In the past five months, my life has taken quite a turn. Met a man, fell in love, moved in together, merged our lives in all the messy ways couples do.

He’s given me a garden. A bare patch of dirt that we weeded together and have been busy filling in with herbs and flowers. On weekends he takes me to nurseries and buys plants with me, then we come home and get our hands dirty. Digging in, putting down roots.

On Sunday I found a soft silk halter top I’d forgotten about after my move last year, and wore it out on our most recent garden outing. The sun felt good on my bare back, and I felt liberated and free in the open air. Common sense told me to put on sunscreen, but I seldom listen to common sense. The result was a mild sunburn, but nothing so bad that I worried about it too much. Monday night after we’d had dinner and late night showers to wash off the dirt and sweat, he tackled me on the bed and bit into my shoulder. I gasped at the sensation, and relaxed into the pain. He bit more, harder, all around my back and shoulders, eliciting more gasps, sighs and shudders as I found myself happy to be at his mercy.

My first official night as a resident of his house, we both fell into bed exhausted after midnight. I assumed he’d be too tired for much more than snoring, but he surprised me by flipping me on my back and getting down to business for the next half hour. We spent several days adjusting to being around each other more often, and sex slowed down again. Sometimes the rhythm works for us both, and a break is good. Other times I find myself moody and withdrawn, wondering what it’s going to take to rekindle his interest. He’s learning to let me work through things on my own until I’m ready to talk to him about what’s bothering me, and he listens. “I can’t read you mind,” he reminds me, “so if you’re upset, you need to let me know what I can do about it.”

While washing dishes together yesterday, I dug down into what was bothering me, and broke my silence of many hours to let him know that I needed more sex, please. My body is tuned to a higher sex drive than most women, it would seem, and without it I can get seriously irritable and unpleasant to be around. I also mentioned missing some of the rougher aspects of our early sex life. The tender stuff is wonderful, don’t get me wrong, but the pain, rough handling and domination that we’d be dabbling with before was more enjoyable than I’d ever imagined or experienced with other partners. He leaned over the sink and looked at me, still withdrawn, as I stared at the pan I was drying. “Okay,” he said. “See? That wasn’t so hard. Just talk to me.” He wiped his hands on a towel, took the pan out of my hands, put it on the counter and took my hands in his, then kissed them. A few hours later we lay in bed, tumbled and bitten, but very happy.

Communication is a wonderful thing. So is being honest with myself so I can be honest with him. The deep stuff can be disconcerting to look at, but it’s necessary to dig through it to see the other side.

 

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