My metamours

I’m super happy, totally settled, deeply in love, broke, and busy as fuck at work.  O and I are wonderful.  He was super supportive and read a book or worked on his own work while I worked several evenings this week.  He made me dinner and brought me wine and was so supportive as I marathoned my way through so much work when I would rather have been doing anything else.  After these work-filled evenings, we were able to connect and have some extremely amazing quality time together (read: mind-blowing sex). It was fabulous.  One of the most interesting conversations we had was about how his other girlfriend told him how much she likes me.  It means a lot to me that my newest metamour is on my team.  I like her a lot, so it really makes my heart soar to know she feels the same.  Furthermore, after the horrible experience with W as my first metamour, I’m a little terrified of a repeat performance, and hearing that the relationship is starting on a good note is so reassuring. Now we are at the weekend, and I haven’t seen O for a couple days and I’m missing his touch and presence in my life.  Such is the life when working two jobs and dating two amazing men.

Things with A are fantastic. We are deepening our connection and comfort and commitment to each other.  On our Friday date this week, we went out for dinner and then back to my place.  I was kid-free, so this meant that play happened in the middle of the living room with all the space and opportunity that it provides.  On such evenings, we take the opportunity for rope play that is otherwise impossible when a kid could wake up and knock on the door at any moment.  There are few things that I like better than rope play, and this was no exception.  Tied up, completely helpless, he grabbed my face in his hands, looked me in the eyes, and told me how much he loved me.  It was one of those moments that makes my heart skip beats and leaves a lump in my throat. It was perfect.

Our play was fun, but I was unable to take much in the form of the pain I usually enjoy so much.  I figure that the stress of the last week built up and was manifesting in increased pain sensitivity.  It didn’t change how turned on I was, but I slowed things down and reset by using my big girl words to ask for what I needed.  On these nights, we usually play for hours, taking breaks in between for cuddles and resetting, but it goes on and on. It’s truly amazing.  Not long into the evening, A said he was feeling really awful.  He came back from the bathroom and informed me that he had been vomiting.  Since he wasn’t drunk, we concluded he was sick.  I tucked him into bed, gave him water, and cuddled up to him and we slept.  Honestly, sleeping in his arms all night was just as wonderful as the many orgasms I would have had if he’d been feeling better, but happily, he woke me up at 6 a.m. and I got the full force of his attention. Then we fell back to sleep in each other’s arms and woke at 10 a.m.  A is usually gone from my place fairly early on Saturday mornings, so I was surprised when we woke up so late.  His phone was dead, so I texted his wife to let her know that he had been sick and I’d let him sleep in, and she and I proceeded to have a conversation about some upcoming events and the fact that he needs some body wash and a phone charger at my place, and that she’s going to put together a package for him to bring over.  All that awesomeness said, the next part of our conversation was even better.  Here’s the screenshot:

Ivy text

I have wanted a closer relationship with A’s wife since we got together.  It’s really important for me to get along with my metamours, so I’ve worked very hard to be a supportive girlfriend, to understand her boundaries and her limits, and to not try to push any of those.  It occurs to me now, as her and A’s relationship evolves now that she has a boyfriend, and he and I are expanding our adventures, that part of why this is happening now is because I have worked so hard for things to be comfortable for her, that she feels like she can reach out to me.  How my life has evolved in the last year is amazing. How A’s life has evolved is incredible.  How our relationship has evolved is wonderful. The fact that this evolution includes a stronger relationship between A’s wife and I means so much to me.  Reading her words accepting and appreciating me and being able to express my appreciation of her totally made my day today.  Knowing that O was talking with his other girlfriend about how much she likes me adds to my happiness.  The poly life I dreamed of early on is even better in reality.   

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Vulnerable about vulnerability

This last week was a bit crazy.  So much of A’s stress has resolved, he’s back to the basal level of stress he has as his “normal”, which is still a lot for most, but he’s an expert in dealing with things in the most amazing way. O and I had a rather challenging discussion last week after he reacted strongly to a spontaneous night A and I had and some of the dom/sub dynamics we enjoy and I then was way too hard on him.  What came from it was the most functional, understanding, and loving conflict resolution-type conversation I have ever had with a partner.  He was so….perfect.  About everything.  I was really hard on him.  I over-reacted.  I took our conversation of the previous day, where he warned me to be careful with A, and turned my feelings about that into an excuse to react badly about his feelings about A coming over spontaneously the previous night.  I was blunt and direct and not at all empathetic.  I wasn’t recognizing my triggers and I wasn’t recognizing his. I was not a good girlfriend.  He continued loving me anyway and we had a great talk about the whole thing that evening.  The conflict part of the conversation happened during the day, via text.  Text is, of course, the best way to fuck up your meaning, and this was truly the case. I felt he had questioned my judgement, he felt I had lied to him.  It was a storm of miscommunication and was completely avoidable.  When I sat on his couch with a glass of wine to talk it out, I knew, immediately, that it was going to be fine.  When we are together, we have a very hard time not touching each other.  So, legs wrapped together, holding hands, we broke down and broke through every detail that needed to be discussed.  It ended in us giving each other context, clarifying a few “guidelines” (I can’t think of a better term, but it’s just overarching themes of our relationship that we agree on), and most importantly, opening up the understanding of how our own personal baggage has influenced how we respond to each other, and how we recognize that what we have in each other is as amazing and as statistically improbably as winning the lottery, and how we both want to work to maintain what we have.  I left that conversation, completely emotionally exhausted, but completely reassured that I love him, he is as perfect for me as I thought, and that we are so incredibly good together, it’s amazing.

Part of what I told him was the full story of F and I and our journey in polyamory.  As I was explaining the critical occurrences, the things I did wrong, the things F did wrong, and everything in between, I had this crazy epiphany that I tied into my realization that I’m absolutely shit at asking for what I need. I’m really bad at being vulnerable.  Absolutely horrible, in fact.  Several of my partners have commented on how they don’t know I’m processing something I’m emotional working through until I all of a sudden come to them with a conclusion.  Then they have to catch up with the fact that I have been struggling with something and they had no idea.  I then have to describe the process I went through, the feelings I had, the hurt I experienced.  More than once I’ve heard: “But why didn’t you tell me you were having a hard time?”  Truthfully, I thought it was just how I am.  That I’m an internal processor and that I wasn’t hurting anyone.   I was proud of the exclamations from partners about how strong I am.  Truthfully, I was hurting myself first, and partners and those who love me second.  I was taking on loads that should be shared by the people who love me.  This is the case with O the other day, when I was upset with him about warning me about A, but didn’t communicate it with him.  This is the “event” that made me realize that I have some broken parts that need repairs.  

A few weeks ago, I asked A for some cuddles when I was going through a particularly difficult time. It was slightly easier for me to ask then, because I didn’t know what was wrong.  I just needed closeness and cuddles and to be held, and he obliged. He’s actually really good at just being what I need in the moment without making me explain.  I think he knows that I’ll eventually get to the explanation without being pushed.  I also think it’s just his way and the dynamic we set up this last year as I asked for diversions and distractions from him physically as I went through the emotional pain I wasn’t communicating.  The fact is, asking for cuddles was the first time in several years that I’ve asked someone to do something emotionally supportive for me, because I need it.  When I was talking to O about my story last week, I realized that there was a time when I was better at asking for what I need.  When I was OK with being vulnerable and didn’t feel like I needed to be strong and hide my pain from others.  I realized that that time was long in the past, before F and I were married and our dynamic changed from one of some sort of mutual support (I’m not sure it was ever completely healthy, but certainly healthier than where it ended up), to one where I supported him, and if I needed support, he had free license to turn it into something he needed support for.

Before I go on, I need to also address the fact that I remembered last weekend that F has PTSD.  He is in emergency services and has been for nearly 20 years.  I was talking with a friend and coworker at my second job who has been a huge mental health advocate for emergency services personnel in the last years.  As I chatted with her about her journey, my experiences being married to F came out.  I remembered the hurtful awful things he did.  The pain he felt. The fact that he was able to pretend he wasn’t chronically affected by his career choice when we went to Sweden and the stressors were removed, but that when we returned to Canada, the stressors reappeared and he spiralled into the oblivion that is PTSD.  She understood the trend for long-term emergency services workers to take their worst experiences out on their spouses. It reminded me that early in our relationship, and even as it progressed for the next 14 years, F frequently talked of divorce, alcoholism, or suicide as a given.  He seemed to think that losing his mental health was a predetermined certainty and that it would cost him everything that meant something to him.  As I told my story, she sympathized with me AND with F, and just shook her head and even cried at the fact that our story isn’t unusual.  This whole conversation reminded me that while the way that F treated me was unacceptable, it isn’t entirely him, so much as his mental illness, that is driving his behaviour.  That I, too, am a victim of the stress that is the career he chose.  It also made me ridiculously angry at the fact that he didn’t move into positions that would offer less stress (and more money) or access the amazing supports available to him when he had opportunities for the protection of our marriage and, even more, our children and families.  There were many of these opportunities, yet he focused on blame and the fact that I chose to work in a job I love in my chosen career rather than stay home with my children.  So, take any story of his inability to be a decent husband, and sometimes, a decent person, with a grain of salt. The man clearly has mental illness, and I don’t want to diminish from the fact that he actually has redeemable qualities that made him, at one point, long ago, an acceptable choice as a partner.

As I told O my story, I realized the gravity of the things I went through in the last year.  How any support from F came with a price.  How I needed, badly, someone who had my back in all of the horrible situations I found myself in.  I thought about how I asked F for support as I was encountering feelings with his relationship with W.  How I asked for time, connection, love, touch, and even a smile.  How I frequently asked for simple touches, like a hug or a kiss, and was denied.  How he frequently refused to sleep with me because I snore, wouldn’t touch me when I was struggling emotionally, demeaned me as useless when I wasn’t supporting him exactly how he wanted, though he didn’t communicate his needs, and how even when he was intimate with me, the whole episode was about his pleasure, his climax, and had so little to do with mine.  As I thought it through, as I recognized the damaged goods that I am, I could see how somewhere in the years that we had been together, F had become the person who I supported.  I became his strength and his support, but he wasn’t that for me.  (There’s a lot of irony here, because he had a hard time with the fact that I “didn’t need him anymore”, when we embraced polyamory.)  

Nothing is a more clear an example of his manipulation as when I was diagnosed with post-partum depression in 2015.  At that time, #4 was 3 months old. He had a few health scares early on.  When they were resolved, and I didn’t get better, I realized that I needed help that wasn’t going to come in the form of “giving it time” or “accepting my situation”.  So I made an appointment with my family physician and got a prescription for antidepressants.  Thirteen days later, I woke up, myself, for the first time in six years, realizing that this acute depression had been preceded by six years of a low level chronic depression.  The intervening thirteen days where I adjusted to my meds were some of the most difficult of my life. I was unable to get out of bed in the morning.  The antidepressant I’m on is a sedative and it takes some time to adjust.  I had a three month old baby, who, thankfully, was the best sleeper, and would wake a 8:30 a.m.  I would nurse him and hand him off to F.  F would get up with the children, feed and care for them, and put #4 down for a nap, who would wake up at around noon.  I would get up, feed him, and we would get going and spend the afternoon together. I was groggy and stressed and still very much depressed.  Just going through the motions of daily life was an enormous challenge.  During this whole time, I heard no end of complaints about how hard it was on F.  How he wasn’t getting a vacation, how I was “lazing” away the days while he worked so hard.  How he was suffering, and I wasn’t helping.  It went on and on. It was one long complaint.  After two weeks, I came out of my depression with a new lease on life. I realized how difficult our relationship had been for years and started tackling some of the issues that needed to be fixed.  I took control again.  

The reality of this is that every time I had an issue, every time I was vulnerable, my needs became a problem for F.  He turned my suffering into his.  I ended up supporting him through my stresses.  It was the very definition of unhealthy, having a partner who couldn’t actually see past the end of his nose to support me.  When I was talking to A about F, he said “I don’t understand him.  He’s clearly very selfish”, and I can’t help but agree with him.  Anything anyone in his life was going through became about him.  The kids being kids and being loud or demanding became them misbehaving and being hard on him after a night shift.  Me needing a break and time off for myself when I was home with kids alone for days at a time on his days off was me making things too hard for him, denying him a break.  Me needing him for anything was about him.  

What does this mean?  It means that every time, for 14 years, that I was at all vulnerable, I had a partner who not only didn’t support me, but required me to support him.  I did so, to the best of my ability, and he criticized me for it.  So somewhere along the journey, I stopped asking for support.  I stopped being vulnerable.  I stopped needing anyone but myself.  I turned completely inwards.  This is where A and O, the loves in my life, find me.  This is where my strong friends, like G, find me. Strong and independent to a fault.  Reluctant to share my truths with many.  Not asking for help, but wanting the support (and perhaps needing it) more than anyone can guess.  

Now, I have two men in my life who ACTUALLY want to help me work through my weaknesses.  I have friends who are unfailingly supportive.  But I don’t know how to ask for the help I need. No, that’s not true. I know HOW to ask, I don’t know how to feel safe asking for what I need.  I’m bad at vulnerability.  The fact that I’ve felt raw and vulnerable this week, while I process this truth of my inability to be good at vulnerability is the wildest irony in this situation.  The fact is, I have to unpack this fact, dissect it.  Understand the healthy parts, discard the unhealthy ones, and figure out how to function better for my own good.  For myself, but also for the people who I love and who love me.  I need to model good communication and self-care for my children and that comes with not always being the strong person and being vulnerable sometimes.  I need to be better.  I’m still being strong and fun and unapologetic, which is good.  Going forward, I need to be someone who is strong and fun and unapologetic who is really, truly all of those things because I have the support of those I love and the strength to show them the vulnerable, feeling, hurting, emotional side of me too.  Understanding what led me here is a huge revelation.  Unpacking it will take time.  Thankfully, I have people who will encourage me to do the things I need for myself, including being there when I am vulnerable and ask for the support I need.

One of the many things I love about O is that he asks me what I need.  What I want from our date or what I want him to communicate or if I need anything specific in any situation.  Just by being himself, he is pulling my needs from me and making it normal for me to ask for what I need.  This game changer seems to be just naturally changing my game.   

Choose Every Day

I’ve had a lot of conversations with A about relationship structures and obligations, responsibilities, and priorities in poly relationships and how they relate to hierarchy.  Hierarchy doesn’t have to be a bad thing.  Formalized rules and regulation and veto usually are, at least in my experience, but also don’t have to be bad.  I had a friend recently who really liked a guy.  She wanted to continue dating him.  She ran away as fast as she could in the opposite direction when he laid out the rules he and his wife had:  The wife had to know all the plans for the date.  He had to be home by 11 p.m.  His wife needed all of my friend’s sexual partners disclosed to her. No more than one date every week.  No overnights.  It went on.  Honestly, I wouldn’t ever consider dating a man with that type of primary relationship structure.  It smacks of insecurity.  Having been married to an insecure man and dealing with him as my partner in a poly relationship and having him date an even more insecure woman and dealing with her particular insanity have me on high alert for those types of control issues.  Too many rules inevitably mean that someone is try to control the situation because they are uncomfortable, usually driven by insecurity, or lack of stability in their relationship.  I just can’t date a person who lives in that world.  

Fortunately, A, O, and I don’t suffer from major insecurities, we all communicate well and have very few rules apart from the “Be safe, be honest, be respectful” undercurrent in all our time together.  But what this means is that there is a lot of communication about other relationships, how we feel about them, and how the relationships overlap.  I came into my relationship with A knowing he was married.  I’ve never expected or desired any more than exactly what we have right now.  What we have is absolutely perfect for us.  But I actively chose to respect his relationship and honour his commitments to his marriage, his family, his business and everything else in his life.  F liked to criticize my relationship structure with my other partners when we were still together, so I had to think a lot about what I want and how I feel about my relationships.  I enter every relationship with the same idea – that no matter what the obligations and responsibilities are, I will respect my partner’s choices.  I’ve dated a few solo poly men with kids, a solo poly guy with dogs and a mortgage, and a couple married men.  The point to me is that no matter who they are or what they do or what their life looks like, they come with a life that they have chosen and that requires respect and consideration when developing the relationship structure that we want together.

A few weeks ago, A and I were talking about his different relationships and what they meant.  In typical practical A fashion, he said something to the effect of: “I have a 20 year history with my wife, a family, a mortgage, and an entire life together.  With you, we don’t share anything.  Ending my marriage would be devastating.  Ending my relationship with you would suck, but it would be easy.”  OK, obvious heart pang aside, there is an element of truth in this statement that is obvious.  When you only share selfies, a few pornographic videos and pics, and hot sex, the relationship is easier to untangle.  When you share retirement savings, progeny that contain 50% of your DNA each, and purchased your bed together, things are a little more complicated.  This was quite apparent to me this past weekend, when I was talking to a poly friend about her boyfriend and her husband.  She’s been with her husband for 23 years.  They were high school sweethearts.  I said something about my divorce and she said “I wish I was as strong as you.  I should leave my husband, but it’s just too hard.  I still love him, but I’m not happy.  I think we are just together out of habit.”  Another friend came over for wine last week.  She said she was going to give her marriage another four years, and then she’s gone.  Four years!  Knowing she’s planning on ending it.  Her reasoning?  They can’t afford to live apart right now.  They need each other’s incomes.  They are staying together out of practicality, not because they want, need, or desire each other in their life.  

These conversations had me thinking.  As I’ve looked back over my marriage, critically analyzing my role in the whole process we went through, I realized that I fell back into that routine and comfort in a relationship, continually moving forward without really considering if it was what I wanted for myself.  I just accepted it as the commitment that I made, no longer considering if it was, in fact, what I needed and wanted in my life.  If it fulfilled me and my need for connection and love.  I really didn’t consider that I was unhappy.  I just thought that was how it should be.  Of course, it’s easier for me to break up with a boyfriend of a few months than it is to break up with my husband, who I have four kids with, a mortgage, retirement savings, debt, and a 14 year history.  But that for as long as I can remember, I didn’t really consider if I *wanted* to be in that relationship, but just accepted it without thought, is a bit of a problem in my mind.

I was thinking about my current relationships, the relationships I have had in the last year, and the relationships I would like going forward, and I realized something that is a strength of polyamorous relationship structure that is lacking in monogamous relationships: the common thread about all of my poly relationships is that every day, I choose them.  There is something completely romantic to me in the fact that every morning, I choose A and O.  I choose the time I spend with them, I choose the contact and communication I have with them, I choose to be completely with them when we are together.  I carve out time in my life to prioritize them because I love them.  In my monogamous relationships, they all started out that way, but eventually life took over, we took each other for granted, and we moved forward as a matter of routine.  It wasn’t choosing each other, but rather, not choosing something or someone else.

This complacency isn’t something I want in my life.  I’ve spent the last year actively choosing only things that make me happy and fulfill me in ways that I hadn’t previously dreamed. I’ve made some hard choices, some even harder choices, and some that were so easy that I wondered why I didn’t make them sooner. Within my relationship with A, it’s easy to avoid complacency.  We won’t escalate to the point where we ever won’t have to choose to be together.  We won’t share life in the way that anything could become routine.  Now that I have a partner who is likely to escalate to all the levels, I’m trying to work through the mental exercise of how I can hypothetically take on all the comforts and commitments of a shared life and responsibilities and obligations that go with it, while avoiding that mental switch that turns it from a choice to a routine.  I want to choose to live my life the way I want every day for the rest of my life.  I don’t want to go through life as a matter of routine, like a ghost floating through my days without actively engaging in my life and connecting with the important people in it. I want to remember all the reasons I value my partners, friends, family, jobs, and overall life, always.  I want to go through the rest of my life actively choosing it.  I think a strength of the polyamorous relationship structures that I’ve chosen, is that I do get that choice.  Every day.

Perfectly happy

In the past 2 weeks, I’ve completely fallen for O.  Thankfully, he’s also fallen for me. We mock ourselves for falling hard and fast, but neither of us is interested in stepping off or even slowing down our runaway train.  It’s just right.  Everything about it.  The last couple of nights, I slept at his house. We got a lot of time to chat and laugh and connect and lots of intimate time too.  This morning when I arrived at work, after he dropped me off that is, because I shut off my alarm and sort of….um…..got side-tracked before getting out of bed and getting ready for my day until it

was way too late for me to make it to work via public transit, I sat in my office sort of reentering into reality after the last few wonderful days.  Reentry wasn’t difficult or painful or anything negative. It was wonderful. Lost in the feeling of something so amazing coming blasting into my life in such a powerful way.  Reminding myself of the things I have to get done in the next few weeks at my job and how little stress I feel about them.  Reflecting on the powerful nature of the last few weeks and how truly happy and fulfilled I am.  In my true fashion, I had to message O and just express exactly how I feel.  This is what I said:

“I’ve spent the bulk of the morning distracted, thinking about how amazing the last few days were.  I know I’ve said it over and over and over, but I love what we have.  The intensity of our connection, the comfort of our touch, the hotness of our intimacy, and the laughter and learning in all of our conversations.  I love that we can be honest without judgement, support each other without having to be asked, and that we fall into each other and fit together so perfectly.  Everything about us, the acceptance, love, and connection, well, it’s just RIGHT.  Thank you for coming charging into my life, stealing my heart and turning my world upside down.  I wouldn’t trade these last 2 weeks for the world.  I love you.”

I really can’t put how I feel any more succinctly.  I’m just completely happy.

 


Things with A are also perfect. The walls he had up that kept me at a distance are gone.  There’s a connection between us that has just strengthened more and more in the last few months.  It’s exactly what I suspected was there all along, but I love the feeling of reciprocation of my feelings for him.  I love what we have and truthfully, I loved it before too. I would have continued the way we were, but now that I have that extra deep loving connection, I’m so secure in our relationship that it’s hard to imagine I ever questioned it.  

Yesterday, we went out for drinks, were just chatting away at one of our favourite pubs, and a couple of his friends were there.  One came over and said “Hi”, but was extremely awkward.  He is one of the many that know about me, but I suspect he may be a little uncomfortable with our relationship structure.  The other friend left, so A sent him a teasing text about walking past us, and he returned and had a couple drinks with us.  It was the first time that our relationship overlapped with the rest of A’s life with any substance.  It was completely normal.  His friend didn’t treat me strangely, made an effort to engage me in conversation, and was generally very pleasant.  Of course I said a few things that made his eyes bulge, but that’s kind of a thing I do with most people.  It was so nice, just a further breaking down of the walls that were there before, figuratively speaking anyway.

A dropped me back off at work and as I kissed him goodbye and breathed him in, he said exactly what I was thinking.  He said: “I love the way you smell, it’s such a comfort zone for me now.”  I laughed, kissed him, told him I loved him and jumped out of his truck.  

He’s going through more stress than anyone should ever face, let alone all at the same time.  Yet his attitude is amazing.  He is so strong.  What all this means to me, is that I am in a place where I can be a comfort to him. Support him.  Be (one) soft place to fall.  I appreciate this role more than I can say, since he was that place for me this whole last year.  That sometimes that comfort comes with the response to the way I smell when I kiss him?  Perfect.

Dickhead

I keep starting a version of this post and either falling asleep or getting distracted with one of my million other priorities.  The thing is, life is so good, that it’s kind of difficult to write about.  It kind of seems like “Here’s my charmed life and it’s awesomeness, care if I rub your nose in it right now?”  But then I got thinking today, thanks to Facebook memories.

This coming Friday is one year since my first date with D.  He hasn’t shown up at the last couple events that we should have run into each other at, so either he has shit going on, or he’s avoiding me.  I guess it’s possible that I made it that awkward, but I like to think that I couldn’t have that big of an effect on him.  Realistically speaking, it doesn’t matter to me.  I’m so caught up in my relationships with A and O, that I haven’t thought about D at all apart from a “Huh, too bad he’s not here, he’s missing out”.  So when my Facebook memories popped up yesterday with a “Congratulations on one year of Friendship” video (yes, we were Facebook friends before we met in person), I was shocked to see him, and then shocked that I hadn’t thought about him in so long.  

When I was trying to pick a letter for O for this blog, I gave him a choice of letter, his first name starts with a “D”, so it makes sense that he would be D, but since it was taken, this wasn’t an option.  We settled on “O”, and that was it. Truthfully, D has come to mean more than the name I referred to D as in my blog.  When I first asked F for a trial separation, D sent me this song:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=suaveqvlWP8

I love this song.  The Dickhead theme kept me going through some of the harder days of my breakup with F.  It’s why D sent it to me.  Something to make me laugh about all the crazy stupidity that was going on in my personal life.  There were days when I listened to it on repeat.  I may have once turned it on full volume when F was talking to me about something and treating me inappropriately. I left it in my YouTube playlist and it continued to come up from time to time.  Now, the song no longer makes me think of F, although “Dickhead” can be a very good name to sum up who he is.  But every time it comes on, it reminds me of D.  It turns out that D no longer is as simple as a letter to maintain anonymity.  I guess it stopped being just that soon after I fell for him.  D, someone I was once Devoted to, someone I Desired, and someone I thought was part of my Destiny, turned out to be a Disappointment, a Deplorable communicator, and a DICKHEAD!  

It’s childish. It’s funny.  It’s apt.  It’s true.

 

Deep love and a game changer

My world has turned upside down in the most wonderful way.  Everything is fabulous.  Everything.  The last week with A has been great.  We’ve had several good chats and the shift in him – the removal of walls, the calm acceptance, and commitment of love that we’ve experienced in the last weeks – seems to be planning on sticking around.  I’ve known for a long time how he felt about me, but hearing those three words, and then more over the last week has me smiling at my phone like a twitterpated fool on a semi-regular basis because of him.  Yesterday though, he had my heart exploding with love for him.  I was simply being a supportive girlfriend as he processed some stress in his life, a role I love filling, as he is so rarely in need of my support, where I feel I’ve been leaning on him a lot, especially in the last six months. Yesterday, I got a few messages, and they all amounted to this:

I am thankful for you.  I absolutely 100% am glad I rejected you. You have been an amazing partner and helped me transform into someone I never expected or anticipated. I love you! You are pretty amazing!  Totally the best girlfriend ever…

These came with my responses in between, but the words are his.  I honestly didn’t think I could love him more.  I knew in my heart how I felt about him. He knew how I felt about him because I’m not shy about who I am and what I want and how I feel.  I suspected how he felt about me, because his actions spoke loudly, even if he was mute for words.  Hearing him say it? Reading those words?  I’m a twitterpated teenager in love, my heart bursting and just wanting to giggle and kiss him and hold him to me.  I’m so incredibly thankful that I took his offer of friendship and crossed the couch last January.

Speaking of twitterpated teenager in love, that’s a general theme in my life lately.  The intensity with A is there, still very strong 10 months in, but the fact is that O has taken my life by storm and the twitterpated teenager in me can’t get enough of him.  I’ve fallen for him.  Hard and fast and fearfully. It’s wonderful and a bit terrifying.  

He’s a game changer.  Three weeks ago, I was saying that I was going to be solo-poly forever, that I had no desire to ever commit to a nesting partner again, that I doubted I’d ever be out in the open with any of my relationships again.  The last few days, O and I have talked about how we have limitless potential. I’ve been pretty honest about how I’m feeling with him.  That I’m extremely excited about him, I’ve thought about the potential our relationship has, and that it kind of scares the shit out of me.  I’m not entirely comfortable when I’m not in control, and my emotions for him are a bit of a runaway train.  That being said, I want to grip onto this train and hold tight, because he feels the exact same way.  We can hold on together and to each other, and I have every reason to believe that we can do this together successfully.  I remember reading about game changers when I read “More than Two”, and kind of rolling my eyes.  “Not me, I’m so in control of my emotions and my life choices.”  Well, I’m still in control of those things, but in a way where things I didn’t expect I’d want are some of the choices I may be willing to consider in the future.  I’m pragmatic though. I understand that we are so very new, despite falling fast. That there are unknowns that are coming, including his other partner(s), and how their relationships will develop.  So for now, just knowing how I feel, and that the potential exists there and we are both interested in pursuing where ever it is that we are going is enough.

Falling in love? Amazing.  Falling in love with someone who feels the same way about you?  Incredible.  Falling in love while being honest with others and true to yourself?  Perfection.

Freedom and love: G gives me perspective

Life is still incredibly amazing. I’ve made so many good decisions for myself in recent months, and my happiness is the reward for each individual success.  Tonight, G came over for dinner.  She is so great at communication that she came over a few weeks ago to ask for a little more time and connection with me.  Instead of doing things, she needed to connect – have substantial conversations and just be with me.  There are few things in this world that I appreciate more than people I love who communicate well, and this is true in this case also.  It’s so easy to give the people you love what they need when they ask you for exactly what that thing is.  Well, this evening was full of connection.  We cuddled and chatted and had supper and just laughed and talked and, well, were.  We just were.

So much happened in my life in the last week that there was a lot to catch her up on. With O, who has taken my life by storm and with A, who has been a bit of a storm of his own this week.  Talking about her world and its developments and a healthy dose of sex talk and sex toy conversations. It was wonderful!

Among the things that came up was how she never asks for help from others.  That several of the people in life are rarely aware that she is struggling until she fills them in later after she’s done processing. That is so familiar to me.  In fact, it sort of hit home when she said that, because she was the only person for months who knew that I was still hurting about D. That when I saw him it was like getting hit in the chest with a bazooka (no, this has not actually happened to me, it’s what I imagine getting hit in the chest with a bazooka would feel like).  I mentioned that to her and we talked through a few points to do with him.

Specifically, I realized that while I had been honest with myself when I saw him about still loving him, I had only been honest with G about what I was still feeling.  Even then I wasn’t completely clear with her.  Then a few things happened.  It was pointed out to me in conversation with someone who has never said a bad thing about D before that he is a total asshole.  I immediately proceeded to defend him and was stopped.  Simply put, he said: “Anyone who did to you what he did, in the way he did it, is an asshole.  There’s nothing to discuss there.”  This truth hit me hard.  It also happened only a few days after I had drunk texted D.  Now, my drunk text wasn’t particularly bad.  I wasn’t proclaiming everlasting love or pining for him.  I was just thinking about him and reached out.  I was drunk, so it wasn’t the most coherent ending, and the next morning, I apologized, said my train of thought clearly derailed and exploded, and explained that I wanted nothing from him but would like to be friends.  It was kind, apologetic, and I was a little vulnerable in it all.  He never responded.  

It’s funny to me that this seemingly small, insignificant event, one that I laughed off nearly immediately, was the final nail in the coffin of my affection for D.  In the end, I realized how little compassion and understanding he truly feels for others.  I realized how selfish and uncommunicative he was.  How he didn’t respect me enough to just say “hey, no thanks” to an offer of meeting for lunch.  

I was explaining all this to G today, and I said: “I could forgive him for dumping me the way he did.”  For not communicating when I had questions or offering an explanation or honouring what we shared.  But when he showed so little compassion for me when I asked directly for a response, I couldn’t hide behind the excuse that it was a one time thing.  All that time I spent thinking he was true to himself and did what he felt he needed to do to be happy meant I didn’t realize that he actually is just an uncompassionate, selfish, broken person.  This isn’t easy for me to write.  I write it, and despite months of  being apart, my go-to is to defend him. To focus on those amazing times before he broke up with me.  To forget that he hurt me worse than any man ever has.  

But G said several somethings tonight that hit me right where I needed to be smacked.  The first thing she said was that she couldn’t believe I could forgive him, because she hadn’t.  She said she is still every bit as angry at him as she was on day one because the way he acted was inappropriate and he hurt someone she loved.  She said she is pretty sure it was my divorce that was too much for him, which was too bad.  I said that the unfortunate part is that if he had just hung out and waited it out, only a couple months later, I was, by far, the best version of me I had ever been.  I pointed out that the people who waded through that dark time with me were now the people who were receiving the best version of me they possibly could.  That I am the best me in every part of my life now.  That people like A stuck it out and supported me and were everything I needed them to be.  He was exactly what I needed him to be on so many nights where I was done with everything in my world and I needed him to make me forget it all.  I remember saying to him that I needed to not talk about my hurt or anger, that I needed him to overwhelm me with sensation and make me forget anything and everything but what was going on in the moment.  I remember saying a version of that for weeks (months?) in a row.  I know that he never once failed to do so.  He helped me forget.  He helped me numb myself.  He helped me heal.  He helped me become the me I am now.  Not because he supported me (which he did) or that he put up with my crazy (which he did), but because he LET me hurt and be and process and ask for what I needed and take charge and just held on for the ride. He didn’t demand anything of me and never tried to save me and he was exactly what I needed him to be because he let me be the strong independent person I am and the weak person who needed to heal at the same time.

What she said, that hit me like a ton of bricks straight to the head, was: “Did it occur to you that what you got was the best version of D, and that he wasn’t good enough for you?”  Wait!!! What???  The idea that the best version of him wasn’t the wonderful times, but the man who broke up with me via email with no reason and then cut off all communication with me wasn’t what I was expecting, but when it hit, it hit hard and stuck there.  She’s absolutely right.  

As my best friend, soul sister, and a person I love unconditionally, G has my heart in her hands. She knows me well, she loves me deeply, and she isn’t scared to verbalize the hard truths.  Today, she said something that threw me for a loop.  She said that the people in my world who love me and attach to me thrive off my love of life, my energy, and my enthusiasm. That when I am down, or going through a dark period, like this summer after D dumped me, and I had to process all the hurt of the previous six months,  they can’t feed off my energy, and it’s hard for them. Some people, who want and can give that love and energy back to me when I’m not able to give myself, stick by me, support me, and love me.  Others, who just want to take, well, they leave, killing off a bit of that part of me that gives.  Fortunately, that giving part of me regenerates once I evict those people from my heart.  I’ve just completed that regeneration.  It’s amazingly liberating.  When I talked to A about this the other day, he made the point that I’m finally at that point where I can love in a way that isn’t limited due to hurt.  That I’m free again.  I think my NRE with O is a true expression of that new-found freedom and space in my heart, freed by my finally letting go of D. Freedom and love: basic human rights, at least in my world.