Alone time

This week’s Food for thought Friday is about making time for yourself. I am fortunate that I am able to grab some alone time most weeks. It helps that the person I live with absolutely needs time to himself, just as I do.

How often do you make time for yourself?

This depends on what we have going on in a given week. Now I am not working I am able to spend more time doing all the things I love. But there is always a danger that you try to cram too much in. This must be why retired people exclaim that they don’t know how they found time to go to work.

Master and I do most things together. We shop, cook and watch films, go out to concerts and to the cinema. We travel to lovely places, wander through and around churches and galleries. One of the reasons I stopped working as soon as I could was so that I wasn’t constantly running out of annual leave or using up entire precious weekends.

So when we have a quieter week we both take advantage. Master tends to go into his study and until now I would be on the sofa with my lap top, or else reading. But I’ve decided to return to some form of work as well as to step up my blogging pursuits. So last week we went to Ikea and bought a desk and chair for me. We have installed this in a spare bedroom. Next we plan to put in some serious shelving so that my books, which are currently residing in the garage can come into the house.

What do you do to gain the most benefit from your “you time”?

For me (and also for him I think), it is about head space. When you are constantly in the company of others there is no time to just get into your own head. To think. We both also like silence sometimes and when we listen to music we have different tastes. So spending time apart is good.

Sometimes I will go for a walk during ‘my time’. This allows me to get some fresh air and exercise while also taking time to think and reflect.

The time we spend apart enables us to have stuff to talk about when we are together. It also means that we are both mentally refreshed for whatever activity we are planning.

How do you balance the time you devote to yourself and to others? Which do you prioritise? Why?

There was a time when everyone else in my life came first. My husband and son, work, parents. Gradually over the past few years this has changed. Leaving my house in the hands of my ex and his new partner signified a change for me. Then leaving work and of course having surgery last autumn forced changes upon me. I had no choice but to prioritise me and us.

My mum now lives 2 hours away. This means visits are planned and I tend to stay over night with her and travel back the next day. My son was married at Christmas and he and his wife live in the town I moved from. This is about 40 minutes away, so again our time together is more planned than it used to be.

There is a calmness to my life that wasn’t there before. At last there is balance. But I think I deserve the life, and the alone time I get to have for now.

Loss

This week’s food for thought Friday is about loss and asks: what is your most significant loss?

This presents me with a conundrum. What is my most significant loss? Is it the loss of trust I experienced when my husband cheated on me early in my marriage? Is it the loss of my grandmother 20 years ago this year. After all she was a massive influence on me as a person. Indeed she still is. Is it the loss of my father in 2014, after all the loss of a parent is a significant thing for anyone as they travel through life. Losing a parent makes you face your own mortality. As I head towards 60 (only 3 years to go), I do think about death more. Mainly because I want to pack so much in before that happens.

Those things are all massive milestones in my life. But I guess they feel inevitable, even betrayal. You have to be lucky to get through to the end of your life without someone doing the dirty on you.

No, the most significant loss is that of my right breast. Look up at the picture above this text. At the voluptuous cleavage, that woman is me. The loss of that part of my body does not get any easier, no matter what kind of brave face I put on it.

I can no longer wear whatever I want

Walk down any bra aisle in a department store and only a small proportion are suitable for me. I love beautiful lingerie and while there are specialist providers of beautiful post mastectomy products, they aren’t what I want to buy. I long for plunging necklines or balcony bras. If I wear one of my many low cut tops or dresses with one of my current bras you see lots of lace. That is fine, but I want to show off my cleavage.

Loss of feeling

Since my surgery last year my body doesn’t feel the same. Not only is there a large piece of me missing but what is there is numb. Around the scar line the sensation is reduced and under my arm it is absolutely absent. Strangely I can’t feel if I pinch myself, but I can feel hot water as it runs down my body. These days I spend longer in the shower because of this.

All is not lost of course

I am alive and I don’t have cancer. The chance of me dying of breast cancer in the future is miniscule. I am also going to see the surgeon soon about reconstruction surgery. So there is every chance that I will get my cleavage back and be able to wear low cut clothes again. It is likely that my new breast will be smaller than the old one, and I may need a reduction on the left side. But hopefully it will help me to feel whole again.

So many people have commented on my bravery, (which I acknowledge but don’t really see), when I think I was just coping as best I could. In truth I am still angry and upset this has happened. I feel guilty for these feelings because so many people are worse off than me. After all I have fully recovered.

I am ready to share photos of me as I am now, starting with this week’s Boobday (link to follow). The photo was taken at the end of Eroticon with (I think) 26 other people. I am used to how I look and I accept it. But I am beyond sad about what I have lost and that feeling won’t go away. Even after I have a new boob made of fat from my abdomen.

Mind and body

A two pin plug and socket. The word body at the top and the word mind beneath

During the course of this relationship I and we have had some amazing times. It is definitely the case that I have had more sex during the past 5 years than I had during the previous 30. But we have had some lean periods during that time, when my, his or our mind and body don’t work together. Sometimes the body is willing and able but for emotional or psychological reasons sex doesn’t happen. More frequently though, the problem has been physical.

Emotional and psychological health

We are in the fortunate position that we live together and neither of us are working. This wasn’t always the case and certainly until last summer tiredness was a major factor for me. I had spent a couple of years juggling a demanding job, preparing to move and care for my widowed mum. On top of that were the not to be underestimated effects of the menopause. Feeling exhausted doesn’t necessarily mean sleep comes easily and even if you fall asleep hot flashes and night sweats make you wake again. Additionally, anxiety about the end of my marriage and decisions about the house often caused me to lie awake at night.

Master tends not to be troubled by an inability to sleep. Though from time to time he struggles to get enough sleep, he certainly needs far more of it than me.

Tiredness has interfered with my sexual appetite and for a long time I felt I could take or leave sex. Luckily, Master often wanted to take it and has some ingenious ways of getting me in the mood. Being his slave means that I rarely say no to him, even if I don’t feel much like it. Not because I can’t refuse him, but because I have made a commitment with him which I want to honour. In the past I might have said no and turned over. But now I wait to see how my body responds first. Often, I start to become aroused even if my brain is saying no and when that happens, who am I to deny my body?

Physical health

There is no doubt that physical health problems have got in the way of our ability to enjoy an active sex and kinky life. The first issue we encountered was Master’s frozen shoulder. This made it difficult for him to find a comfortable position on top of me . It also made impact play painful for him. We had to adapt our favoured positions, which led to the purchase of the swing. But really it wasn’t until he recovered that things returned to normal.

A physical effect of the menopause was pain during PIV sex. Luckily this didn’t coincide with the frozen shoulder, when I was often on top. There were times when my vagina would go into spasm as soon as his cock came anywhere near me. This caused pain and a lot of upset. I am so luck that Master is a patient man, who happens to love touching me with his fingers and mouth. Also of course there is plenty I can do with my mouth too. Thankfully those, I think menopause related issues have disappeared and sex is pain free.

Strangely my mastectomy and subsequent treatment have had limited effect on us. Within a couple of weeks of the operation we were able to have sex again, though he was scared of causing me pain. For me, position was an issue and I couldn’t lie on my right side of lean on my right arm. These have mostly resolved, though I still can’t lie on my right side for any length of time.

Our ability to play has probably been affected, partly because we haven’t wanted to go to events while treatment was ongoing. But also because I have been very tired over the past months. Daily trips to the hospital and lack of sunlight over the winter months have affected him too.

Ageing

We intend to grow older together and we now know some of the things we might encounter. His ability to ejaculate frequently is already something that happens. I can come many many times for his once and so we make that one time meaningful. Our bodies take time to recover from exercise and activity. We don’t always have the energy that we think we should.

But recognising the effect of mind and body over our ability to have a fulfilling sex life and relationship bode well for the future. We’ll certainly keep going in whatever way we can for as long as we can.

The touch of our hands

The touch of his hands

I love to feel his hands on my body. When he comes up behind me and takes hold of my waist, my bottom, my breasts in both hands. Or when he strokes my leg while we sit together or even when he takes my hand in his while we watch a film. I love them all.

Best of all though is when he strokes my naked body, the feel of his fingers gently caressing my skin. A gentle, or even hard pinch of the nipple and the way he strokes my clit exclaiming that I am turned on. He feigns surprise and I smile at him in agreement; who would have imagined his touch could excite in this way. I love that he wants to spend time exploring my body, knowing me in a way no man ever has before.

His hands are smooth, he doesn’t do manual work often. This is in contrast to the hands that touched me before. There is nothing wrong with rougher hands, they tell their own story. But I like these, love them in fact. He slides his fingers inside me and then tastes them, he says he loves the scent and taste of me.

I don’t even mind when he touches my feet. I used to be much more ticklish than I am now. Sometimes I sit at one end of the sofa and he at the other, he holds my foot and strokes the instep. I find it arousing.

The touch of my hands

There was a time when he didn’t like to be touched. At the beginning it had been a while for him. But I don’t think that is all it was. While he has always liked to hold hands and to touch me he found me touching him unnerving. He only really liked it if he saw my hands land on him. He loves his nipples squeezed and rubbed when we have sex, that was the start. Now I am able to touch his arms, tummy, legs. Of course his cock was always a different matter he loves that, always did.

I like to touch and stroke him with my fingers, but even now there are times when he prefers I don’t. However he doesn’t complain if I kiss instead. Lips on lips, cock, his neck or nipples. Touch is important and touching him is what I like to do.

I don’t touch myself as much as I once did, particularly in the vulval area. Thus is partly because I have him there to touch me instead. Sometimes he tells me to touch my pussy, instructs me to show him how I make myself come. I enjoy doing this in a way I never imagined I would.

I do stroke my breast and where my other breast once was. This helps to remind me of what I still have but also because I like the feel of it. The softness of my own body, the way it feels different when I touch myself rather than he touches me is always interesting to acknowledge.

Our hands. The way we touch ourselves and each other are an important part of our sexual relationship. Perhaps more important than I previously recognised.

February Photofest

Relationships – F4TF

I do love to keep up with the various memes, but with the added pressure of February Photofest I am struggling this week. So, this is going to be a bit briefer than usual. Food 4 Thought Friday is about relationships.

Casual sex, dating, friends with benefits, hook-up, one night stand, fuck-buddy; have you ever had one (or more) of these arrangements? What is the difference?

I am not the most experienced of daters, since I was married to the same man for 30 years. But I have dated without sex (during my marriage), had a hook up with a man that led to a relationship (see below) and then to us being fuck buddies. I guess some people set out to have a specific type of date / arrangement but for me it is an after the fact thing. I only know what it turned out to be once it was done.

What is the most interesting way you ever met a partner?

Back in the 90s people contacted each other by placing an advertisement in the local newspaper. My husband was ‘working away‘ a lot at the time and I was fed up and lonely. I didn’t meet a partner. But I did form a friendship with a local guy for a while. He told me my husband definitely wasn’t ‘working away’ and he was right! He and I never had sex but he was great company.

Have you ever had a hook-up become a relationship? How do you know that it had happened?

My first D/s encounter with S was meant to be a hook up. But we enjoyed ourselves so much it turned into more. That and I was keen and willing to travel. I know now that if I hadn’t, it would have fizzled out much sooner than it did.

How would you tell a potential partner you want a non-monogamous or D/s relationship? If you are already in one, how did it evolve?

I don’t think non-monogamy is for me, since I was in that kind of relationship and it ended badly. The other woman brought out tendencies in me I didn’t like. I don’t really desire another man as such. I think that if we wanted to introduce others it would be for play only. We are already in a D/s relationship so I don’t need to ask for that.

If your relationship is poly, what is its principal dynamic? Do you have a primary? A few fuck buddies? Is everyone equal? Does everyone know?

It isn’t – see above. There wasn’t much time for people to know about the poly relationship as it only lasted a few months. I was the second and didn’t take to it much.

What does your ideal relationship look like? Are you already in it?

I’m happier than I have been for a long time, if ever. So yes, I’m in it.

Loving and being in love

What is the difference between loving someone and being in love with someone?

There are many different types of love. Of a parent for a child, a child for a parent, of friends. Then there is the love felt between those physically and emotionally attracted to each other. Falling in love is something that seems to happen at the beginning of a relationship, though it is possible to fall in love more than once. Perhaps when something special happens or one or both parties face a particular challenge. That first flush of love, just as you are getting to know each other is a special time. One of investigation and discovery, a time when the seeds of trust and communication are planted.

To truly love someone you need to have trust in them and to feel that you can be yourself. You need to be able to let your guard slip and to know they will always have your back. Love needs to be unconditional, because we all make mistakes, need to show our vulnerable side.

I truly feel that my cancer diagnosis caused a re-evaluation of our relationship and the love we have for each other. The way Master coped, the emotions he showed and the way he has tried to support and protect me, made me fall in love with him all over again. I have loved him for most of the 5 years we have been together but maybe we aren’t always in love. But, life settled down and things became routine. Right now as we explore the next part of our life together I am sure I am in love with him and love him too.

How does these differences colour and effect the way you interact with that person?

Love between two (or more) people in a relationship becomes, over time, business as usual, as it were. Maybe that is the time when you can take each other for granted and bad habits can creep in. Don’t get me wrong, it is cosy, perhaps like an old sweater, but it can also lead to complacency. It is the job of the people in the relationship to make sure that element of surprise remains. Because having been in a long term relationship that turned stale you can never take love for granted.

Where sex is involved, does the emotional layer affect its quality?

You don’t have to love or be in love to have sex, but it certainly adds another layer. For us, being in a power exchange relationship love has helped us understand our own and each others body. We have learned to understand and meet each other’s needs and to make allowances when there are problems. I trust him to care for me and keep me safe, but also to push my perceived limits. Love makes us want to satisfy and please the other in a way that doesn’t happen in a casual relationship.

Where do lust and desire fit into this?

Lust is important in any relationship as it helps keep the spark going. But lust can also be mistaken for love. I am pretty sure that during my relationship with S, I was in lust rather than love. Because while devastated for about 2 weeks the first time he finished with me I pretty soon recovered. The second time, I walked away and found Master. The sex had been amazing but I realised I needed more from a relationship. Thankfully I have found it.

Stripping off

This weeks Food 4 Thought Friday is about taking your clothes off and revealing all. While I have never stripped my clothes off during a game of cards or pole danced in public I am not averse to getting naked.

Private show

I am no stranger to getting my clothes off for Master when the time is right. Whether that is on a winters evening following dinner and a bottle of wine or a summer afternoon on holiday. Alcohol is a useful aid to losing all inhibitions, though it isn’t always required. Just a bit of encouragement, perhaps an order or request and sometimes just a whim of my own. He prefers me naked to wearing clothes, including lingerie and I have certainly been known to strip for him and dance around naked. Last summer I even did so in the garden of my former home. Just days before the move, I cared little about the neighbours by that moment.

Public exposure

I’ve written before about my experiences at CMnf events. The first time I was petrified, but within moments realised I was among like minded people. I find the stress of knowing what to wear at a kink event worse than the freedom of being naked. However, I would be careful about where I chose to do it. There is no risk of me randomly stripping off in a public place unless I know it to be appropriate. Even if I had drunk a bottle of wine!

I am pretty sure I will be taking my clothes off in public again, but don’t know when that will be at the moment. There is another CMnf coming up in March, but we have a clash of events, so won’t be going. This puts off the decision about how I manage things now I only have one boob. My worry is about upsetting and offending others, rather than myself. But this change in body image is important. Even getting into the hot tub naked at a club will mean people seeing my body. People may stare and ask questions, which of course is fine.

I would love one day to go to a naturist resort. My apartment in France is not far from Cap D’adge and I would love to visit. I can think of nothing better than being free to wander around naked (though my pale skin may object). Maybe that is a thought for after my breast reconstruction! Meanwhile I’ll stick to being naked in private or exclusive company.

Time for sex

Anytime feels good for sex, so long as you have and allow time for it. We tend to have sex in the mornings, but it depends on the situation. Previous relationships have been a little different.

When I was married

Hubby and I often had sex during the commercial break of a TV programme. I kid you not. He worked long hours and got up early, so tended to fall asleep at bedtime (if not before). His favourite thing was to have sex during the evening once our son was in bed. However this didn’t really rock my boat, especially since there was very little if any foreplay involved.

Afternoon fun

When I began to stray from the marital bed, my dalliances tended to take place in the afternoon. I had something going with a guy who was actually impotent, but who gave the most amazing orgasms. I used to slip away from work or on a day off and meet him, especially in the summer. Much of it was alfresco and I have orgasmed in some beautiful locations.

With S, lots of our sex was in the daytime. Often I didn’t manage to stay over night with him so we’d spend much of the day in bed. He was a guy who seemed to be able to get it up any time, perhaps I just made him horny. We also had sex outside, including on a picnic table!

Taking the time for sex

Since I got together with Master, most of our sex has taken place in the mornings. This has traditionally been when we have had the most time to just lie there and be. Time to touch and caress and to kiss. Often things start slowly and build. He might have been looking at some porn or lying there soon after waking stroking me. He loves to open my legs gently with caressing strokes and then to go down on me. He says he loves the taste of me and I have to admit I love the way it makes me feel. Since I gave up work we have made much more time for sex, even taking account of my recent illness.

On holiday when the day is hot, we love to retire to bed for a rest. We will probably have had wine at lunch and need to cool down. There is something very arousing about the aroma of a sun warmed body mixed with sexual desire. The desire to get cool is put on hold while we join together for some hot sex in our room.

Occasionally we engage in some late night sex. This is usually pretty drink fuelled, especially on my part. This is probably the only time I initiate it, often by stripping off and kneeling before him. Though there are times when it starts with Master getting me to suck his cock first.

I guess the only rule about any of this is so long as it feels right then it is the right time.

Goals for 2019

We are now 9 days into this new year and so far 2019 is going ok. The F4TF prompt this week is goals and ambitions for the year.

What are your goals, dreams, ambitions for 2019?

2018 was incredibly busy and my main hope is that this will be quieter, calmer and much more pleasant. I have a sense that this will be the case. We have plans to travel both at home and abroad and have booked a couple of trips. The first and most exciting will be a holiday in Cape Verde at the end of February. This will be our reward for getting through the traumas of the past few months.

Somehow I need to factor in finding some paid work and intend to set up a couple of meetings after our holiday to explore how that can be achieved. I plan to freelance and where possible work from home or wherever I am. A new 10 year health plan published by the government this week might help as there will be a need for people who can help to localise this.

Health and wellbeing will be a big factor for me this year. I need to lose weight ready for the breast reconstruction. This is slightly different from the general desire I have had for years but haven’t been able to sustain. My health scare has taught me that I need to be more mindful about what I put into my body. Recognising how much I love alcohol is important. After a week of dry January I am still craving wine at dinner, but feel pleased with myself for choosing water instead. I am finding other, non alcoholic drinks to try and haven’t resorted to Pepsi max once. I reintroduced sugar at Christmas and am now trying hard not to crave it again. These aren’t resolutions for the new year, but actual attempts to make lifestyle changes.

What, if anything, do you plan to try and change about your life? Why?

My focus is on myself, us and our relationship. The cancer diagnosis was a blessing in starting to make this happen. The test will be not to allow others to interfere or to allow myself to slip back to old ways.

There is very little that needs to change in terms of the way we live our life. Just to focus on making sure we achieve the things we want. Almost 7 years after starting this blog and I can at last say those things. All that is left is to get divorced and finalise any other legal things that are required.

Where do you see yourself in 12 months time?

For once in my life I am hoping for some status quo. Around this time next year I would expect to be preparing for surgery and then planning some great things for 2020. I can hardly believe that the century is nearly 20 years old and I am nearer 60 than 50. But strangely that feels less onerous than being 30 or 40 ever did.

Looking back at 2018

This year, more than most I can remember has been a time of immense highs and unbelievable lows. It has also been one of great change. For so long I talked about making those changes and there were many times that I thought they would never happen. This blogging year has also been one of highs and lows, a year where my writing has developed and grown but also one when I almost lost my blog. There is so much to write about this year and so many people to thank and mention so here goes.

January

The year started in a bit of a whirlwind as I supervised the packing and moving for my mum. There was over 30 years worth of stuff in her large 3 bedroom house. The concept of downsizing was completely alien to her and consequently this was a stressful time for me and my brothers. She tended to sit watching it happen, then complain when we threw things out she later said she wanted. On moving day, she took more furniture than it was physically possible to put into her bungalow. So more pain followed.

In the midst of all of that, it was difficult to find time to blog or be particularly sexy. As is often the case the memes (Wicked Wednesday, Sinful Sunday, Kink of the week and SoSS kept me going). This year I have learned that writing about something is better than not writing at all. This month too, I joined the Smut Marathon (more of that later).

February

This post pretty much highlights that sex and kink was a bit lacking in our lives at the beginning of the year. Not entirely surprising given the whirlwind of January. At that time we were also planning for me to move in with him and had begun to get the house ready. Once again meme’s kept the blog going including TMI Tuesday, Food for Thought Friday and Art Twist. Indie and I have discussed bringing the latter back to life and maybe we will do that in 2019. I only recently realised that Kilted Wookie runs F4TF and it took a while to realise also that we had all week to write a post based on the prompt. Sometimes I am pretty slow on the uptake!

At the end of the month, while away for a weekend I managed to delete my blog! I still shudder when I think about how it happened and the work required to put it back together. Thankfully Dom Signs was there to help, I am so grateful to him. The full horror story is here. 

March

This photo was taken hours before my blog went down and so didn’t appear until 3 March. It brings back the better memories of that weekend. In this post I write some more about the blog, but also for the first time about participating in the smut marathon as well as sex and coffee (all important things).

Our sex and kink life was at last on the up. In this Masturbation Monday post I describe some impulsive kinky sex and later in the month our first public play event. I haven’t contributed to Masturbation Monday as much as I would have liked to this year. Mainly because my sex blogging libido has been a little off kilter. But I did have the pleasure of meeting Kayla Lords and her husband John Brownstone at Eroticon. I followed John’s blog first and clearly remember the run up to Kayla moving to be with him which was so exciting. Together they have become quite a force to be reckoned with in the blogging (and podcasting) community.

Eroticon was a wonderful weekend of fun and laughter, plus some amazing sessions at the conference. Apart from Kayla and John we met so many other bloggers and writers that were previously words and pictures on a screen. Marie and Master T, May More, Posy, Eye, Cousin Pons to name but a few. I wrote about it here.

April

Once again I joined in with the Blogging A-Z challenge. Although there are 31 posts for April, which is getting on for a record I still had to combine some of the A-Z daily posts. Keeping with a mainly kink theme, the posts can be found here.

For the Wicked Wednesday post on Driving Lessons, I wrote about my rather unpleasant driving instructor. I guess this is my Me too incident; thankfully mild, though as you could tell it has stayed with me.

In April we travelled to Seville for the Feria celebrations and had a wonderful week of rest and recuperation. Seville is one of those places that we have pretty much seen and done but return to. The relaxed lifestyle, long lunches, dinners in several parts suits us.

May

By May, preparations for my move were in full swing. Our weekends were filled with decluttering, house maintenance and beginning to pack. However we did manage to find time for some fun and games. It had been a while since Master bought his girl a tail, but I hadn’t really had the chance to wear it. Until now.

The Smut Marathon moved onto round 5 and to my surprise I was still in the competition. As I mention in my post about round 4, my editing skills were coming under pressure. I tended to write pieces that were much longer than needed, sometimes 4 times as long. Since being out of the competition I have started to try to write stories that are already short and so need less editing. The Smut Marathon was a wonderful competition and I am grateful to Rebel for all her hard work in making it the success it was and will be again.

June

Hy from A Dissolute Life Means challenged herself and others to Post Every Damn Day in June. I got off to a good start even though at the time I was on holiday in Slovenia. Much of the country is under developed, with beautiful lakes, hills and mountains to explore. A great opportunity for some natural photo opportunities. While away I participated for the first time in Hyacinth’s regular meme: Boobday. I look at my contribution with some sadness as this is the boob I no longer have. The cancer was already growing inside me, though I didn’t know it. I do hope to participate again soon, but more of that in the post I am going to write about the coming year.

There was one final trip away (for a weekend) before the end of June, providing a great Sinful Sunday opportunity. After that, life was crazy as we prepared for my move.

July

The weather was wonderfully hot. A proper English heatwave. Probably not what you need when you are spending much of your life packing boxes. On one of the last weekends spent before the move, we frolicked in the garden. Not only did I run around naked but we also had anal sex out there. My anxiety about the neighbours seeing anything dissipated under the influence of a bottle or two of wine.

The rest of July is a mad blur. I didn’t post anything of substance until 26th. After the antics in the garden I developed a urinary infection (perhaps the two are linked) and needed antibiotics. Then as soon as I was recovered I moved house. I wrote about it all here. To be honest, I was pretty glad to see the back of July.

August

August was about finishing up at work. Luckily, with many people away on holiday the roads and railways were quiet, though London was as usual busy. There were few meetings so I was able to declutter my work environment in a reasonably calm way. I had a wonderful send off from colleagues and left on 31st. I also started to reorganise my blog a little, ending one journey page and starting another.

As we gradually settled into our life together we began to rekindle our kinky sides and also had some fun.

September

During my first week of freedom from work we travelled to France. I was to put it mildly, exhausted. A short weekend break extended to almost a week and the fact we could do that was the most liberating thing.

All through August I was waiting for the inevitable. I revealed at my mammogram early in the month that I had found a lump in my breast and knew I would be recalled. The first date I was given was for 31st August, but as this was my final day at work I asked for a later appointment. So on 11th September Master and I spent the entire afternoon at a one stop breast clinic. We came away already knowing that cancer was suspected, but had to wait a week for confirmation. The following day I travelled to Cyprus with my mum with a massive plaster on my boob. Over the coming days a huge bruise formed.

Cyprus was beautiful though. Hot sunny days and warm evenings. Even my mum and my attempts to hide my bruising didn’t spoil it. But I really did miss Master and wrote about my longing for him here.

On my return I received the news that we had been both expecting and dreading. I had breast cancer.

October

I think we saw the inside of more hospital wards and departments than I experienced in the first 3 months of my nursing career. Master was beside me the whole way and has been my rock and guiding light ever since the first appointment. Our hopes of a lumpectomy were dashed as the tumour was too large. So on 15th I had a mastectomy.

Many blog and twitter friends and followers have congratulated me on my positivity in coping with the surgery and aftermath. While I wanted to catalogue my journey and will continue to do so, I didn’t seek to make it seem easy. The operation was straightforward, but the recovery painful and frustration. I wasn’t the best patient, I don’t think nurses usually are. But I was determined not to succumb to self pity and so I guess that is why it came across that way. I started a series of regular posts about my recovery which will continue for as long as necessary.

November

I felt ready on 11th November to give Sinful Sunday followers a glimpse of my new body. I always knew that I was part of a body positive group of people but have been overwhelmed by the support. None more so than from Molly and that is why I chose Sinful Sunday for this post. Being able to go to the munch that Molly and Signs run and speak openly to others including Sub Bee has really helped. I am looking forward to getting together with Molly in the new year so she can photograph me lots more.

Thank you to everyone who has commented on here, sent me emails and messages on twitter. I know too that Master has found the support from this community to be a really positive thing.

December

A month of end of year lists and reviews, and I find myself on so many. After everything that has happened this year, I am overwhelmed. Looking back over my blog, I can see that it has been a good year for my writing.

Thank you to those who nominated me for the Kinkly and Chaturbate top sex blog lists. Thank you to May More for the wonderful messages of support and for including me on her Top of the Blogs list. To Floss, who named me as one of her top 20 Lovelies. To Kilted Wookie for putting me on the Naughty List, to Master Venture for including me on his list of people worth following and to Marie Rebelle for including me on her Top 20 of ’18. I am incredibly honoured to have been recognised by so many of the wonderful people I admire in this community.

Thank you to everyone who has read my blog this year and to those who have commented and supported me. Here’s to 2019 – more of that to come.