When I divorced, I wished for an interesting life.
|A pedestrian mall in SacTown. Yawn.|
Before we separated in 2006, my life followed the pattern that many lives do: school, career, marriage. The only difference between me and others was that I married late and didn't have children. By the time I hit my mid-fifties, I felt that life was passing me by. I loved to travel but had lived in the same small city--Sacramento--for twenty years. It's not that there's anything wrong with SacTown--perfectly good place. But it's so average that it's known to pollsters as "the Peoria of the West."
Ten years ago, my life seemed to have fallen apart. I had abandoned my career as an attorney several years before--I'd hated it, and had found writing. With a few books published, I felt it was safe to leave the law and write full-time. I had a dentist husband bringing home plenty of soy bacon, and I hadn't done so badly myself as an attorney.
The several disasters struck at about the same time.
My eldest brother was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer.
My best friend and her husband committed double suicide.
I hit menopause.
My marriage crumbled under the accumulated stress.
My brother died.
I was about as blocked as any writer could be. I would stare at the screen and wonder whether I should type, if, and, but or when.
They say, "When the going gets tough, the tough get going." True. I got going, and went all the way to Thailand, where I rested, healed, and began writing again. Not with a super-fast output, but fast enough.
After six months overseas, I returned refreshed and renewed. I took care of my
divorce, saw my family and when I recognized that the economic situation in the USA was unsustainable for me, went overseas again. I eared a CELTA credential and taught toddlers English in China for nearly a year.
|Suzie in China on a rainy day|
Upon my return, I took over a job that no one else in my family seemed capable of handling: caring for my elderly mother, who has Alzheimer's.
I again started to feel trapped.
So when an exciting man offered me an exciting experience, one I'd wanted for a very long time, I took it.
Be careful of what you wish for.
Here's a selection from my BDSM memoir, Perilous Play: The Real Fifty Shades
I have been interested in BDSM since I read the Story of O when I was about seventeen years old. However, years passed before I found a lover who shared my interest—a shockingly long time to wait for a treat. So when a prospective lover hinted that he was a Dominant, I jumped at the chance to be with him. It didn’t hurt that he was precisely what I want in a man—or so I thought upon our first meeting.
“Would you like to cane me, sir?”
Having asked the question, I jerked upright with a gasp. I couldn’t believe those words had come out of my mouth.
But they weren’t surprising given the context of the relationship. I had met Trapper Hart a couple of months before—we attended the same law school. One day, mentally drained after a con law midterm, I left the classroom to find a tall, well-built guy lingering outside. Smiling, he engaged me in conversation, and I tried to seem really interesting because, articulate and attractive, he was everything I looked for in a man.
He didn’t ask me out right away. We started our friendship in the library, where he’d bring me cappuccinos—wet with extra foam, and treats—he knew I liked double fudge brownies with nuts.
free with KU
He’d found out what I liked, and I luxuriated in the notion that he really cared. I didn’t know this man well, but he had a knack for getting under my defenses. I’d had numerous boyfriends, and none had ever bothered to discover my cappuccino and brownie preferences. It was special, and made me feel special.
One day, feeling exceptionally brave and bold, I asked, “Do you have a girlfriend?”
After a brief hesitation, he answered, “There are a few women that I see.”
“Huh.” I absorbed that. Figuring that he couldn’t be in love with any of them—if so there’d be only one—I asked, “Are you in the market for one? I mean, a girlfriend?”
I glowed at his positive answer. But a week or so later, at a mixer for the mayor of Berkeley, he was at the restaurant with not one but two women. Both were pretty, well-groomed blondes, one with a smooth bob and the other, an older woman, with bleached curlier hair.
Nevertheless, I continued my brave and bold approach, guessing that the women were friends, not lovers. I learned subsequently they could have been both, and that Trapper could have reveled in a threesome later that night. I never found out and later, I wouldn’t dare to ask my Dom such an intrusive question.
Yes, Trapper became my Dom, the man I’d wanted in my life.
Perilous Play has been well-received, with five 5 star reviews on Amazon.
I know a lot of authors write BDSM and a lot of readers love that subgenre. If you want to know what it's really like, read this book.