Sunday, January 22, 2012

A Creature of Extremes?

Sometimes I think that I am at my best only during extremes.

Extreme pain, pleasure, joy, trauma, sadness...The moments of life's ultimate madness...In those instances I am often my best.

It's the afterwards and before that I fall flat. The mundane issues are the ones I struggle to accept.

Death, birth, junkies, accidents, all those things we hope don't spend too much time in our life?

Those dealings are the instances where I feel like I fulfill my potential.

Screaming children, bills, petty family arguments, broken stoves, those are the things that stop me up short.

Maybe that is one of the reasons I am so attracted to ttwd--that need for extremes and my inability to hold the middle ground? Because I do better swimming in the deep.

It's not that I don't enjoy the quiet times, those simple sweet little pleasures that life offers, the gentler moments of existence...Because I do. They soften the experience of being human and bring a depth of joy that is found only in the little things.

But I also thrive in blood, sweat, tears, and the kind of joys that light up a night sky.

When the darkness is deep enough to drown in and the light bright enough to blind, those seem to be my times.

Perhaps I am simply a creature of extremes.


  1. I love the way you express this - "I do better swimming in the deep" - and I think you have definitely hit on something here. I understand completely what you mean. Intensity and extremes - it is why we are drawn to D/s.

    1. Alice,
      Thank you. Extremes are very much a double edged sword, but there is something to e said for the experience that comes with them.

  2. Yep, I agree with the creature of extremes. Mundane is just too boring to be bothered with. Though it might be easier then the extremes, not nearly as satisfying.

    1. faerie,
      well, mundane is probably much easier! I have often wondered if the whole "all or nothing" bit is really the hard road lol.

  3. You are not alone, lil. Life wouldn't be as meaningful without feeling it so deeply, in all its nuances.

    love, squirrel

    1. squirrel,
      Very true--intensity brings meaning with it.

  4. i'm back reading this a third or a fourth time now... still pondering. For me, it's easier to be at the extremes. I found myself thinking ~ the extremes create heros, managing the middle ground is for saints.

    For sure, in the lifestyle, i think we like to be on the edge.

    “I want to stand as close to the edge as I can without going over. Out on the edge you see all the kinds of things you can't see from the center.”
    ― Kurt Vonnegut

    Thanks for a thought-provoking post.


    1. aisha,
      I have to say, I think you have something when you say the middle ground is for saints. It really is far easier to function at the extremes.
      Though as faerie said, mundane is probably the easiest path lol.

      And you are like this awesome fountain of quotes!

  5. Your post reminds of the words from Leonard Cohen...

    "I'm good at love, I'm good at hate, it's in-between I freeze"

    I know exactly what you mean. Good post.

    ~The Rose~

  6. lil,

    i have been trying for days to post a comment to your page. Infact i thought i was successful earlier, but it too seems to have disapeared. i've decided to try one more time. Let's see if it works this time.

    A long time ago a Dom told me that i was "addicted to intensity." i think this might be similiar to your "extremes." At the time i didn't really know what to do with that information, but the more i thought about it, the more it seemed accurate. i wasn't sure if it was a good or bad thing?

    i've since learned a bit about the brain and know that it is "pattern seeking." Meaning it looks for situations that it is familiar with. It gets used to certain types of situations and feels most comfortable when in those situations.

    Not a bad thing, however, sometimes my brain might cause me to subconsciously create these types of situations. So, in my case i would create intense, or dramatic, or even chaotic, situations that were not necessarily positive moments in my life.

    i've learned that i leaned toward the "dramatic" and would create drama therefore feeding my need of intense situations, at work, at home, in my personal life. If the day was a "boring" day, suddenly i would figure out some emotional crisis to fill my time. (not purposefully, and this is all in hindsight).

    With help from a stable Dom, consistency and discipline, i began to understand the importance of "calm" of "relaxing" of "contentedness".

    Finding the balance i think was key for me, it was frustrating to be unsatisfied when life wasn't "exciting."

    i'm not sure my thoughts even apply to you, but it sure hit home when i read your words and i just felt compelled to share.

    As always thank you for your thoughtful and well written post, i always enjoy how thought provoking your posts are!

  7. Wow! You do have this ability to get me thinking :) I am full speed ahead when surrounded by chaos, where I suppose I sometimes feel most alive and most of the time having created that chaos myself! I lack motivation sometimes with the mundane. I think Jennie Bear's comment was very insightful too :)

    Dee x

  8. It has taken me a few days to comment as well - there's how i think i should be or want to see myself -as exciting and interesting, etc.; vs. how i realize i really am, fairly uninteresting really. My childhood was all extremes and drama and crisis, not in a good way. I worked hard to be able to live in the middle ground - whether you call that balanced or mundane - i perceive it as both at different times. I don't live at the extremes - until i do, then all hell breaks loose. Depending on my self esteem on any given day i think if myself and my life as either well adjusted and even keel - or just incredibly boring.

    I absolutely believe that bdsm and our interactions now in that way fill a huge need for me. It's a safe, intimate, connecting way to experience the intensity, the depth of feeling - both physical and emotional, and the extremes that tend not to be part of my everyday life. Containment sometimes comes into it for me, but often it's more of a push or a driving force.

    thanks for a post that made me really lok at myself.

  9. Isn't it odd how sometimes we find our best in what othrs would sometimes consider the worst? I dabble in extremes but I wouldn't say I function my best in them. All the more powr to you for having the strength to do so.

  10. Could be. Some people just need pressure to be motivated. They are kind of like hidden thrill seekers. It's ok as long as you can make the other times work and the extreme times don't go to dangerous extremes.


  11. The Rose,
    great quote. Thank you!

    jenni bear,
    I have changed the comment format, so hopefully the commenting issue is resolved.
    It's interesting to me that a fair amount of commenters tend to associate trauma with drama--whereas I see them as separate and very different experiences.
    I try to avoid people and situations that ring drama into life. For me, the solution has been to simply avoid people. It can be a it lonely, but it cuts out a massive amount of drama and angst.
    So in short, I do try to keep the negative intensities at bay, but shit happens and when it does it's usually unavoidable.
    I do not always like or enjoy intensity, but I do feel like that is when I am most competent and successful.

    Dee, thinking is dangerous!

    gg, I don't feel like drama is something that I want or enjoy in my life in the least. And crisis and trauma? Well, they aren't fun. But I often feel most successful and accomplished when I'm dealing with those kind of things.
    Taking when my dad died for instance--it really was terrible and painful and heartbreaking. But it was also one of those wondrous experiences that showed me what I am truly capable of as a human being. It changed the way I see life and death and myself. In a good way. It was the times afterward in which I struggled--when no one needed to see me as strong, when all the logistics were taken care of, when there was nothing of importance left to do except mourn.
    I don't know if my example made a whole lot of sense...I have only had one sip of coffee so far...

    "Isn't it odd how sometimes we find our best in what othrs would sometimes consider the worst?"
    You know, I think I could have just skipped the whole post and that would have summed it all up perfect!
    Thank you.

    Cedeno Gems, I don't go looking for the thrill, well, except in a D/s context perhaps. I tend towards a pretty quiet life. I think that's one of the reasons the extremes can be so extreme when they do land at our door--because it's not something we look for in our interactions with other people.


Play nice.