chronically kinky, chronically ill

chronically kinky, chronically ill

Photo of a glass of pills that have spilled onto the table with the words "chronically kinky, chronically ill" overlaid

i’ve been living with significant body aches and fatigue for years now. it took me until this past summer to finally speak to my doctor about how i’d been feeling. my theory is that i’d been living with pain for so long that i didn’t even think to tell any of my doctors about it. i had learned to muddle through and assumed this was just how you feel when you’re hitting middle age and when you could be in better shape. i didn’t really know much about chronic illness.

after some bloodwork, x-rays, and a physical, the rheumatologist to whom i had been referred by my awesome, compassionate internist diagnosed me with an autoimmune disease. i’ve been working with her since and i’ve been making some progress towards remission.

while it was a relief to get a diagnosis, the last few months have been difficult trying to make some serious lifestyle adjustments. i’m someone who will –go go go– until i drop right into bed for an entire weekend of slow recovery. i’d been fighting myself for years, trying to push an exhausted body and mind harder and harder.

but that’s something i can’t do now. i have to measure out my time and energy and prioritize. i have to cut corners where i can, get someone to help me, not push too hard on days when i do feel strong and relatively pain-free. i’ve had to learn to give myself injections, to get more sleep, to drink way more water, and to say “no” when i know i’ve reached my limit. i’m still trying to learn what those limits are and how to pay attention when my body says “slow down.” it’s difficult; i’m a perfectionist and i’m stubborn.

all of that said, i’ve still enjoyed a really healthy sex life in the last couple of years with a partner who understands my body sometimes better than i do. for good overall health, regular sex and impact play has helped keep me flexible and smiling.

it seems a little counterintuitive for some people. why would you inflict pain to relieve pain, they ask. as kirsten schultz of wrote in her 2017 post flogging ended my year-long fibro flare,

I mentioned it to my rheumatologist at our latest appointment and she was ecstatic. When I told her how, she was really intrigued. We believe that, somehow, the BDSM play helped to rejigger the pain messages my body was sending. Researchers believe that mixed up pain signals are what fibro essentially is, after all.

unfortunately, i don’t quite have that relationship with my rheumatologist, but i can say with confidence that impact play has often “rejiggered” my entire being, loosening up muscles and strengthening fascia and lengthening my spine. my hips, accustomed to the tightness brought on by a sedentary job in a crappy chair, start to sway a little more, making circles and slow U-shapes. i can feel a pop and a snap here and there as tension releases. sometimes i cry from deep in my belly, heaving sobs escaping my throat and tears falling onto Daddy’s bare feet.

with every swing of the padded baton, i feel lighter. my mind is focused on the pain of the paddle hitting my pink flesh. my desire is to please and to release. my release gives Daddy pleasure, too, as he knows the week has been so long and i’ve pushed so hard. he knows our friday ritual is important to me and to my physical well-being.

he is a very important member of my treatment team, needless to say.

i’m trying to view sex and kink as part of my wellness plan, quite honestly. when i’m depressed or in pain, i tend to avoid people and prefer to be left alone to recover and heal. but what’s actually more useful to me as a long-term coping skill is reaching out rather than isolating myself. asking my partner to paddle and cane me, to redirect my attention from the pain in my lower back to the stripes he’s putting on my ass, is so effective for me when i remember to ask for it or when i’m lucky enough that Daddy notices and initiates.

just as i view cannabis as medicine, similarly i view impact play (and bdsm more broadly) as medicine for my body and spirit. there’s not a painkiller as effective as my Daddy’s hand lovingly squeezing my flaring arm. 😉

review: tantus snap strap & plunge paddle

review: tantus snap strap & plunge paddle

i had been absolutely drooling over the tantus plunge paddle for several months when my sex toy dreams came true and the kind folx there sent me one to review, PLUS a second one, the snap strap. the day the box came, i practically danced a jig in the kitchen.

“i’m gonna get spaaaaaanked! i’m gonna get spaaaaaanked!”

i sang with a big smile as i bounced around the room. *i* was ready to get this party started!

i recently bought my first tantus product, the super soft c-ring, which my Daddy and i really quite like. the 100% ultra-premium silicone is the first thing you notice about tantus products. the material is velvety and cleans up surprisingly well, not to mention it’s body safe. as i took the paddle and strap out of the box, i gently rubbed the black matte strap against my cheek and sighed.

i never said i was “normal,” whatever that is.

when it came time for testing these bad boys out, i was a wee bit nervous. i’m relatively new to impact play and am very much in training to take more pain, so needless to say, i was wondering if i’d be able to walk the next day.

here’s what i discovered:

mastering the tantus snap strap

tantus snap strap
tantus snap strap

the snap strap is very… flexible, basically wobbly. it’s wise to think of this thin, 17.55-inch strap as less a paddle and more like a belt. the first smack on my bare ass had a sharp sting that took me by surprise. there is a little bit of a learning curve with the snap strap. my Daddy reports that there’s a certain wrist technique you need to master to use the snap strap effectively. he recommends stepping back a little from your subject, because the strap is actually pretty long and you can end up hitting someone in a not-so-great place if you don’t pay decent attention. for someone like me in training, i think it’s a toy to spend some time using and to work up to longer sessions with it.

tantus snap strap
tantus snap strap

it makes sense that both toys are marketed to the “advanced enthusiast;” you do need to have a good sense of control in your arm, wrist, and fingers and a decent sense of where on the body to land the blow. but the strap is not a particularly thuddy toy. instead, the plunge creates a lovely snapping, whooshing sound. it’s pretty fun once your partner gets the hang of it and, at least for me, when you alternate between this toy and another. we’re going to be working with this one for a while, i think, because i think there’s still a lot of potential here even if it takes some practice.

sex toy light bulb moment! 💡

something that has occurred to me while playing with this a few times, and having just returned from a trip, is that it’s a fairly discreet toy that can be rolled up and stored in a bag or suitcase without tipping anyone off. it just looks like a wider belt with no metal to set off detectors.

take the plunge!

although the tantus plunge paddle is also made for more intermediate/advanced players, both of us

tantus plunge paddle
tantus plunge paddle

found this toy easier to use right out of the packaging and with more than one option for pleasure! the plunge is made of the same dreamy black silicone. the paddle itself is much thicker and heavier than the snap strap, so you can get a nice thuddy smack against the skin with good control, especially since it’s a smaller toy. your partner will be closer to you when they paddle you, which leaves them ready and able to stick the 6″ insertable handle-that-doubles-as-a-shaft right into your… well, wherever you’d like. there are many fun places to put the shaft, but keep in mind that it’s not particularly bendy. it’s pretty solid and i’d be careful when inserting it. this toy is far more obvious. 😏

tantus plunge paddle
tantus plunge paddle

that said, it’s reaaaaalllly amazing to be able to switch things up quickly. i enjoyed having it jammed into my mouth while being penetrated by my partner. it really spiced things up for me and i felt super subby as Daddy grabbed it out of my mouth and began spanking me with the paddle again. it’s also amazing when alternated with the strap. you get a sting, then another sting, then maybe a few thuds from the plunge, and another sting from the strap.  there are just so many options here!

the only downside (and it’s not at all that dire…)

my only issue with the plunge paddle is the hole that’s drilled into the insertable handle. you have to make sure to clean out that part of the toy after every use because it could get really gunked up and gross. it would probably be better product design to eliminate the hole that presumably you’d use to hang it up. (this is a toy you’ll want to display due to its elegant minimalist design, but you don’t really have to hang it up, do you?) this is really the only qualm i have. the issue of maintenance is easily answered by popping your plunge into the dishwasher or boiling in a pot of water to sanitize. on the go, both of these silicone sweeties clean up well with my fave afterglow cleansing tissues, but you can even use bleach if necessary.

summing it up

overall, i’m very pleased with both plunge paddle and the snap strap, especially alternating them in the same session. be ready to put in a bit of time and effort learning the best way to play with them, but it’s totally worth it for such high-quality body safe implements from tantus.

**thanks to tantus for providing me with these two products to review in exchange for my honest review.