Just for a second

The cat is back. But this time he has hundreds of companions, all padding softly by his side. Ginger and white and brown and black, their fur slides against each other and their pin prick paws tap the floorboards. I can feel the army march as I lie flat on the wooden ground. I twist my head to see him.

There he is, eyes of electric green and angled like almonds: to him, I smile.

But you cannot play favourites. The others see and move towards me. I feel the pressure pads as one after another clambers, claw footed, onto my legs and stomach. One, folds of fat wrapped around his gut like rubber rings, thrums with a guttural purr as he settles over my womb and then opens his tiny jaw to yowl. Again. Again.

Quiet.

I reach out to them and at first they respond. Triangle noses bash against my fingers and rough tongues flick at my skin. I knot my hands into their fur and stroke them, welcoming them.

Green Eyes is stalking up my body. The sea of felines part to let him pass, their heads bowing, but a shiver decends on the room when he touches his nose to mine. Their eyes shrink to slits, and a sound like a burst pipe issues from them. I gasp as I feel their claws elongate, curling under their paws and piercing through my clothes to my skin. The sharp pain as the needle nails draw blood is somehow familiar and dreadful.

In panic, I look for Green Eyes, but he has disappeared. He has left his family on me, scratching at the muscular swell of my legs, the soft pillow of stomach, the arches of my breasts, the bones of my shoulder, all the way down my arms to my knuckles. I scream after him but I get no other response than a mimicking screech from the feline army enveloping me, mocking me. The pain now is sharp and constant, like the slow, drawn out sketch of a tattoo. Tears start rolling down my cheeks: I try to breathe, but the inhalation pushes my chest and stomach out so their claws reach deeper. I cannot move, cannot push them away, they will not listen. More are coming.

As tails flick in my face and choke me with fur, as blood blossoms from unseen holes and I leak from my skin, I close my eyes.

And for a second – just for a second – I stop breathing.

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Whip me, baby

I’ve been posting a little bit less recently, but largely because I’ve been struggling with a comment that me and le man received from someone we thought well of.

This person turned to the man I love, and accused him of being with me purely for the physical benefits of a relationship (…well, not in so many words. I deserve some kind of medal for the polite phrasing I morphed that disgusting comment into), ultimately saying he is ‘whipped.’

Now, I don’t know about you, but I didn’t understand what this slang meant at first. The internet as ever, provides some useful definitions, though many of them in rather colourful language. Here’s one definition:

Whipped: When a man is controlled by his girlfriend…almost entirely. To the point of embarrassment when his friends tell him that his girlfriend has got him whipped.’

Eurgh. Vile. I didn’t even know how to handle this. The first thing I felt was repulsion – I was appalled by the insinuation that our relationship wasn’t worth anything, that after so much time together, it was not love holding us together, but sex. This person doesn’t know us as well as they seem to think, they are not in this relationship and so have no authority on the subject. It’s a betrayal to accuse someone of this kind of relationship, because it implies so much vulgarity in the accused’s character.

It took a while to work through this. It took a while to not be angry at le man for him not standing up for us – but as he said, a response to a thing like that is difficult to muster on the spot. It’s not so easy to have a smart, defensive retort when you’re busy seeing red.

It took a while because that person threw an ugly light onto something I see as so perfect and fragile. The physical side of any relationship is a private matter, one that exists only within that bubble. Having it commented on outside of the bubble is unsettling and enraging – it’s an infringement on that privacy and a belittlement of what you share.

It taken a while, yes, but now I’m ok. Because I’ve decided I couldn’t care less about what that person thinks of us. The way I see it, being ‘whipped’ is not a bad thing. It can get ugly if a relationship is unbalanced, yes, but that is an entirely different argument. This person is a fool to think that it is only le man who is ‘whipped.’

I am whipped, never mind about le man. I am the most ‘whipped’ person I’ve known in a relationship. And you know what? That is exactly what I want to be.

Because if I understand it correctly, it essentially means you’re willing to do anything and everything for the person you love, even if it means compromising the public image of yourself. As far as I understand, it means that you are loyal and devoted and would go to the ends of the earth for love. As far as I understand it, those who accuse others of being ‘whipped’ are people whose own lives are devoid of that kind of love. They have never experienced that love and will never open themselves up to the possibility of experiencing it. They themselves will never be ‘whipped’.

And gosh, I think that is the saddest thing in the whole world.

Because in being so ‘whipped’, I have never been happier.

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