They don’t really fit the traditional mold of happy poly moments, but some things converged last week to make me feel like I am back on track:
- Since I’ve known for a while that some (not all) of the troubles between us could be solved with, like, a half-hour conversation and I was having a hankering to watch Mystery Science Theater 3000 and be excellently fucked, I asked the Mayor of Kittentown for some snuggles. He was happy to be asked but says his new relationship doesn’t allow for extracurricular snuggles. It’s hard to let him go for real, but I’m glad to know that there’s at least one guy that I still trust enough to ask for what I want. And! I get a gold star for asking. I hope that MKT and I can keep a friendship going, even if being on his couch isn’t appropriate anymore. And! I’m really happy that his relationship is getting closer, even if it means no snuggles for me.
- This one won’t seem happy at first, but bear with me: I’m still really sad that my therapist is on maternity leave, and the interim lady didn’t work out—I felt frustrated, confused, and panicky to the point where the interim lady asked her supervisor to intercede. The supervisor lady gave me two very nice gifts: First, she helped me understand that my bond with my regular therapist is really deep and it’s okay to not want to do therapy with anyone else. Supervisor lady asked me to imagine that my real therapist was sitting next to me and to find that sensation in my body—it was in my heart, and that made me cry my eyes out some more.
I think that experience was really important because what I’m really learning here is how to not be freaked out by attachment. Often when I try to fight attachment, it comes out as anger, resentment, fear, a real feeling of being trapped. Once I realized it was okay to have a bond, the pressure was released and I could happily take the summer off from therapy.
The other cool thing that that the supervisor lady told me was to get a pretty notebook and write letters to my therapist while she’s gone. While it makes me feel like a genuine crazy person, it really works—in fact, I decided to use it to write to other people I can’t currently talk to—it’s a relief to be able to parse out all of the emotions instead of being overwhelmed by them. Most of the letters, I won’t share or send, but it makes me feel better and like it is safer to be connected to people. It helps me to experience some of the attachments I have been fighting in a way that doesn’t force me to confront or disrupt anything—it’s another way to help myself learn love.
- Over the weekend, I went to a couple of talks that were really helpful and inspiring. The first one was a talk on seeing kink through the lens of feminism. I looked forward to it so much that it kind of made my week. I don’t think that there’s anything inherently anti-feminist about kink, but I have wished for a while to have more friends who see BDSM from a feminist perspective. On the way there, I got caught in a romantic-comedy-level downpour—I was soaked down to my underwear and laughing my head off—I felt like I was on a very good date with myself. (Thank goodness Sweetie and I had a date for afterwards so she could bring me a change of clothes.)
While I sat there shivering, I was so happy to hear people’s questions and stories, and it was wonderful to feel safe to tell my story without fear of being seen as a bad girl. (At least, not a bad girl in a bad way!) I realized that the key to making more safety for myself in the local BDSM community is to spend more time forming friendships, so I won’t end up in the power-imbalance that automatically comes with being an outsider. So I offered to be folks’ munch-going pal, and I am so proud that the workshop’s facilitator took me up on it—she’s accomplished so many of the things that I dream about and she’s a fellow badass feminist bottom, so I think she’ll be a good influence. Wonder what her cute nickname will be!
The other talk that I liked so much was a talk on beginning polyamory. I love the way that my body relaxes itself when I am in poly company—my shoulders get warm and my heart floods with well-being—I really should do this more often.
My favorite thing that I heard in that talk was from a gentleman friend of mine, one of the most romantic souls I know. He said that one of the ways he knew that he was poly is that he just doesn’t get over people—they just stay in his heart. He knew he had room for more that one person in his heart because people just stay in there. I love that idea. It’s certainly a more positive way to look at my own never-getting–over-people, even if I do get frustrated from time to time with who takes up my heart real estate.
- And speaking of heart real estate, in my letters-I-probably-won’t-send notebook, I sat down and wrote a letter to Fireguy. It made me realize something that will probably seem obvious to everyone else, (it sure wasn’t a surprise to Sweetie)—I loved Fireguy. I even loved Varga Girl in an aspiring-to-be-a-metamour kind of way. Though there isn’t much I can do with that love, acknowledging it is a relief and a release.
There was a moment during our public fire scene where he looked down at my face with such a look of approval that I felt like a perfect little angel. I had never felt that from a male authority figure before, and it struck me so deep. That’s why it’s so hard to stay away from him, even though we weren’t a good match. I forgive myself for the compromises I made, for all the hurt we all went through, I forgive myself for the fact that that feeling was so powerful that I couldn’t resist it. I hope to feel it again some day, in a healthier way.
We’re having a Charlie Kaufman movie marathon over here lately, and this scene from Adaptation has really been sticking with me. “I can love whoever I want.”