Friday, April 7, 2017

Heading Down the Wrong Road

Good golly, I surely do love vacations.  The days prior to a trip are chock full of endless lists of tasks and happy anticipation.  I so enjoy this part of preparing for a holiday.  Please see below for a whole post about me and pre-trip excitement titled,

                     "Tell Me About the Rabbits, George."

So much to do!  Both of us stay busy.
  • Arrange for house sitter and dog care.
  • Stock fridge and make up guest bed.
  • Check on any car service needed.  Gas up.
  • Confirm reservations - hotels, airlines.
  • Catch up on laundry - pull out suitcases.
  • Pack clothing appropriate to trip activities.
  • Organize medications and toiletry items.
  • Assemble travel documents and maps.
  • Snacks for car and airline trips.
  • Determine amount of cash needed.  Bank errand.
  • Get caught up at work.

Now, I will admit that I sometimes go too far.  Sam loves for me to be excited, just not possessed.  He also heartily endorses a "preemptive strike" to remind me who is really in charge on a trip.  You see, Sam would never spank me in a hotel, although we have played rough with the prior understanding that I keep any protestations buried in a pillow.  But he likes to remind me about bossiness, telling him how to drive, losing my temper.  You know - all the regular stuff.  This timely reminder happens OTK or OTB.  Sam insists this a discussion because I am required to voice my assent at certain points during his pep talk.

So at the start of any vacation - car or plane, short or extended, I am the picture of the submissive wife.  Sweet, agreeable, careful not to offer my opinion when it is not requested, patient with poor service at a restaurant, eager to please Sam in every way.  My god, my halo is shined so bright, you would need sunglasses just to stand next to me! 

Now, I don't know about how the rest of you do when away from home, but as for me, that glistening halo can begin to tarnish and slip to the side as the our pleasant leisure days pass by. 

           Little comments take on a more opinionated tone.

"Well, I think it would be better to gas up the night before, Hon."

                           Impatience can creep back in.

    "It's just dumb to waste time waiting.  Maybe you should ask."

                    Giving directions to Sam unnecessarily.

                 "You probably need to clean the windshield
                            next time we stop for gas."

                        "You need to turn at the next light."

       "Be sure you are careful of the breakables when you pack."

                  See What I Mean?   Good god, Ella, just shut up!
                          You Sound Like the Garmin Bitch.... 

When I was a kid, my dad played the soundtrack to Music Man until I knew all the lyrics by heart.  There is a song I remember called "Pick-A-Little, Talk-A-Little."  I think about those words when I start to get like this.  But many times, even though I hear myself heading down the wrong road, I do not stop.

                                        " Pick a little, talk a little, 
                       Pick a little, talk a little,
                    Cheep cheep cheep, talk a lot,
                           pick a little more..."

We were quite tired when we arrived home.  By the next morning I was in full domestic swing to set the house to rights ASAP.  So much to do before I returned to work.  Answers were short and curt.  The final straw was gum in the washing machine and dryer!  When Sam came home at lunchtime, I was in "Super Bitch" mode.  Hardly spoke.  Sam noticed right away.  

                                            Ya think?

Very soon Sam appeared in the doorway.  Hands on his hips and very quiet, too.  I couldn't even look at him.  Then he said we needed to address several issues, especially my temper.  He came over and took my hand, and we walked to the bedroom.  I stood by the bed as he opened the bottom drawer of the chest.  This wasn't going to be a happy spanking, and he laid Mr. Paddle on the bed and unzipped my jeans.

"You know what to do," was all he said.

But Sam had plenty to say once he began.  He went point by point starting with the instances where I thought it necessary to tell him what to do, especially in front of others.  When he progressed to the subject of temper, the intensity with which the paddle was being applied went up a several notches.  

The tears started, and I truly wish I could tell you that they were sad and sorry ones.  Instead, they were tears of anger, and I resisted submission both mentally and physically.  Sam wasn't having it and continued.


Even at my age, sometimes I do not understand where my anger comes from.  It has always been that way for me from my earliest memories.  This character flaw was not appreciated by my parents, the nuns at Catholic school, or public school principals when I escaped the blue catechism at age 9.  Guess you would have called me "scrappy."  I certainly didn't hesitate to start a physical fight, even with boys.  You could find me standing outside the principal's office starting about age 6.  The fighting finally stopped when I was close to 12 years old.

Today, I think one of my biggest triggers is when I perceive that someone or something is wasting my time.  That drives me freaking berserk!  Sam will just lean back, sigh, and wait patiently.  The Mount St. Ella will belch smoke for only so long before she blows. He knows how I might very well react  and helps me to deal with instances when they happen.  Sometimes, with just a gentle hand on my arm, and sometimes with a much more aggressive hand on my bottom.

I don't know how long he spanked, but when he finally let me up, I think he knew the anger was still bubbling inside me.  The capitulation hadn't happened yet.  It has been a very long time, maybe as much as a year, since he has told me to stand in the corner, but that is what he chose to do.

It only took about 2 minutes of deep breathing before things started to make sense.  Before I knew for sure that I had really screwed up.  Why does this happen when we are away from home?  Why is
it like being caught in a vortex?  If Sam is a competent man at home, isn't he still competent when we travel?  By the time Sam came back in the room, the anger had evaporated.  I was left with a sore bottom, but I also knew I needed to apologize.  Why do things seem so much simpler post spanking?  Where does my anger go? While Sam hugged me, he asked so many questions with just one single word, 


Finally I could talk and now the tears were falling because I wanted to say I was sorry.  There is never any question of being forgiven.  All the hard feelings disappear, the connection is back, and this ttwd life we have chosen is reset.

Wish I had answers to all the questions I have posed in this post, but I am glad I wrote about this.  The problem seems to creep up pretty regularly when we are away from home, and I revert to an Ella that I never liked that much.  Maybe the key to this ttwd travel glitch is to find a way for me to deescalate without the spanking when we are on the road.  A metaphorical "corner" of the world where my only task is to let the bossiness and anger go.  What if Sam just whispered in my ear and said, "Let's take a walk," or "We are going back to the hotel for a bit," or "You need to sit with me in the truck for a little while."  What if all it took was for me to stay absolutely silent for 15 minutes no matter where we were? 

It is embarrassing for me to admit to traits like bossiness and my temper.  Perhaps it is the structure that ttwd gives to our relationship that seems to break down when we are out for an extended period of time in the big, wide world.  It would help me to know if there are others who face this same challenge. 

                   "And though she be but little, she is fierce."

                                    A Midsummer Night's Dream    

'The lady doth protest too much, methinks'



  1. Hi Ella, oh dear, you have my sympathy. Sometimes it is so hard to get there, glad you are sorted now.
    love Jan, xx

    1. Thanks, Jan. I always envy people who seem to let nothing bother them. They just sort of roll with the minor irritations. That is so hard for me.

      Hugs Across the Pond,

  2. Interesting post - more so on a trip you say. Hmmm... I got to see that just a tiny bit of this. Lets just say you weren't very happy with a certain cab driver. I wonder what Sam would have thought. LOL, it's fun seeing different sides of a friend. I'm happy you have someone willing to bring you back when necessary.

    1. PK, I do remember that day. Sam would not have been pleased. He does not like for me to tell someone off. I am sot sure there is anything funny about this side of me.

      Ella Working on Patience

  3. Sorry, I can't help. I don't think I'm much different either away or home.

    Glad things are sorted out - perhaps try some of those suggestions you made the next time.

    1. Hi Sunny,
      Once I get mad, it is hard for me to think clearly, but I am always trying. Driving is the worst, and I have all sorts of self-interventions that do help when I remember to use them.

      The little girl in your Leigh Smith icon always makes me smile.


  4. Ella,
    Temper seems to be my middle name, unfortunately, and as with your Sam, there is only so much if it my man can take. Glad all is right again! You are so right that sometimes when we step away from the issue and take time to find that inner calm we are able to "get it back together" without the spanking. Love your Mount Saint Ella remark.

    1. Yes, Baker, it is that inner calm that seems to come so easily with a spanking. At least ttwd gives the power back to Sam. The temper used to lead to distancing between us. I could seethe for weeks.

      Back to a Happier Ella

  5. Hey Ella...I also have a temper and know how to use it. But it's the same at home or away and yes...Matthew did know how to reign me in and had no problem administering a barn burner in a hotel room or pulled over on the side of a backroad. Sorry you had to go through all that stress. Next time you find yourself starting to get angry, ask yourself how you would feel if Sam was behaving the same as you. Found that helped me a bit.

    Hugs and blessings...Cat

    1. Cat,
      It does help to know that others deal with a temper, too. At least I don't get into fist fights anymore! Ha, your Matthew knew his stuff!

      It is very difficult for me to think clearly when I become angry. Seeing red is a good description.

      Hugs to Cat from Ella

  6. Oh dear Ella not good but glad things are sorted out. Remember as a child the invisible key to zip our mouths? Maybe next trip zip you mouth and throw away the key to save your bottom.

    Hugs Lindy xx

    1. Lindy,
      I do remember that, especially seeing as a teacher. I even had a breaking point with kids at school, but they usually knew what buttons not to press. I had a really strong reward system in place as well, and for the most part, our school days were pleasant and happy.

      Sending Hugs Downunder,

  7. Actually I loved reading this. yes sorry for your slight disconnect, but your man knows how to set things right. I used to have a similar problem, only it would happen when I was away wearing my grandma hat, and I would sort of forget that I am not the one in charge...both while away and for a bit when I returned.
    I think you are right in thinking have some kind of signal or 'cool down' time would help. hugs abby

    1. Thanks for the empathy, Abby. Speaking of being a teacher, I think for all those years, I was used to being the boss. Hard to step away from that role.

      Hugs From Ella

  8. Hard to change who we are but you are really giving some thought to where some of your behavior comes from. Between you and Sam you are figuring it out. Love reading how sweet your relationship is and how much you obviously love each other.

    1. Deena,
      Once we are past the bumps, Sam treats me like his queen. Sometimes "love" does not seem a big enough word.

      Thanks for your lovely comment,

  9. Ella,
    As you know, Ella, we are finally home. Things will get a little dicey later this afternoon when we "settle up" concerning things that happened while we are away. Too early yet as we still are mainlining coffee and just not ourselves yet. However, I know exactly what you and Sam experienced. When we go away, we often forget to pack the most important thing of all........ our submission to our husband's wants and needs. We revert back to the old ways with the greatest of ease and just plain leave that submission right there in the back of the closet. I am pleased that the two of you are back in harmony and all it took was Mr. Paddle.

    Thank you for a real post about how this all works and works so well for the two of you.

    In the same boat,

    1. Meredith,
      I smiled when you said we, "forget to pack...our submission." That is it exactly. I remember to pack so many other things we need (and usually too many clothes) but have never found the anti-bossiness spray at the bottom of the suitcase.

      We will help each other. That is what friends are for. I know I can do better.

      Just Plain Ella

  10. Ella... what an absolutely well written post. I could find myself nodding in agreement and a smile from time to time. I can very much relate. I want to re-read this and think things over and how this applies to me as well. Leave it to Meredith to state it plainly.. we get so caught up in our routine of what has to get done that we simply put our submission on the back burner and then starts the spiral downhill. Thank goodness we have men that have the means to reign us back in and get things back to normal. Sorry Mr. Paddle had to come out, but often it takes something just like that to get our attention back and for us to refocus on what is expected. Thanks for sharing this particular situation.

    1. What a lovely thing to say, Annabelle. I love when you visit here. Yes, you are so right. Mere is gifted at getting to the heart of the matter. Most said in the least number of words. You have also found the core when you talk about the spiral downhill. That is what I meant by a vortex from which you cannot escape. Thanks for all your insights.


  11. we all have things that get to us and make us react strongly. I am glad your man can help you find your way back. Sorry it was a difficult path. Much love

  12. Ella, you are not alone! Harry has tried spanking in hotels but it is counter-productive, as I get so agitated about being overheard I can't get into the right head space. I'm getting better but, if it's a break of more than a few days, a reset on returning home is a given.
    Rosie xx