My head hung low, I kneel down in front of him and whisper my confession.
His hand is on my back, gently rubbing, and he runs his hand through my hair.
"I'm disappointed to hear that," he says softly. He asks me a few questions, and I know he's trying to get a feel for what really happened. Did I do it on purpose? Was it as bad as I said it was? Could someone really have gotten hurt?
No, it wasn't on purpose, but yes, it was as bad as I said it was.
"Spanking tonight, when the kids go to bed."
My heart sinks.
But I'm proud of him, too. He doesn't want to punish me. He much prefers to be lenient and merciful, but he knows when I need mercy and when I need a spanking.
And tonight, even I know I need a spanking.
It was an accident. But someone could've gotten seriously hurt, and rules are there for a reason.
I put my head on his chest and he strokes my hair. "I wish you didn't have to wait," he says softly. "I know how hard that is for you. But there's no way around it."
He's right. There isn't. We have no privacy. But I appreciate his concern.
He knows how badly I feel. My face was buried in his lap when I whispered my confession.
I didn't want to tell him. I stood for a few minutes, after I realized my mistake. It had been a long time since I'd been punished. I didn't want to be punished. I stood alone, taking deep breaths, dreading having to tell him, and when I went in to him he smiled widely and put his arms out to me, and I almost lost my courage.
But I have to tell him. How can he trust me to be honest if I don't tell him? How can he help me if I don't tell him? How can I trust myself to him if I don't tell him?
Finally, the time comes. I'm dressed for bed, curled up in my corner of the bed, as I wait for him. I hear the implement drawer open, and my heartbeat accelerates, and he says, "Come on, now. Let's get this over with."
I drag myself over to him and wordlessly strip.
Sometimes he removes my clothes. I much prefer when he does. I see it as a very loving gesture. But sometimes he makes me do it and I obey him, a humbling acceptance of my punishment.
"Lay over my lap."
I lay myself across his lap. I'm so thankful he lets me do that tonight. I feel terrible, guilty, and so sorry for what I've done. I want to feel him when he spanks me. I can feel his thighs beneath me, and his hand, firm and steady, around my waist, while the other holds the dreaded implement.
"Why am I spanking you?" he asks softly. I tell him.
"Yes," he responds. "I know how badly you feel. And I know you'll never do this again."
"I won't," I murmur into the pillow. "I'm so sorry."
Without another word, the first swat lands, and it hurts like hell, and I yell into the pillow and try to move, but he holds me fast.
An immediate flood of emotion hits me. It's so different than when he spanks me for stress relief, or to turn me on, or just because I need it. When he spanks me then, the first thing I feel is relief, like I can breathe easier. I can sigh into the pillow, even if it's a hard spanking.
But it's not like that with punishment. I feel different things. I feel my guilt surface, and as he spanks me I'm reminded of my trust in him, and when he pauses and speaks gently to me, I feel grateful that he loves me enough to help make me a better person, to help us have closure on the mistakes I've made, to help us stay close with nothing in between us.
These are all just the feelings I get, that I process through, that surge and flow as I'm disciplined. I don't think much more than He loves you and breathe and sometimes Oh God I hope he's almost done.
Swat after swat after swat he lands, and it hurts so badly, but it's what I need, and he knows it.
Finally, he's done. It's not the easiest I've ever had, but it's far from the worst. He puts the implement back in the drawer, and I can't relax yet, because I don't know if he's done, maybe reaching for another implement or going for his belt, so I ask him. "Are you done?"
"All done," he says softly, as his hand is on me, rubbing the sting away. "That stings, huh?"
I nod, and gulp, still across his lap, as my tears start flowing now. "Yes," I say in a shaky whisper. But we both know it's what I needed.
He's massaging me now, as he always does. I told him once that some people don't believe it massaging after a spanking, but he says he does. He wants to help the sting go away. He doesn't want me to bruise. And I love that he does, because it makes me feel cared for. Forgiven. He wouldn't be so tender with me, if he didn't love me.
It's his way. His gentle dominance. The stern, serious look he gives me, coupled with his calm, steady voice. The way he says quietly, "Don't speak to me that way," in the tone that must be obeyed, but never raises his voice to me. The way he puts a finger under my chin and makes me look in his eyes. The way he says firmly, "No. It isn't what's best for you, so my answer is no." The way he holds me after he spanks me, and tells me he loves me, and soothes me when I cry.
The way he tells me "I spank you because I love you."
He is dominant. There is no question. He spanks me when I need it. I've been hauled over his lap and paddled soundly for doing something dangerous or disobedient. I've been firmly lectured and strapped for defying him. Not only is he dominant, he can be strict and it's a good thing he is, because I can be heedless, and defiant, and selfish and stubborn. But I'm learning. He's helping me learn.
I've tried so many times to talk my way out of a punishment and he will not allow it. He knows I need it, and he knows it's for my own good, so he sticks by his guns.
But he tempers it. And I love that he does that for me.
It's the best of both worlds, really.
It's what I've wanted all along. The certainty and dependability of his leadership, and protection, and firm but loving correction, but always fair, always kind, always mindful of my emotions, and my fears, and my needs.
It's that perfect combination of stern and tender.
It's what makes me feel safe, and cherished, and loved.