Yesterday was one of those magical days. Those days when the total impact for the day transcends the sum of its parts. I’m still reeling a bit with an emotional hangover that the coffee doesn’t seem to be cutting. It’s 5 now and I’m on the second pot. So hang on, I don’t know where this is gonna go, but I gotta let it out. (That’s what he said)
We got asked to do this thing. We were very honored to be asked to serve on a panel for the Day of Leather in Indianapolis yesterday. I agreed because I thought it would be bad form to turn it down, good for my slave to put herself out there a little, and I am a talkative, oversharing, attention whore. We had no idea why anyone would want us for such a thing, and I assumed everyone good was either already busy with the event or had family plans for the holiday and had declined. We were also under the impression that it would be filled mostly with those “leather people” that we don’t really know and could make some new friends possibly. I love to work a room, it energizes me, and I always make a connection with someone. We dress up and go. I was careful not to wear the leather I wear often because I didn’t want to be taken as a representative of that community, that would be a privilege I have yet to earn. But hey, I’ll be glad to represent us “regular kinksters”, right?
We make the 2 hour drive, and on the way review the questions that had been given us as discussion starters (btw kudos to MasterLT_ for running the panel like a pro). It sparked some great discussion between slave and I, and we even shared some fond memories of our beginnings. The weather wasn’t awful, traffic was non-existent and we arrive in a relaxed M/s headspace, ready for whatever (or so I thought).
Walking in, we are greeted at the door by someone I admire, and was one of the first people that ever welcomed me to the kommunity (and also a fellow panelist). Here he was welcoming us once again. Registration is manned by another good friend. I look up to see a table full of people we both know well, all smiling and waving at us. From across the room another longtime friend that introduced me to my most well-known fetish, calls our name and invites us to join her at the empty tables. One by one the seats fill up around us(the contest let out) with people we call friends. Some close, some that we wish we were closer to, but every one of them were people we know, trust and enjoy the company of. Wait, one person I didn’t know, but even he was kind enough to show me his fine specimen of a penis (call me!). As I looked around I began to realize I knew more people than I didn’t, and actually liked all of them. I know, right? It was like being in a lunchroom where ALL the tables are the cool kid’s table, and I got invited to sit with them! (Or maybe all the tables were the freak kid’s tables and I… nevermind.)
So then we go upstairs for the first panel, which was very informative and a lot to digest. A great job was done by all, you all represented your clubs well. We get seated for our panel and it begins smoothly enough. It gets to trucking along, and I start to share more of our story with the crowd. (How is it that I knew everyone downstairs and hardly ANY of you people upstairs?) And then something weird happens.
It starts with this lump in my throat. What’s this wet stuff on my face? Why is my nose running and it’s hard to talk? Its NEVER hard for me to talk. I am overcome with emotion. I’m not supposed to be crying, I’m supposed to be charming! This isn’t very Masterly! I come to this big bad Leather event and start balling like a baby in front of a whole room full of(mostly) strangers. What the fuck?
You see, as I began to tell our story, which I thought was rather mundane and not very exciting to anyone, I began to really hear it. I heard it like it was someone else hearing it for the first time.
And it was beautiful.
How could our story be so romantic? How was it that our struggle was so beautiful? Since when did we become successful at this Master/slave thingy we do?
Perfect? Oh hell no.
Great at it? Sometimes.
Good at it? Yeah we can be.
Making it work? Like a motherfucking boss.
That’s right, I said it. Like a boss.
We rock this shit and we rock it 24/7.
We don’t rock it like Led Zeppelin world tour rock it, but we do rock it like your favorite bar band in your favorite bar on a Friday night with $3 pitchers.
SO there I am blubbering in front of a bunch of people I want to impress and I don’t know why, and then it all hit me. We are succeeding. Success isn’t the endgame, it’s the process. You don’t work and struggle to succeed and then stop, success is something you maintain. Success is a fluid state. It ebbs and flows, it hopefully improves even. Success can even be something you only have barely ahold of by your fingernails, but you have it. A small business can be successful, and then grow into a large company and be successful still. In fact, if it was growing, it was successful ALL ALONG.
All of this hits me like Jake Blues sitting in church seeing the light. If you were there, this is the point when I said, “I am not crying because it is sad, I’m crying because it is so beautiful.” The Panel continues and the ice has been broken. Everyone is sharing, more tears are flowing. We hear beautiful and moving stories come from each of the panelists. The audience is getting more involved, I don’t think there was a dry eye in the house. They are rocking this shit too. Loud and proud. Every one of them their own success story.
Bear with me, I’m trying to tie all this together.
A month ago, for some reason I wrote this on a scrap of paper and it has stayed on my desk ever since:
“You should sit down and form an idea of what you consider being successful looks like. Get a firm picture of it in your mind, because otherwise you may not recognize it when you see it.”
I told myself then that there was a writing in that, and I guess this is it. I know this may seem a bit like I am trying to toot my own horn and brag about how we are “rocking this shit”, but that’s not it. I am trying to tell you that YOU are rocking this shit.
I looked around that room yesterday where I seemed to know everyone, and I see that they are all rocking out with their cocks out. Like a motherfucking boss. Like capris and pumps you are all rocking it. I know you aren’t perfect. I know you struggle. I know you get into fuck-you-arguments with people you never want to hurt and feel like it is the end of the whole world, but I also know you get right back up and start all over again.
If you are out there giving it a shot, maybe in a relationship maybe not, maybe seeking a/another partner, maybe not? Then you are open for business and a success dammit. Your story is worth telling too. Chances are, you are a success and don’t even know it. Perfection and success are not synonymous. Perfection is something you strive for but are never to compare yourself to. Success is a state of mind.
So look at your story. Have you been beaten only to rise? Have you struggled and overcome? Are you learning? Perhaps you are successful, yes? I realized yesterday that we are. We are not perfect. We are not without struggles. We are not floundering but growing, growing both personally and in our dynamic as partners. We have healthy relationships with others, we have friends. We have a kommunity that we embrace and that embraces us. What hasn’t killed us has made us work harder, we were already strong. Like a motherfucking boss.
Take inventory and balance the books that really matter. I bet you are successful too!
Thank you to everyone who was there. Thank you Indiana Leather Club for having us, and for the unexpected group therapy session. Our deep respect to the others on the panel for showing us what their beautiful successes look like.