Lots of kinky people have heard the term subspace (if you haven’t, it’s the happy, floaty, blissed out state some bottoms can get into when they have a good scene), but it seems like fewer people have heard of top space.
For me, topspace is a relaxed but extremely focused state where everything inside my scene is fantastic and everything outside of it might as well not exist. It feels like a type of flow state, but more altered, if that makes any sense. While my topspace isn’t quite as floaty and spaced out as I’ve heard subspace can be, I wouldn’t want to make any big decisions while I was in it. It feels really, really good but my judgement is definitely impaired when I’m in topspace.
If that sounds dangerous, it’s because it is. I can get so focused on landing the flogger exactly where I want it that I don’t realize just how close my bottom is to their limits. Fortunately I mostly play with people who are awesome at calling red when they need to so no harm was done, but since then I’ve been a lot more careful to stay focused on my bottom’s reactions when I feel myself slipping into topspace.
On the less dangerous and more funny side, a friend and I were once on the way home from a play party where we had both played and I got us completely lost by being too spaced out to navigate. All I needed to do was reverse the directions he had printed out to get us from my house to the party, but somehow I messed it up and we ended up driving around lost until we found some random people to ask for directions. Moral of the story: don’t play and navigate.
If you know you’re prone to getting into a spacey sort of topspace, I don’t think that means you’re an inherently dangerous top but I do think it’s important to know the signs that you’re getting into an altered state, and to correct for that by putting a little extra attention on your bottom. Personally I start feeling intensely relaxed, letting out happy sighs, and sometimes it seems like colours get brighter and my vision gets sharper. Being someone who has a lot of trouble really relaxing (not that tops are prone to being control freaks at all :), that intense relaxation can be so seductive that it’s hard to remember that I need to pay really close attention to what I’m doing.
Cautions aside, how do you get into topspace? For me, it’s easier to get there if I’m doing something rhythmic like flogging or whipping. Music seems to help too. And to go back to the flow state thing, it seems to work better if I’m doing something I really need to concentrate on. Flogging can get me there, but it doesn’t take the intensity of focus that using a whip does. I imagine needles or knives might do it too, but I still haven’t tried either of those.
What about you, readers? Do you go into topspace, and if you do what does it feel like? And if you have any tips for getting there I’d love to hear them.