On guideposts, intentions, and manifesting the life I want.

My mission, should I choose to accept it, is to find peace with exactly who and what I am. To take pride in my thoughts, my appearance, my talents, my flaws and to stop this incessant worrying that I can’t be loved as I am.
-Anais Nin

Working on my List of Intentions for 2017. This quote is going to be a guidepost for me. It doesn’t, to me, mean there isn’t room for growth and change. But it reminds me to focus my energy on positive things, like growth and change, instead of “this incessant worrying that I can’t be loved as I am”, where ever I am on that journey.

I also want to try to worry less about fitting everything and everyone into specific boxes.

Specific list coming later, but currently the List of Intentions looks a lot like cultivating more love, kink, joy, growth, spirituality, creativity, understanding, learning, reaching out to help others, purging that which no longer serves me, figuring out what does serve me, how to better serve others, exploring my ever-evolving sexuality, deepening my switchiness while honoring and exercising my submissive core, and following the positive energy.

If you’d like to join me for any part of this in 2017, message me. Let’s see what we can discover together.

A year of evolving love and kink

So. 2016 was fucking rough. If you’re one of the few people for whom it wasn’t rough, mazel tov and I’m incredibly happy for you. I hope for more good things for you in 2017. But for me? And many of the people I love and are close to? 2016 was massive What The Fucking Fuck year. It tore through with a staggering number of celebrity deaths, unprecedented change, massive amounts of life shifts, and some of the worst pain, confusion, and turmoil I’ve had to go through in years. I would like there to be less of those things, please, in the coming year. While I do understand the learning experience value of these things, and that the cycle of life also includes death, it would be nice to balance things out a little.

I will honor the bad things that happened as part of the journey. However, I want to focus on the good to direct my future journey. In that regard, most of the good things that happened in my life centered around poly and kink, so I’m going to celebrate those.

In my resolution post from last year, I set forth to rejoin the kink scene/community among other things. My overarching goal was to get back in the swing of things, so to speak. And I did almost everything on that list under the kink section, and then some.

  • Joined the (then local) scene in Memphis, became a member of the local dungeon, went to events, played, and learned. I also slowly started to rejoin the New Jersey scene.
  • Rediscovered my love for rose flogging and then proceeded to rose flog a bunch of people that I care about over the course of a few months, culminating, for me, in my first ever duel rose flogging scene at the close of the dungeon to “Bohemian Rhapsody” at GKE Classic. Which was a BLAST.
  • Even though it was scary as fuck, and some parts of the journey were bumpy as fuck, in February, I reached out to someone who would eventually become my Sir. We’ve spent almost a year building a relationship that works for us which is evolving, flexible, and a constant surprise to me. I look forward to seeing what the new year will bring for us.
  • I had some great (and some really shocking – in the good way) make out sessions and my ideas of what my sexuality is continue to morph. Demisexual doesn’t fit anymore and I’m not so sure about gray ace, either. What I do know is that I’m far more interested in sex than I used to be, but still with a fairly limited pool of people.
  • My husband and I embarked on shifting to becoming anarchical poly instead of hierarchical. There have been some challenges, but overall, it seems to be best for both of us. For me personally, it’s the only thing that makes sense anymore.
  • With help, I got over two fears regarding submission. One, and the scariest one in general, was the fear that I wouldn’t be able to submit anymore. And/or that I was no good and/or too old. And/or out of practice. That I wouldn’t be able to get to the head space I had been waiting to get to for years. Two, being afraid to submit in public at an event where I had a managerial role. With Sir’s help in both regards, I was able to, in the same scene, drop further than I have in nearly five years and find a pocket of off duty time to submit in public. Transcendent doesn’t even begin to cover that experience.
  • Experienced fire play for the first time.
  • Experienced sadistic fire play for the first time. Holy hell, I need more of both of those in my life.
  • Did needle play for the first time and then went on to set up a needle play play date, both of which were awesome.
  • Hit K&P on Fetlife for the first time ever for one of my poly writings. That was an amazing feeling.
  • Dealt with difficulties I had re: poly by talking and writing them out. Or I could say: Jealousy…now with a whole lot more helpful words and only minimal bottling and fear!
  • Rekindled a connection with a dear partner.
  • Rediscovered my complete and utter adoration of being punched in the back.
  • Rediscovered my complete and utter adoration of bruises from being punched in the back. One weekend, after a really good punching, every time someone hugged me at the event I was at, it was the most painfully delicious reminder.
  • Saw anarchical poly evolving amongst my partners and metamours and had moments of such compersion and sheer astonishment and gratitude that things were…working. Like, there was more than once where I found myself going, “holy shit…this can all work. People are getting time together, and having fun, and I’m getting time and having fun, and the compersion is building and we’re all handling our shit and talking things out. Hot DAMN.”
  • Tried to pull back from over-labeling everything and let each relationship I’m in seek it’s own level. Including meeting new people or getting to know people I already knew and discovering new feelings for, and eventually, gradually learning that they don’t have to fit into the boxes I’m used to people fitting into.
  • Made a concerted effort to get to know my metamours better. Haven’t gotten to know all of them yet, but in the process, I’ve made at least one great friend and discovered some really cool people who are fun to talk to and spend time with, and who have the potential to become friends. At least I hope so.
  • Started going to Leather events more. I really, really like Leather events from what I’ve seen and witnessed so far.
  • Asked for what I wanted more.

To me, this seems like a damn impressive list of good stuff and I’m hella grateful for these experiences and the people involved in them. My hope is to continue to learn, grow, and have more adventures in 2017. I’m working on a poly/kink bucket list for the new year but for right now, it felt important to get out some of these positive things and lead into the new year cultivating the good, carrying it forward, and building from it.

Comparisons: The Poly Pitfall of Doom

You know one of the quickest ways to tank your self esteem as a poly person? Start comparing yourself to any of your metamours or things your partner(s) are doing with other partners.

And yet, I’ve fallen into that trap waaaaaay more times than I care to count. Today alone.

Just kidding. That was yesterday. Today it’s only happened a little.

It sucks. Because reason tells me that I know better than this. All I’ve read and written and experienced tells me, for the most part, better than this.

And yet, there are times when I can’t see past it. Past the fear, the panic, the “are they better than me?” Sexier? Kinkier? More flexible? And if they are, the root of it….am I going to be left behind?

This is probably the pit my brain tosses myself into headlong most frequently. Therapists and I have theorized about an abandonment complex based on things from my past when I was younger and people who were supposed to care about me dropped off the face of the earth when I was younger. In the span of about four years, my mother disappeared, my sister went off to college, my aunt and uncle, whom I used to see every other weekend along with my cousins who were like my little brothers, stopped seeing me and calling me, my grandfather stopped contacting me. Hell, even the guitar teacher I had just…stopped. This was from was from when I was eight until I was twelve. And yeah, I spent many years obsessing, wondering, afraid. What did I do wrong? What could I have done better? What could I have done to have made them stay?

The answer(s)? Nothing. Nothing. And nothing.

I know this now, after many years have passed and conversations have happened.

But on the other hand, people have told me I’m “too much”. I think too much, feel too much, laugh too loudly, get into hobbies too deeply, am too dramatic. So I’ve retreated sometimes. I’ve been worried about what I say, what I do, if it’s too much. If I’m too much.

Conversely, my brain also tells me I’m not enough. I’m not enough to for people to want…anything from. Not sexy enough, or attractive enough, or kinky enough, or interesting enough, or competent enough, or intelligent enough, or witty enough. I fight feeling like I’m failing at everything….my job, relationships, writing, life. It’s hard to see the things I’ve done right while the things I’ve done wrong scream at me.

Add metamours into this mix and sometimes, my brain sometimes goes haywire.

Here’s the thing. I actively chose and continue to choose to be in open relationships. After over 15 years, I know this is how I’m wired. It just makes sense to me to love more than one person. And that love can come in many different shapes and forms. I err more towards relationship anarchy style of poly these day, in that I do not want to tell my partners what they can or can’t do with other people and I don’t ever want anyone to tell me what I can and can’t do with other people. And most times, I love hearing fun stories of scenes that other partners have done, or fun experiences. I can usually do compersion like a mofo.

And yet. That pesky “and yet” slams me upside the heart and I’m gone.

I’ll think of a metamour, especially a new one (because new ones are waaaay harder to process than existing ones, most times), and go….fuuuuuuuucccckkkkk. They’re hot. Which, for some reason, suddenly means I’m not. They’re into things I’m not. Which suddenly, for some reason, means that I’m less valuable or interesting. They see said partner more than I do. Which suddenly diminishes the time I spend with that partner. All of the things I am and do and are interested in suddenly, in my stupid, stupid brain, are warring to be both not good enough and too much. Because that’s a thing that my brain can magically maintain.

Because it’s easier to beat myself up than to just understand that a new person does not automatically mean I lose.

Because a partner having NRE or wanting to see someone he hasn’t seen in months makes it feel like our communication is less/different and I feel like I’m kind of all alone. Add to the mix when life is crazy hella hectic and I’m at a touch and sex and play deficiency and suddenly everyone becomes competition. Suddenly, I’m afraid of losing everything.

Two of the best ways I’ve found to combat this are to talk and to focus solely on my relationship with my partner, not their relationship with anyone else. That latter one came from this gem of an article I read about a month ago called “Change your Cookbook: A monogamuggle’s guide to cookin’ with polyfolk”. (side note: I love that some of the best poly advice I’ve ever gotten comes from a monogamuggle. Also, I love the term “monogamuggle”.)

When it comes to talking, I’m finding that talking to partners is one thing. And that can be incredibly helpful. I mean, if you’re focusing on your relationship with your partner and you feel like they’ve been pulling back or things have changed, checking in with them is a good idea. But the best people I’ve found to talk to? The metamours themselves.

This used to scare the ever-lovin’ fuck out of me. Talk to the people that must be better than me? That might be taking my partner away? But…that seems impossible and painful. Like the bad kind of masochism. And that’s coming from an emotional masochist.

Funny thing, though? Metamours are fucking awesome. And when you start talking to the them, sometimes, you wind up having conversations with them and you find that you’re way more alike than you are different. You learn that they have similar hobbies, interests, and are really cool people. You also sometimes discover that they have similar insecurities or struggles and then you are gobsmacked but feel way less alone. They’re not trying to take everything away from you. They’re agenda is exactly the same as yours…to love, to have fun, and to enjoy time with the person you both care about. Because that makes sense, right? Isn’t that what this is all about?

And there’s time and space for all of these things to happen. And sometimes, you wind up wanting to hang out with them…like, without your partner! And sometimes you even are able to and suddenly you’ve made new friends and holy shit kitchen table poly can work.

This may or may not’ve happened to me a few times. And yet…each time it surprises me. But in that good way. Like, right. I don’t have to torture myself with horrible thoughts of being left and sad. The reality is way different than my fears and anxiety keep trying to tell me sometimes.

So those are two ways I’ve found to help quell the brain beasts. Does anyone else have any other advice on how to deal with this damn pitfall? I’d love to hear it, if so.

It’s National “Don’t Be Nice To Me” Day

Title and idea shamelessly stolen (with encouragement!) from Ferrett Steinmetz.

Full text of his original post in case you don’t like clicking links:

Yesterday, I posted a sad status that said:

Feeling isolated and alone today. Nobody did anything wrong. I just woke up this morning wreathed in failure. #brainweasels

And I was beswarmed in kind comments. Something like twenty people replied, others sent kind messages, and still others texted me to send love. Which is all wonderful, and I appreciate that, but…

I’ve got a good support system. I have my bad days, but when I have them, I also have thousands of people on my social networks who are willing to sympathize.

Others don’t.

So I am declaring today “National ‘Don’t Be Nice To Me’ Day – and what I’d like you to do today is to reach out to someone who doesn’t necessarily have a great support network and tell them you’re thinking of them. Or reach out to someone who’s having a hard time and hasn’t, for whatever reason, been able to post online to get the support they deserve.

Basically, take the kindness you were willing to show to me yesterday and use that to surprise someone else with love. Don’t tell ’em why you did it, don’t explain what today is – just text them or @ them or DM them to tell them “Hey, you know what? I’m here for you.”

And if you feel like posting this elsewhere on your blog/social media/whatever, thus converting the latent kindness people feel for you into active kindness for other people? Awesome.

Because any excuse to be nice to someone else is a great excuse.

Don’t be nice to me today.

Be great to someone else.

I wholeheartedly support this idea. I have a pretty darn good support network looking after me and helping me. So any support you or kindness you were gonna throw my way, throw it to someone else today. Just love people, ‘kay? And show them that you love them. Effort and affection and support mean a lot.

As a great philosopher once said, “Be excellent to each other.”

Reminders

“We have no idea what other lands lie beyond the great waters. We must take our chances on the waves and scatter like seeds before the wind. We will take the memory of the good times…and for those darkest of times, we will take what we can of the light.”

-From “Sing” the movie musical, 1989

Sometimes, I need help remembering balance. So I tell myself:

When you’re lost, linger in the shining moments of careening down a 10 story spiral slide.

When you’re numb, savor the gift of bruises that kept on giving.

When you’re thirsty, drink in the sweet sensation of sharp items piercing your skin.

When you’re overwhelmed in bad ways, call up the precise moments of being overwhelmed in delicious ways.

When you’re cold, wrap the memory of fire around you.

When you’re lonely, remember how compersion, touch, desire felt.

When you’re sad, think about the endless laughter of a new connection.

When you’re jealous, know that you are now in places and with people you only wished for days/months/years ago. There’s more to come and you’ll find your own levels. Let others seek their own. Respect autonomy, your own and theirs.

When goodbyes get to be too hard, embrace the grief with a graceful head up and heart open and know that there are also hellos happening, too.

When you’re daunted by change, remind yourself of all the positive things and people and opportunities that change has brought into your life in the past few years and that those things didn’t always come via the easy path.

When things start looking bleak and full of boxes, bathe in the brilliant spray of rose petals.

Remember that it all can and has worked. There have been so many bright spots over the past few weeks, so many new experiences, so much good. Hold onto that until more goodness comes around.

And find joy where ever you can. It’s there. It’s just hiding a little right now. Coax out the everyday joy from its hiding places. Let yourself sift through the past while staying grounded in the present. It’s okay to be lost, numb, thirsty, overwhelmed, cold, lonely, sad, jealous, daunted, and bleak…sometimes.

Change can be difficult. But it brings new growth. New opportunities.

Remember.

And love. And live.

There’s more happy, more experiences, more connection to be had.

Promise.

Voices In My Head: Then and Now

Once upon a time, there was a little girl whose father drank. He drank so much that sometimes, he couldn’t make it home without help. This help came in the form of other adults, like his girlfriend, waking up the little girl in the middle of the night and telling her that she had to go get her father to come home. She was often the only one who could convince him to do it. The little girl dreaded these nights because they at least meant seeing her father in ways she didn’t want. Ways that scared her. Passed out at his desk. Sad. Crying. Yelling. Punching. But the voices told her it would be okay. He would never hurt her. She just had to make him come home. Usually by telling him that he had to say prayers so she could go (back) to sleep.

She heard so many arguments, those nights. Sometimes the voices could get him into a different car, looking small and dejected. Other times, though, he wouldn’t go in a different car. He wanted to drive home because he was worried about leaving his car/truck there. His car/truck was very important. That’s when the voices told her that she should go with him. “To make sure he got home okay.” At nine years old, she didn’t know how to drive. But she always managed to white-knuckle it home from her place beside him, keeping him alert. They always got home. Whether it was from his shop a few blocks away or another state. They only once almost hit a tree coming into the driveway. Only once almost crashed into an underpass pillar.

Those voices didn’t care if she was scared. They didn’t care if she said, “no.” They didn’t care about anything but making their lives easier. She was told there was nothing to be afraid of. That she was overreacting. She learned not to talk about what she wanted because no one would listen. She learned not to cry. She learned to numb her feelings because they didn’t matter. She then learned to eat the feelings, because sugar made her feel something that was like happy, however shortly.

Her father told her that if he wasn’t so stressed, he wouldn’t drink. The little girl spent years trying to be perfect. Getting good grades, not getting into trouble, making sure her father got home okay. Trying to be perfect. Taking care of those who were supposed to take care of her.

Then the little girl grew up and spent years in therapy, gradually learning it wasn’t her fault. For a very long time, though, she got scared around people who drank. She avoided parties where there was alcohol. She didn’t drink alcohol herself until well into her twenties. It took having a boyfriend who understood how scared she was. It took a slow, safe introduction to people drinking to teach her that drinking didn’t have to be traumatic. It took a steady journey of small, successful tries. A few sips of a pretty drink. Next, a whole one. She was nearly thirty before she was able to let go enough and feel safe enough to actually get drunk.

A lingering factor, though, was that she still ate her feelings. Usually with sugary things and especially chocolate. It was a way she could feel better, happier, calmer without losing control. Combined with two hormonal conditions, however, it was also a way that she put and kept on weight. But she was “safe”.

For the most part, she had moved on. She had healed. She wrote a short story about her late night “death rides” and sold it to a magazine for young adults. She felt better. Like maybe she helped other kids who had alcoholic parents. Her therapists told her she had PTSD, but the episodes became fewer and further between. She thought she had processed and dealt with her past.

She hadn’t been triggered in years.

One day, she found herself confronted with the perfect combination of whiskey and belligerence right across the table from her. She felt crazy. This couldn’t be happening. She had to be misunderstanding. This person wouldn’t do this. She trusted this person.

The voices came back.

Telling her it didn’t matter how she felt. The person across the table wanted her to do something and that was all that mattered. They kept saying it. Insisting that she talk about difficult things from the past. Demanding that the other person at the table tell her why those things from the past were fucked up. It didn’t matter how she felt. That she knew they were fucked up and that she had come to terms with them in her own way. The old voices told her that she couldn’t say, “no” or “stop”. She just had to stay calm and push all the panic and anger and fear away. Getting upset never worked. Because it never mattered.

However, this time….this time, other voices were surfacing. Voices from after she was grown up. Voices from people who know how to love in healthier ways. Voices from this past year, especially, which has been full of explosive growth and change.

A voice that told her she was far less powerless than she felt and to hold tightly to that. That she had grown into a powerful, strong woman with a voice that helps people, and has found love and passion in uncommon ways, has built the life she always wanted with an amazing array of people who love and support her, and whom she is privileged to love and support.

Then a voice that told her she could get out of this situation. She had people she could call. Hell, if nothing else, a small voice said Uber would be happy to pick her up. But with a single text to a dear friend, she had a ride home. She did not have to get in the car with anyone she did not want to. Someone was coming to get her and when they did, they let her talk in her own time and didn’t tell her she was wrong or overreacting.

With a single phone call, a calming voice gave her a lifeline to hold onto, didn’t demand to know what was going on when she said she didn’t want to go into it and just needed to hear their voice while she waited for the ride so she didn’t break down completely.

Another voice said that it was concerned about her desire to drive over an hour to get good chocolate to stave off the PTSD episodes over the next few days, but that voice said they understood, given the severity of the situation.

Which kicked off the next voice, of a close friend who said she’d read research that said that when you’re craving chocolate, usually you’re dehydrated so drink water.

Which spurred the next voice, one from an impromptu, unexpected correction scene where I was ordered to kneel for ten minutes holding a glass of water because “maybe this will help [me] remember the importance of hydration.”

The last voice that came in was a dear friend I’ve known for nearly twenty years, who told me over tea that the best advice she ever got (in reference to a painful part of her life) was to simply feel what she was feeling. Simple. Not easy. Don’t bottle it, repress it, or try to cover it up. Let it ride.

Which is how I found myself deciding not to go the chocolate shoppe, and instead, got two bottles of water at a nearby pharmacy and drove back home, where I proceeded to cry and let myself feel the terror and sadness and madness and helplessness and raging questions of “why doesn’t anyone care?!” and “why don’t I matter?!”

And somewhere in there I realized that I do matter. All of those voices that have haunted me were gradually being drowned out by the new ones. The stronger ones. They all belonged to people who care. People who have told me that…I matter to them. Reconciling this, thinking about the juxtaposition of the voices that led to this post, made me see something that I don’t want to forget.

I matter to me and I care about me and I made the choice to get myself out of that situation in the best way I could. I did so with the help of some amazing people, all of whom I’m sometimes still stunned and very grateful are in my life.

The past is over and I won’t live there anymore. And even though it’s left scars that come screaming back to life for brief bursts in the form of the vicious bitch goddess called PTSD, the voices in my head now and the people in my life now are helping me to fucking shout the past down while walking forward to a better life.

Is polyamory worth it?

It’s been a long standing joke in my family (both blood and chosen) that my life is anything but simple. I’m kind of the black sheep, tending to gravitate towards experiences, interests, and people that are complex. I’m the one who taught my very vanilla sister about the separate subjects of furries (which was great, because she was able to be a safe person to talk to when she found out one of her co-workers was a furry), polyamory, and kink (and how no, the latter is not always about sex and for me it very seldomly is about sex at all, and no, my kink does not involve being a lamppost. True conversations.) I’m the one who broadened my dad’s world when I handed him an invitation to my poly wedding (two coming outs in one awkward card, as he didn’t know I was poly or pansexual!) I have this blog where I write publicly about being kinky, being poly, taking my clothes off in front of strangers, body image, sex, random cum stains in the shape of Pacman that amuse me and how that related to a happy compersion poly moment, and openly admit to being a cuckquean.

Sometimes…okay a lot of times, and especially over the past few months, being the black sheep and not able to just do or feel uncomplicated things hurts. When you don’t fall under the umbrella of social expectation, you kind of have to navigate your own way around instead of relying on what society in general tells you. While this touches on all parts of my life, from my job(s), to my kink drive, to the way I dress, and so much more, it’s never so apparent to me as when I consider love.

Recently, I may or may not’ve wound up driving and crying with my sister because while she’s vanilla as hell, she loves me and listens unconditionally. And the last two months or so have been…hard. Through a combination of life and work stressors, issues with metamours, and feeling unable to find support and connection with the certain people I either usually do or was hoping to, I’ve been a bit upset and floundering. Ever since May, it feels like I’ve leveled up in life, but with that comes an entirely new world that I’m unfamiliar with. There’s some advanced/complicated poly stuff going on, in addition to navigating a cross country move for work, in addition to my submissive and Domme sides resurfacing again in major ways and it’s all been really, really hard to deal with sometimes.

And during this drive with my sister that may or may not’ve happened, she asked me a very pointed question:

“Are you sure polyamory is worth all this pain?”

I could tell she wasn’t just asking about my current situation. She knows what I went through in my triad marriage and when it ended, in addition to my other poly relationships. To her, a woman who’s been married to the same man for 20 years, what I was going through seemed so foreign and complex. A simple choice could fix it. I paused, tears streaming down my face, nose running, heart aching, and gave the question its due even while my core was screaming its answer.

But before I get to my answer, though, let me reference a post Ferrett recently wrote that made me tear up. He talked about driving three hours to hold his girlfriend’s hand before she went into surgery. And how when the medical staff asked who she had waiting for her, she replied honestly that it was her husband…AND her boyfriend. Which flummoxed the staff to the point where, instead of continually repeating herself, she just wound up summarizing with “‘Look, I lead an alternative lifestyle, all right?'”

This hit him hard, as evidenced by the entirety of the post. It, in turn, had a pretty big impact on me. Because he goes on to talk about all the times we don’t talk about these alternative choices, especially, if you’re poly or kinky or both, who we love.

These paragraphs, specifically, were what brought me to tears:

Yet my girlfriend did not give a fuck. She was exhausted, and tired, and when she was stripped raw the last thing she wanted to give up was to acknowledge the love that was sitting out there in that lobby for her and fuck, I’m crying now.

But it’s a moment. It’s a moment where her don’t-give-a-fuck punched a hole through to another world where I saw what it might be like not to have really good reasons not to just be buried under a tide of assumptions, and in that moment our love felt realer than it ever had before, this thing where yeah, we don’t live together and we’re never going to get married and we’ll never have once-a-week dates and all the traditional pathways designated as “serious about each other” somehow didn’t fucking matter.

We don’t call each other, but I’ll drive out to hold her hand when she needs me.

We only get to see each other once every couple of months, but she’ll fucking face down a bunch of surgeons in the place of her to tell them, Give that man respect for what he is.

Between that post and the post he wrote called “Yes, of course” about his wife’s reaction to him driving three hours out to be with his girlfriend when she went into surgery, I just…felt a recognition. I know what my answer is. I’ve always known. And recently, despite or maybe even because of the pain I’ve been going through, I feel I finally found where I want to be with relationships.

Yes, it’s fucking worth it.

It’s taken me nearly 15 years to get to a place of polyamory that’s basically relationship anarchy/fluid (not to imply that it’s more evolved, it’s just that it’s where I evolved to) and yes, it’s fucking worth it. I want and actively chose this support network of complex ties and feelings and yes, love, in its many shapes and forms. I don’t always have to know how to define a particular relationship, but I sure as hell know when I love someone and all the tears are worth being able to say it and hear it back.

The feeling of making a new connection and exploring it and finding and developing another piece of myself with another person is totally worth the half a box of tissues I went through that night.

When I get on a plane, there are about five or six people that know when I take off and when I land and those people also are told that I love them. I’m not “in a relationship” with all of them, and I don’t even know how the hell to define all of them, but I know they are important to me and I to them and if I’m staring down mortality, I want that to be known. I want love to be the thing I focus on, not fear. And it’s actually been part of what helps me get over some residual anxiety when it comes to flying. That’s totally worth frustrating interactions with a metamour.

The poly and kinky support network I’ve built over the years that spans nearly ten different states and a fuckton of people, the books and articles I’ve read, the conversations I’ve had sorting through my own shit or helping someone else sort through theirs is totally worth the pain of break ups, of sifting through complex emotions, or being stood up.

I mean, it’s not the structure itself that causes the hurt. When I got divorced from my poly triad, I was asked why I would continue to be polyamorous after all that pain and I replied that polyamory wasn’t to blame for my relationship ending any more or less than monogamy is the reason for monogamous divorces. It’s not the relationship style, it’s the people involved. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. That’s universal. No relationship style that I know of is immune to…humanity and its wondrous variety.

And on the flip side are moments like my husband texting me today that he thinks the person at the deli where he ate lunch is totally my type. Or the compersion of seeing someone I care about twitterpated with NRE over a connection with someone new. Or when my husband came home today and I told him that I had spent some of my day negotiating to do a needle scene at GKENE and he made up a little song to the tune of “I’ll Be There” by the Jackson 5. However for him, since he doesn’t like needle play, it went more like this (complete with chair dance choreography and him spinning me in my desk chair):

You and I must make a pact, when he’s putting needles in your back
When that’s happening, I won’t be there…

That freedom to explore who I am, who I love, and what I want at my own pace, at my own comfort level, with the people I choose to, and the beautifully complex tapestry of people and experiences that ensue, including impromptu chair dances, are totally fucking worth it.