Thus began a post that changed everything. In September of 2012, the late* Poppy invited the readers of her blog to participate in a 30-day reflection on submission. Each day, she posted a question and her response to it, inviting her readers to share their responses and reactions as well.
In September of 2012, I had been reading spanking blogs for several years but could count on one hand the number of times I had commented. This challenge was the invitation I needed to start participating more fully, writing more frequently, reflecting on my own submission more deeply and opening my thoughts to others in a supportive environment.
At the time, I thought it daunting but exciting. Healthy. Little did I know the impact this exercise would have.
In September 2012, I was living in a different country, working a different job. I had never been spanked, nor had I even begun writing about my fantasies and desires. I was preparing for a trip to the UK the following month, during which I would meet one of the authors who deeply inspired me- a man who would later encourage me in my own writing and efforts to integrate into the local spanking community.
I also promised myself that I would revisit this exercise, answer these questions later when I’d gained more experience. Now, five years later, seems an opportune time; the last five years have provided far more experience than I could have imagined- which bodes very well for the next five!
Each day I will post the question, followed by my answers- the first from 2012 and the second from today.
I encourage you to join me in this, to respond to these questions yourself (substituting the word “dominance” for “submission” in the questions if applicable). I would love to hear any thoughts you are willing to share in the comments below.
Lastly, I present the promise I made to myself when I started this. At the time, it was kept private**, a file on my computer that I had not reopened until recently. This worked for me before, so I recommit myself in these same words.
I will answer each question each day, or as soon as I can afterward. I will not look ahead. (2017: I totally cheated on that bit around day 10, but I did try. . .) I will not go back and change my answers. If I edit, I will edit for clarity and not content.
I will revisit this later. I will not change my previous answers, or feel ashamed by them. This is who I am now, and I will be ok with that. When looking back, I will accept myself- including the parts that have changed and the parts that I want to change. I will embrace those pieces as part of me, look to what I strive to be, and see what happens.
*”Late” may be somewhat misleading, but “inactive” or “defunct” sound far to impersonal. The blog is gone, the avatar Poppy is dead. The woman who created her, however, appeared quite lively indeed when I last visited her in London a few weeks ago. She is still a dear friend, and someone to whom I owe a great deal. To her and all others who have made these last five years special, thank you from the bottom of my heart.
**A few times during this exercise, I wrote a two part response to the question, one shared publicly in my comment and the other kept private. Reasons varied- a struggle to put a feeling into words, a desire to not impose negative thoughts on the otherwise happy friendly blog where I was a mere visitor, pure shame. Looking back over these now, I am glad that I saved both, and glad that I have moved beyond where I was then. Therefore, where applicable, I will present both.
Day 1: Does your submission- either what you practice or what you strive for- have a label?
Day 2: Describe who you might submit to and how.
Day 3: How do you know you are submissive or have the potential to be submissive?
Day 4: Do you switch into a dominant role at any time?
Day 5: Have you been or are you in a dominant/submissive dynamic relationship, or is this new to you?
Day 6: What do you feel are the roots of your submission?
Day 7: Do you accept and/or expect discipline or punishments as part of your submission?
Day 8: Is spanking or corporal punishment a part of your submission?
Day 9: Do you accept and/or expect structure, rules and limits as a part of your submission?
Day 10: Does any element of BDSM occur as a part of your submissive relationships?
Day 11: Do you include service as a part of your expectations of your submission?
Day 12: Do you include financial submission within the definition of your own submission?
Day 13: Is sexual availability, being available to your partner any time he or she wants, part of your submission?
Day 14: Does religion have any bearing on your decision to submit?
Day 15: Has your submission evolved over time?
Day 16: Have you found your submission has changed with different partners/relationships?
Day 17: What does trust mean to you in the context of submission?
Day 18: How does communication factor into your submission and how do you communicate your desires and needs?
Day 19: How socially connected is your submission?
Day 20: Has your submission increased or decreased over time?
Day 21: Is there a physical position that makes you feel most submissive?
Day 22: Can you feel submissive without a dominant partner?
Day 23: Is there anything about submission (yours or what you see in others) that you question, dislike or repels you?
Day 24 What are the emotions that most directly let you access submission?
Day 25: Are there items, objects or rituals that represent or help you express submission?
Day 26: What are the qualities you seek in a dominant partner and why?
Day 27: Do you have submissive desires or fantasies that you have yet to be able to explore?
Day 28: Has your submission ever let you down?
Day 29: Is pain or humiliation (spankings for example) a part of your submission?
Day 30: Is your need to submit being met?