Thursday, August 2, 2012

New Heart Goal: Less Calendar Fuss

Resolved: I am going to welcome opportunities to be more flexible with my time.

I loooove to schedule things, both from the necessity of, like everyone else, having a million things going on, and as a way of staving off insecurity, especially when I really like someone. It’s as if I think that writing someone’s name on the calendar means they’ll automatically like me and stick around.

Last week, after Mr. Hazel Eyes texted on Friday to see if we could hang out Saturday, (Um, alas? Sweetie and I already had awesome beach plans.) I started to examine the anxiety that I have about spontaneity. It seems that in the course of my life, all kinds of sexist, sex-negative, pop-psychology nonsense snuck its way into my brain. There’s a cultural norm against being too available if you’re a lady—I did get worried that he was into more of a booty call thing than a..something else, but he was kind enough to reassure me that it wasn’t. (He earned major cuddle-points for that.) (Also, booty call? Thank goodness I did not use that actual term when asking him.) (And! Points to me for asking!)

Back in my early twenties I read The Rules more out of curiosity than for actual advice, but somehow that “make him really ask you out or he won’t want you” thing really stuck. Ten years later I learned that “If he’s not asking you out, he’s just not that into you.” I’m not sure why asking-out only counts if there’s advance notice, but one thing’s for sure: I’ve got to stay away from those dating-advice books. Even if I’m just reading them ironically, they seem to have power.

Bill and I had a real tug of war about the calendar. He kept asking me “Why do you always have to know what’s going to happen?” and I never had a good answer. My now-self is like, “Um, because I have a life?!” He made such a point of dragging his feet about day-choosing, and it was just one of the things he did that made me feel like he didn’t care. He’s a pretty bad example, and probably the source of some of the anxiety. Everyone else I’ve dated and/or played with has been great with planning, so I have no reason to feel self-conscious about preferring it.

I remember hearing somewhere that submissives like to be very oriented, and that is certainly the case with me. I like to be able to picture the time in front of me, to have some idea of what it looks like. It makes things seem more manageable, less hectic. Plus, over the course of this Poly 101 kind of year, the importance of calendars has been emphasized by absolutely every advice-giver, to the point where it’s maybe a little over emphasized in my head. Trying to be a good student as always, I guess.

MHE’s spontaneity triggered an embarrassing fear. For whatever reason, part of me believes that if I let men into my life, it will somehow become unmanageable, that I’ll suddenly be less smart, capable, organized because there’s a dude around. New relationship energy does make me a little scattered and distractible (just ask the midterm I’m glacially writing…) and it makes me feel like I’m going wildly out of control.

It’s time to let go of that control a little. though I am comfortable with preferring to plan, I really need to make room for spontaneity. After all, it’s the dream to have somebody to just be with, without having to plan anything, so, yeah, a little playing it by ear seems like just the thing.

MHE had minor surgery this week and I’m in the middle of packing up the apartment and eventually writing a midterm and going on some tour dates, so I’m not sure when I’ll see him again. I don’t feel too anxious—I think the liking-each-other thing will keep if it’s meant to. Meanwhile, I’m having fun making (and flexibly changing) plans with other nice guys, too. But jeez, I really do want to snuggle him

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