I am at a point in my leather journey (good lord that’s an opener that is so incredibly overused – but I digress) where I have come to realize something very simple and basic…yet something incredibly easy to forget.  And that is that in leather, and in life, love equals protection…and it’s something we all want.  Whether it’s love expressed in the course of friendship or courtship, in mentorship or even play….what ultimately leads us into that place of trust and fulfillment, where we see possibilities in ourselves that we hadn’t seen before, and hand over all our fears and inhibitions to allow ourselves to grow….is that unspoken element where no matter what, we’re on somebody’s watch.  And we know it, we FEEL it in our core.

It’s sounds elementary…naturally we’re looking out for the person we care for, right?  Isn’t that an inane part of being a human being?  Certainly.  And as leather folk this is the kind of “tribal languaging” that is driven into our souls from the moment we step foot in our first play party.   But how often do we get caught up in all the things that “cloud” that ability to provide and nurture?   …our being burned somehow in our past, or our need to be competitive, or be territorial.  How many of us claim to be a friend or confidant to one another, when in fact we’re actually exercising an agenda at the other person’s expense?  Perhaps we don’t feel secure in ourselves and our connections, and our only recourse is to sabotage others.  It may not make us feel good, but it at least enables us to not feel “conquered”.  We may not even be conscious that we’re doing it…often the most destructive individuals are those that are engulfed by their own cowardice.  Let’s face it…we all have fear in this journey…and sometimes we even allow others to see just how scared we are.  Ultimately though, don’t we all want to simply feel protected?

As a leatherman, I have had the privilege and honor of being approached by members of the community who identify as Dominants, who for one reason or another have felt safe in exploring subspace with me.  In the course of our exchanges, something occurs where the person for one reason or another feels that they can trust the space with me, they can freely step into it and see what it’s about, be vulnerable…and then see how they feel after venturing there.  My own boy, Scott Bryen of Edmonton, was a prime example of this. Having been solely a Sir and Daddy for many years it wasn’t until recently he opted to embrace his submissive side.  I certainly don’t share this to “toot my own horn”…anyone who knows me well enough knows I’m humble enough lol…but, it did lead me to thinking about what was happening.  And why.  And in asking several of these men why they suddenly wanted to try being a pup to me or allowing me to rope up their bodies….there was a common component.  And that was that no matter how intense or even sadistic the play had become, they would always feel that they were somehow “special” to me in that moment.  That from the beginning to the climax, and through the aftercare…they were always going to be taken care of.

Every time I am made aware of this, I feel incredibly honored that this person gives me their trust.  I feel that alone is a kind of victory that must be cherished.  But it also leads me to think, “isn’t this simply our job as leather folk?”  I’ll readily admit that there is something incredibly seductive about being looked after by a caring eye.  Yes we all want intense power exchanges…sometimes with immense raging endorphins and a kind of abandon where an amazing catharsis of emotions and energy occurs between the players.  When you experience it it’s like a powerful drug that at times changes who you are and creates a bond that is almost spiritual.  But ultimately what is it that makes all that possible?  It’s the protective love we provide for one another.

I recently went through some emotional challenges in my relationship with MY Sir on the very subject.  Yes, I have a Sir of my own that many do not know of.  Our relationship is stealth to many, but I have an emotional and spiritual connection to him that has profoundly changed my life permanently, and I am a better Sir and leatherman as a result of it.  While you may never see him with me, you will see his mark on my back for the rest of my life.  A few months ago, he explored the possibility of adding another member to the family.  It was a person that for various reasons I was not on board with.  And to put it mildly, I became a vicious scorpion and stung everything in sight out of rage.  While I am not proud of my behavior…what was at the core of the issue was not this particular person, but rather my own fears of not feeling SAFE.  There was suddenly the possibility of another presence in our family that I equated with losing what I had kept sacred with Sir.  Were those fears real?  Most of them were not.  They were simply ghosts of my history rearing their ugly heads.  But the threat felt valid, and the damage I tried to cause was certainly very real.

Ultimately things didn’t work for the family prospect..and everything worked out on its own, happily without my terrorizing :). But it made me suddenly aware of something that we see constantly in our community.  Who else do we know or observe that exhibits that kind of “destructive scorpion tail” behavior?  I know each of you has names of your own as I have mine…that’s not what’s important so much as…why might they be terrorizing or sabotaging?  Have we ever stopped and asked, “what exactly is that person threatened by?”  Yes the easiest course of action is to simply write someone off as an asshole or bitch or a poser or drama queen.  And we’re all about making life as easy and enjoyable as possible in a journey that has enough challenges.  But, what would it actually take to stop and think, “perhaps they lost their security somewhere too”.    Sometimes simply taking that frame of mind gives you just the right amount of compassion, and ultimately, forgiveness.  It’s not to say that suddenly you’re bringing that hurtful person into your boundaries…but if anything, you can peacefully let them just “be”.  It’s a challenge I constantly have to remind myself of.  But I like rising to the task.

We’ve all had our times of wanting to just throw in the towel and abandon our journey in leather, and what comes up in our relationships in our path.  Many times we may even feel abandoned, or lost.  And yet, the reminder of what inspired our connections to begin with, that driving force…it’s our love for one another.

And when you feel that protective love, be it from a friend, lover, brother, boy or Sir, they become something else….your HOME.  And vice versa.

Play hard everybody 🙂