls
long before the bodies see each other."
Paulo Coelho - 11 minutes

At times the price for love can be overwhelming. To let go of the one you love. Especially when it is irreversible. That doesn't mean you don't love her, quite the opposite. It only shows how deep your love truly runs. Sometimes to love somebody means to let them go.

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Merry Christmas to you and your loved ones. As Mum used to say: "Love each other. It's all that matters."

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