"But I want to stay up a bit longer," I argued.
"You have a long day at work tomorrow," Pablo replied (that was true) smacking me not-very-hard as I
waked walked by.
"See," I teased, giggling a bit, "even you don't want me to go to bed. That smack was pretty half-hearted."
"The ones I'm going to give you in the bedroom won't be."
I gulped. My guilt came flooding back. How could I have forgotten about this morning?
The 4th fell on a Tuesday this year which meant Pablo and I had a weekend of perfect weather and then a couple days off after that. We planned to spend the holiday with older (in years) vanilla friends who like putting on elaborate parties. I'd volunteered to bring dessert and a request had been put in by our host for pavlova (he's very fond of it). This seemed like a good idea -- especially since it could be made in red, white and blue. I dutifully went to the Third Street farmers market for 3 pints of wonderful strawberries and blue berries. And then that was all I could do until the night before.
Monday night my desire to make the two pavlova shells was low. Not that I don't always love baking, but it was already really warm and I felt a bit lazy. So I put it off, aided by a need to wait for the dishwasher to finish its tasks. The pavlova shells turned out beautiful (I had to make two given the number of people expected) and I staggered off to bed sometime after 2am.
That was the danger sign in the story by the way. I don't cope well with being tired.
Thinking back, I'd rather played the short-tempered, prima dona cook the night before. In the morning I pulled my two pavlova shells out of the oven and cooed a bit over how lovely they both were. And then I went in and whined to Pablo about how we'd ever manage to get the brittle meringues to our hosts house without them breaking. He said something about having a plan to pack them and I nodded and decided to go and have a coffee at our local Coffee Bean (it's only a block away -- quicker really than making coffee).
I lingered over my latte a little longer than I should have. When I got home I noticed Pab packing up the pavlovas and then I rushed to shower and get ready. Suddenly I felt nervous. Part of me was excited about my new dress (very cute red sundress from Anthropologie) but mostly I didn't really feel up to socializing (keep in mind my insane level of introversion). Plus I had all these tasks running through my head -- I needed to remember my swimsuit and cover-up, I needed to pack them and lotion in a bag, I needed to change purses....
It went on like that. When I got the dress on and such, Pab asked me about how I planned to pack the strawberries. I muttered something about thinking he was going to do it, and then rushed into the kitchen to find the right sized containers. The pavlova shells, I noticed, were neatly in their boxes. Couldn't he, I thought, have also packed the berries? Why did all of this have to fall on me?
Yeah, I'd started feeling sorry for myself. When Pablo asked me a question about something in my purse, I kind of snapped at him. In fact, I almost took his arm off, letting him know how much nicer it would have been if he'd handled this packing stuff like he said he was going to. We snarled at each other a bit. I had the advantage because Pablo was confused.
Okay, as we got everything done and were on the way there, I realized that I hadn't actually asked him to do the berries and he hadn't realized I needed help. He was justified in being annoyed with me -- it's not a good thing to expect anyone to read my mind. I apologized and it seemed to be over. We had a good time at the party and my pavlova was a raging success.
Seemed to be over until about 12 hours later when I was being held firmly over his knee. I apologized again. It's funny how clearly in the wrong I can feel from this position. What I saw was how often this has been a problem lately -- my sort of snapping when I feel stressed out. Guilt and a desire to do better washed over me.
I'm not sure why, maybe because I had to work the next morning, but I was expecting a hard hand spanking. What I got was a hairbrushing.
A really hard hairbrushing. One that had me trying my hardest to get off his knee, so much so that he had to hold me down with his other leg. And hold my hands behind my back. I was howling, I think. I know I'd stopped caring about making too much noise. The hairbrush sounded so loud to my ears, each crack hurting with terrible thudding burn. It seemed to go on forever -- the hardest spanking I'd had in a very long time.
And then it was over. No more tension between us, no more misunderstanding. The guilt and frustration I had held onto was mostly gone (there would be one more spanking the next night with his hand that seemed to seal that for reasons I'm not entirely clear about).
In the darkness outside there was the sound of skyrockets and firecrackers.