Posts Tagged ‘anniversary’

Two years with Rife

September 17, 2013  |  journal entries  |  8 Comments

When I think about the past two years, and trying to put some sort of something together to explain how it’s been, I think in photographs. That one where he’s picking raspberries with his bare hands, crouched in his brown tee shirt, raspberry juice running down his wrists, pink staining his tongue. The one where he and his dog are surveying the moonscape of northern Yukon right before we turned past the “Welcome to Alaska!” sign. The one he called “doing important boy work” where he was sitting in a jock strap and nothing else on the porch at the ranch writing in his leather boy journal, writing reflections on tasks for me or writing about feelings of service and submission or writing a book report, I don’t know what the task was, but I’m sure it was important. The one with his dimples in that orange-red light that I looked at over and over before I really knew him.

I’d put together a collage post, an essay in photographs, but that doesn’t feel good enough, because who knows what you’d see. Maybe you’d see what I see, all the sweet boy tasks and dimpled smiles and creating art, but you wouldn’t see so many of the other things: the quiet contemplation, the complexities, the intensity of inner landscape, the artistry, the precision, the majesty.

It’s not easy, this intimate loving. I don’t know how it could ever be easy. It’s a practice of stripping away blocks, stripping away defenses, reminding myself over and over to let in, take in, open up, drop that protective layer. What a horrible thing to do, and how beautiful. What else is there, really, than to let someone see who I am as true as I possibly can.

This is my best truth, I whisper to him over and over, with each breath, while I sleep, while my lips touch his fingertips, while my key fits his lock. Right now, I am ruined. Right now, I am running. Right now, I am ruminating. Right now, I am rubber bouncing away. Right now, I am rumbling. Right now, I am rushed. Right now, I am a ruby shining. Right now, I am rusted through and I fear one touch will crumble everything. Right now, I just need you to hold me, take your hand and put it there, hold me from inside.

I have loved enough to know not to make grand declarations while I fall. I know I have said the same things, again and again. Falling always feels like that: brand new, awakened, like nothing else ever before. And it’s true. This time, it’s green green in all her shades, babygreen and lime and chartreuse, fresh mown grass, pine and spruce, fern and jungle, tea and olive, so many options. Let’s spend the life of our relationship cataloguing all of the hues and saturations, all of the chroma and light, every kind of value there may be. Let’s memorize the hex and RGB codes and recite them in each other’s ears when we need to remember the secret language in which we speak. This green that is growth and renewal, from budding seed to moss covering the old growth. Every stage, none more valuable than the other. None needing to be hidden. No forest does their mourning in silence, hidden away in holes or caves. Trees fall out in the open, unapologetic. This is my direction. I will now lay down to rest. We heard that great snap on the outer point trail and both looked to the canopy: which one would it be? The clear sound of tree death echoed, but it took a moment before falling. Like a ball bouncing tall tall tall and then less and less until the sound waterfalls. The tree was a waterfall as it descended, mortal, unrooted.

This is what happens. Unrooted I descend, mortal, and no one to be worshipped. And yet he does it anyway. So devoted, he whispers, and I whisper it right back. My noblesse oblige, my responsibilities, the placement in his life I continue to earn daily as I am to be and act from my best self. The deepest of forest greens. Living with him seems small compared to owning him.

I don’t know why I crave the power I do, nor does he know why he craves the submission he does. We puzzle, we theorize, we study, we muse. And we give to each other in these ways that we have always craved. Something in me didn’t know what I wanted was to own, to master. The verb, the job title—not the honorific, not yet (maybe that will come later). But as I study this path, I realize I’ve always been on it. Always been trying to encourage something more, and making do with my own limitations.

I’ve been making offerings my whole life, holding up gifts, looking at paths and asking if they wanted to walk it with me. This is the boy who has taken my hand and said yes. This is the boy who showed me paths he’s discovered, too, but had not yet walked, knowing the essentiality of having another with him. This is the boy who has been offering, over and over, to take more if they wanted it. I want more. I want the edge. I seek the razor on which we can both balance. I seek the calling to be my own best self. I seek one who will stay at my feet not because it serves him, but because it serves me. That is a fine line of difference, but makes everything change.

Right now, I am shining in the oldest forest, crackling descent to the earth, digging up rubies. Doesn’t green shine brighter when there’s red around? Isn’t my heart just oh so ready to pour this blood into the earth? Isn’t there so much more to love than heartbreak? Isn’t there so much possibility, when puzzle pieces find each other? Aren’t we so ready, so prepared and ready, to live our way to the answers, live our way to the creations of our quiet, deepest callings?

I don’t know what happens next. But I know this is the beginning of year three, and I’m listening. I choose.

Seven years ago, I started this project named Sugarbutch

May 1, 2013  |  journal entries, miscellany  |  6 Comments

the very first Sugarbutch avatar

the very first Sugarbutch avatar

Once upon a time, I was struggling to become a butch. My first girlfriend called me “Sugarbutch” and it stuck. Though my college girlfriend and I talked the talk of gender and sexuality, we were stuck in lesbian bed death—not that lesbians own bed death, exactly, any couple of any gender or sexuality can go through spells or years of time where they aren’t having sex, but lesbians have a particular corner on that market. (I have some theories about that, for another time.)

We were together four years, and had sex six times in the last two years. Six times! I counted! I was going crazy, tearing my hair out with desire and want, getting off in secret and feeling guilty, feeling depressed and anxious and unmotivated. I wasn’t writing. I couldn’t write anything without writing I want out of this relationship but I wasn’t ready to face that. I couldn’t get sex off my mind. So I decided that anytime I wanted to have sex, I would either go to the gym, or I would write erotica.

… So of course I wrote a lot of erotica (and didn’t really go to the gym). At first, the writings were all what I wished we’d done, what I was daydreaming about.

avatarYou did this little twist with your hips this morning that made me want to press you to the wall, hard, and take you right then.” … “Mouth open eyes closed, fingers pinching your nipples, working every lingering inch of me inside you. It didn’t really happen this way but it could have.” … “I can’t even hold a conversation with you anymore because every word in my mouth is clouded with why are we not kissing right now?

I started writing things, sentences, syntax that I actually kind of liked. And as I started breaking through, I started discovering what was inside the block: a deep unknowing—on both of our parts.

I was struggling to become butch, but I was also struggling to become myself.

So I did what I knew to do with writing I kind of liked and was afraid to own: I put it online. I wanted to study myself, more than anything else: to study sexualities, genders, and relationships. To make a graduate study of these things, to read all the books and read all the blogs and listen to all the podcasts and ask all the facilitators I could find what their best philosophies are for these tricky topics. It became a sanctuary, a writing prompt every day, a practice, a deepening of what I knew about myself and how to be me in the world.

It has been a personal study. This place has been the place where I’ve become me.

with Rachel Kramer Bussel during the Sex Bloggers Calendar photo shoot, 2008. first time I showed my face online

with Rachel Kramer Bussel during the Sex Bloggers Calendar photo shoot, 2008. first time I showed my face online

Of course, my college girlfriend (here known as “The Ex”) and I broke up. When I started writing and telling the truth to myself again, I couldn’t stay. It was a mess. I didn’t know how to leave. I didn’t know that not having good sex in a monogamous relationship was enough of a reason to leave, but I now do believe it is. I fell in love, hard, and got burned. I started healing, and grieving. I dated and explored and studied, I wrote and wrote, I started teaching. I fell in love again. There’s a lot more to all of those stories, but you can mostly read those for yourselves in the archives.

Somewhere along there, I started asking myself: “Now that I got everyone’s attention, what do I have to say?

I’ve been puzzling through that, trying desperately to make a living to enable me to keep doing my work these past few years, which is part of why you haven’t heard as much from me. I’ve been trying to come into integrity, into integration, bringing who I am offline together with the vision of myself I came to know through words. I’ve been struggling to create myself a life I can settle into, one that is sustainable, that can last, that can feed me and carry me into the work that I know I have to do in the world.

I haven’t figured that out entirely, yet, but I am getting closer. My life has been radically restructured in the past year, and I need some retreat and some quiet and some inner work so I can feel into what the new mission of my work is here beyond my own personal liberation. Telling my own story has been and will continue to be an important part of it, but there is more to it than that. I seek structure and vision in a bigger way, and I don’t quite know what that means yet, but I can feel that I’ve been moving steadily toward it.

Thank you for reading. Thank you for all of your comments and support. Thank you for your emails (even when I don’t have time to write back as thoroughly as I’d like). Thank you for coming to my workshops and buying my books. Thank you.

I love my job.

7thbirthdaySome of the other anniversary posts:

(The anniversary of Sugarbutch starting was Monday, April 29th, but that was my first day after a long 6-day training and the day before I left for a two-day trip to Madison, Wisconsin, so it took me a few days to get to it. Now I’m hitting “publish” from an airplane 30,000 feet up, zooming back to the Bay Area. We live in the future.)

One Year with Rife

November 27, 2012  |  journal entries  |  3 Comments

There have been so many things going on with Kristen for the last few months, and I’ve been doing so much traveling, that I haven’t quite had the time or focus to put this up, but I’ve meant to since September.

In September, Rife and I celebrated one year together.

  

 

Clockwise from top: Picking raspberries near Summer Camp in September; surviving the Fusion hurricane at Ramblewood in the barn; playing guitar in the hammock at Summer Camp; looking at jacaranda flowers in LA in May; one of the first shots he sent me in January of this year when I told him I took boxing lessons.

We now have a formal contract about our D/s and power dynamics, and I’ve been really enjoying how that has pushed me as a Dominant to keep exploring, to get in touch with what I want, what would feel good for me, what I may need at any given moment, which, as much as it may seem like being the top or dom or daddy forces me to be in touch with that, it’s really easy for me to get caught up in being more of a service top, doing things for the other person, doing things I know they like, focusing on them and their pleasure. Especially because I still identify pretty strongly as stone.

He and I have seen each other almost a dozen times in the last year—our visit for our anniversary at Summer Camp in September was #10, and this visit in Houston is #11. Things keep deepening in beautiful ways, and he and Kristen are friends and metamours, and I feel incredibly lucky and blessed. He’s added so much to my life and sense of self and my style of topping and dominanting, and he’s so much fun to play with, so easy to be around.

As much as it is incredibly difficult to be in an open relationship, I don’t know if I could close it again and be monogamous—at least, not at this point in my life—and I’m so grateful to be exploring with both Kristen and Rife. This summer and fall have been incredibly difficult for me emotionally, and they have both been so important as I’m trying to navigate these surges of emotions and difficult readjustments in my family of origin. I’m trying to keep bringing my love and compassion back to Kristen, too, as she keeps deepening and exploring with other people. I’m so grateful to have survived this past year, to have learned all that I’ve learned, to be moving through it deeper.

And I’m so grateful to have this sexy leatherboy submissive creature who does things like bend a coat hanger into a long U shape or strip the thorns off of a branch and then put them into my hands and say, “please.”

Happy anniversary, my sweet boy. I’m very excited to see what our second year will bring.

Protected: Third Anniversary (Bonus Photo)

December 13, 2011  |  journal entries  |  Enter your password to view comments.

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Happy Third Anniversary, Kristen

December 13, 2011  |  journal entries  |  5 Comments

Today is my third anniversary with Kristen.

Photo by Stacie Joy, September 2011

(Here’s the story of how we met (which I told on our first anniversary), our first date (which is the second most viewed post on Sugarbutch), second anniversary and what I got her, and what she bought me. I think there was a dirty story about last year’s anniversary (how could there not be, given what she was wearing) but I can’t seem to find it, I think I wrote it up later.)

I’m a little bit at a loss for words. I didn’t expect us to build this life together, to wrap around each other like we have. To be honest, I expected us to have a one night stand. But as Dan Savage says, sometimes partners are the one night stands who stay.

We knew from the beginning that we are sexually compatible, and that was certainly a very high priority for finding someone to build a life with. That we were long distance for six months meant that I had a chance to adjust my flight responses, to get used to the idea of being with someone again, after being skittish and afraid to get deeply intimate.

But it wasn’t scary with her. And in the three years since, I’ve grown and pushed myself and changed and made all sorts of progress with who I am, how I relate to the world, and where I’m going. I really think we’re more than the sum of our parts, more than just the two of us together, we are also this “us” that combines to strengthen and enliven each of us individually, too.

She’s so willing and eager to communicate, to grow, to change, and to integrate new information, and just that alone has been such a significant difference from any of my past relationships. We go together so well, with complimentary interests and overlapping values and similar ways of seeing the world. That’s not to say it hasn’t been hard, but we’ve been working so well on the things that have been a challenge, and we’ve made some serious, hard-won progress this year. The last few months have been particularly hard, but I think we’ve made it over that bump and I am really excited about where we’re going. I am significantly committed to keeping my sex life vibrant (I mistyped “vibrating”—that too) in something long term, and so is she, so lately we’ve been negotiating just how to have an experimental, fun, and dirty sex life while still navigating all the domestic things of sharing our day-to-day lives and an apartment and our daily stresses.

We keep coming together stronger and more loving than ever before, and it just keeps deepening, improving, getting better—our communication, our connection, and our sex.

Photo by Stacie Joy, September 2011

I love you, Kristen. Thanks for being on this incredible journey with me. I cherish every minute.

Photos were taken by Stacie Joy at Dark Odyssey this year. Thanks Stacie!

Happy 5th Anniversary, Sugarbutch! And: Ask Me Anything

April 29, 2011  |  advice, miscellany  |  25 Comments

Charles Demuth, The Figure 5 in Gold

Today is Sugarbutch’s 5th anniversary—I started this little personal online writing project five years ago, on April 29, 2006.

Oh so much has changed since then!

Though while I’m going back to see what I wrote last year, for the 4th anniversary, I’m still on that same path as I was then. Though my columns at CarnalNation.com and SexIs have ended, I’m still writing for AfterEllen.com, the Lambda Literary Foundation, and Good Vibes Magazine. I’m still keeping up with MrSexsmith.com for my speaking gigs, travels, and tracking my guest posts and interviews elsewhere, and still playing with Tumblr, Twitter, Facebook, and other social media. I’m trying to figure out what it is I’m trying to build, and where I’m going, but I have some ideas and things are coming together, I think. I’m still writing about my main relationship and the turmoils—and thrilling joys—of constant intimacy.

The biggest news, perhaps, is that I’m editing a book of lesbian BDSM erotica for Cleis Press, which I am thrilled about. Actually, that manuscript is due this weekend, so I have officially declared today “Smut Day,” because I’m editing and compiling and putting all the last minute details together.

I woke up wondering whether Cleis includes a dedication standard in their book, so I flipped through some books from my smut library to see what I could find.

my (abridged) smut library

(You’ll just have to buy the book to see whether I am able to include one or not.)

I’m really enjoying this erotica anthology editing process, and I think the collection is going to be fantastic. I can’t wait to share the final product with you all! I don’t have a publication date yet, but you will be the first to know as soon as I do. I hope to do more of these, but I don’t want to get ahead of myself—this one isn’t even done yet. (Getting closer!)

I’ve got some other things in the works, but I’m mostly just focused on writing columns elsewhere online doing some more editing, and traveling to do workshops and speak. I’ve got some exciting gigs coming up this summer!

And now, on to the Sugarbutch anniversary tradition: Ask Me Anything.

I get a lot of emails asking for advice or help or clarification or what my opinion is on something, and though I’ve never formally written an advice column (though I would be interested in doing so—anybody want to hire me for that?), I have kept up this “ask me anything” tradition for a few years now, so perhaps that’s where y’all get the idea to email me questions. I always put those emails in a special folder that I swear I will get to, when I have time, but y’all, I never have time. I’m sorry. I feel bad not replying to your personal crises, and sometimes I write back to say “I’m sorry I can’t answer this,” but there are only so many hours in the day and any of those extra ones I would like to spend kissing my beautiful girlfriend rather than answering even more emails.

This is why I do not have an “ask me anything” on tumblr. They are very time consuming.

But! This is your opportunity! Got a question you crave to hear my advice about? Did you email me and I never answered (sorry)? Here’s the deal. Leave a comment on this post and ask me whatever you like. You can ask anything, from personal details about my life that you’ve always wondered, to questions about advice for sex toys or your relationship, to philosophical musings on identity, gender, or sexuality theory. The shorter and more specific the question, the better.

I will answer every single question asked by the end of May. That is my vow to you, especially since last year they dragged on and I didn’t answer them until the end of October. Read back on some of the former “ask me anything” questions if you like.

Apparently the 5th anniversary tradition is wood, so, well, try not to make too many jokes about that.

So go ahead—what do you want to know? What are you curious to read my thoughts about? What have you always wondered? What kind of dirty things will you get me to reveal?

Anniversary Cufflinks

December 14, 2010  |  journal entries  |  1 Comment

These are the “sugar daddy” cufflinks Kristen gave me, which I will most definitely be wearing at Sideshow tonight!

Happy 4th Anniversary, Sugarbutch!

April 29, 2010  |  miscellany  |  18 Comments

Today, April 29th 2010, marks the fourth anniversary of beginning Sugarbutch! I’ve been going at this site nearly daily for four years straight, and it’s the first anniversary where I am not working at another job; Sugarbutch is my full-time job.

This past year, I’ve written 231 posts, received 2,798 comments, added one category for a total of 37, and added 1,267 tags. I’m kind of tag-happy these days. They’re a sort of footnote.

I’ve also started writing many other places, including the Radical Masculinity column at Carnal Nation, my Mr. Sexsmith’s Other Girlfriend column on New York City for Eden Fantasys’s magazine Sex Is, and I even had a piece over on After Ellen this past week. I’ve started a reading series, with Cheryl B., called Sideshow! The Queer Literary Carnival, and I’ve been teaching workshops and classes more frequently. I’m keeping track of all of those things over on MrSexsmith.com, rather than here, so if you’re interested in where I’m performing or where else my work is appearing, subscribe to that RSS feed. I’ve also started keeping media (video, audio, and photographs, mostly) over on my mrsexsmith.Tumblr.com, which has freed up this space a little more for in-depth writing.

I have some more projects in the works for the near future! Stay tuned.

I have always reflected back on this very first post when I do these anniversary posts, and as many of you are new readers these days, here’s an excerpt from my very first post, bed death, standard variety:

What I’m trying to say is this: I’m not getting the sex that I want. No, scratch that: I’m not getting the sex that I need. My basic human needs, basic woman needs, basic self needs, include sex. If asked, I would say at least three times a week, though I can be a little flexible about that. I understand, having had some experience as a couple, that that can’t always happen. But I also know that it can, and does, when both people make the effort.

I’ve been with my girlfriend for three years. We met in college, in a Men & Masculinity class. It took another couple of quarters for us to get together; we had a slow start, easing into each other and into a relationship, which was wonderful. One of the great things about our relationship is how well we have been able to keep our autonomy – we never became one of those couples that you never see without the other person, we aren’t joined at the hip, we don’t constantly speak in first-person-plural. Of course, the greatest strength is often the greatest weakness, and in our case, the intimacy has fallen out of our relationship almost entirely.

We haven’t had sex in … longer than I care to admit. And in the last two years we have probably had sex five times. I stopped counting the days between.

I’m surprised at how clear that is, when I look back at it. It feels like such a murky, confused time, but I lay it out so clearly: I’m not getting the sex I need. I still believe sex is a basic human need, perhaps not for survival on the food-water-shelter level, but on the hierarchy of needs scale, certainly. It is something we need in order to feel psychologically safe, protected, comforted. Well, maybe saying “sex” is too broad. We don’t actually all need sex. I need sex, I need hot dirty queer kinky sex, but perhaps you need pretty music playing candles lit sex. Perhaps you are totally satisfied with the once-a-month quickie. Perhaps you’re asexual, and need companionship, partnership, friendship, intimacy in other ways.

That post is under password protection now, as is most of the things about my exes and personal life. If you want the password, join the (very very rarely occasional) mailing list, and it’ll be sent to you when you confirm your subscription.

The traditional gift for the fourth anniversary is fruit, flowers, and books, or, I’m told, the modern equivalent is electrical appliances. Umwhat? People don’t need fruit, flowers, or books anymore? Those seem way more important than electrical appliances. I mean, I like the next tech gadget as much as anybody (though I think I’ll buy stock instead of the iPad, even though I’m really coveting it currently), but it’s almost summer! I can’t wait for strawberry shortcake.

On Sugarbutch’s second anniversary, I reflected on where this blog started and began the tradition of “ask me anything,” which I did last year also. So, in the spirit of keeping up with traditions, let’s do it again: Got a question for me? Ask me anything. You can ask anything, from personal details about my life that you’ve always wondered, to questions about advice for sex toys or your relationship, to philosophical musings on identity, gender, or sexuality theory.

Read back on some of the former “ask me anything” questions, and add your own in the comments. What do you want to know? I’ll answer as many as I can.

The Sugarbutch Birthday Tradition

April 2, 2010  |  miscellany  |  6 Comments

April 3rd is my birthday, I’m turning 31 tomorrow. I love being in my thirties (fuck those who-am-I finding-myself-bullshit twenties, I’m so ready to be solidly where I’m at). April is also Sugarbutch’s birthday month, I started this site 4 years ago on the 29th. Will have a giveaway or something exciting later this month for that.

Did you flip your 2010 Sex Blogger Calendar to my pinup photo with Audacia Ray yet? I bet there are still calendars to purchase, if you don’t have one yet. WORTH IT, if not only for the blogiversaries and birthdays of your favorite sex bloggers and the sexy photos, then for the discount codes to the best of the best online sex shops!

And those of you who have been following for a while will remember: in the past few years, I have requested for you to send in photos of your most fabulous shoes as a birthday card, if you feel so inspired. “Your most fabulous shoes” can mean anything, the ribbons-around-the-ankles are not required (though oh so hot, gahh). I am really quite partial to the ones that lace up and tie and wrap around, probably it’s a bondage related thing, I’m not quite sure why they are SO DAMN HOT but they just are. Strappy sandals are also awesome. The smaller and more delicate, the better. Mmmmmm.


J. from Toronto, one of my favorites from last year.


Missy, my favorite from 2008.

Oh, and don’t forget the birthday coloring page from Illustrocity!

I’ll post my favorites, with your permission of course. (If you prefer I don’t post them, please let me know.) Send them to or post them on your own blog and leave a comment, so I can be sure to see them & link!

Kristen and I have some birthday plans this weekend, including New York City’s best bloody mary, swing dancing, some small birthday adventures, and drinks with friends. I did have daydreams of getting 30 blowjobs for my 30th birthday, last year, but that didn’t really happen. I should come up with something fun I can request from her this year, though I’m not quite sure what it will be (she does so much for me already!). Suggestions?