I have always fought being taken care of, in any context (see my previous post). Slowly i am learning to accept his input into my life - which means not just being quiet, listening and following through - but also being ok with it in my head - not fighting it mentally even while i do what he ask's.
I think I have learned and grown as much through the time after playing hard as i have from pretty much anything else. Learning to submit to him physically is one thing: to accept the pain or control, or whatever he chooses, plays right into my tough and strong image of myself. Of course it has all those sexual benefits, and creates intimacy between us and reinforces our trust and understanding of each other. But oddly, even when brought to tears, intense play doesn't create the kind of vulnerability in me as his taking care of me afterwards.
It has been an evolution, like everything else. After intense play, i am of course more open and softer, i feel closer to him and want to be near him; but, i had kept a certain amount of awareness and vigilance in order to be in control of myself, to take care of myself. Over time though, i have fallen deeper in and i lose myself more and more. Being able to let go and crawl to him, to really need him, to have my only instinct be to search out the safety of his arms, has had the most profound effect on me.