Monday, January 13, 2014

Single Life, Week Six: Antsy But Enjoying the New Goals

Last weekend, I told my therapist that sessions might be boring for a while, and that’s how it might be with the blog, too. (Though adventures must not have been particularly unboring when I was hitting the same patterns again and again…) Anyway, I’m supposed to be mostly taking a three month break from sexytimes. In a way, it’s liberating, not having to worry about making plans or scheduling dates, and maybe letting the (already pretty lax) shaving routine lapse a little bit.

But since even in this hard transition I am still my horny, half-extroverted self, I feel antsy. The adrenaline of the past couple of years, though not always healthy, kept me fueled and inspired most of the time, and now I have to look for quieter, more sustainable forms of inspiration. I’m a little afraid that if I let myself rest for these few months I’ll suddenly wake up 60 with no one but cats. It’s the stupidest of tropes, but there it is anyway.

I know where the next adventure’s coming from: there’s a big poly conference coming up soon. And I don’t think I’ll be away from the dungeon forever—I’d thought I was probably graduated from there, but this morning when I saw the invite in my Fet inbox I felt a little surge of joy—right before I RSVPed no. In pursuit of this break-taking goal, I now even have a friend who’ll text me a gold star any time I RSVP no or just stay home in my PJs for any reason. It’s nice how the right influences tend to come along.

The story now is about self-care and about slow, safe progress. One big obstacle-removal is that Sweetie got a promotion and now works closer to home, allowing her to fully take over the car payments so that I can save up for a car of my own. Yay my future little red car! Trading the car back and forth has been a too-often chance to see each other, and that’s getting dicey. Plus, pretty soon I will never again have to drive the car that I jumped out of.

In some ways, it’s getting harder to let Sweetie go. Now that she’s free from her terrible commute and the job she hated, she’s getting frustratingly appealing. I’ve had to stop having her over for TV because the other night I got the biggest urge to hold her hands during some Community reruns. As the pain of the bad parts starts to heal, all I can see it the love and it’s hard to move on, even though it’s paradoxically the moving on that brings the appeal. It makes me both reluctant to and impatient to get further and further apart. Sometimes we still do groceries together but it ends up feeling like a date, so I guess we’ll have to knock that off too.

The big excitements of the past week or so have been little acts of self-care: staying late on Friday to give my Monday-morning self a break by getting the homework packets ready. Remembering to buy batteries, adding DVDs to my Netflix account so that I can have better movie nights. The big social adventures have been after-church brunches that have made my heart so happy and full. (Resolution with the Cute Church couple: “Waffles in ‘014!”)

Slowing down has given me the chance to do what I always wanted to do: feel all the feelings. I feel sadness at letting go of Cute Master and Pretty Slave, but a happy hope that I’ve left a pattern behind. I feel nervous excitement at making new neighborhood friends and navigating social situations at which I have pants on. I feel frustration, of course, at being away from sex adventures, but pleasure in knowing that I’m the only one I have to please.

I vacillate between shyness at the year’s goals and wanting to show them off, but I like the way you guys help me keep myself accountable. The theme of the year is kindness to myself, which I know will make some friends and readers (and also, me) sigh with relief. It’s fun thinking of new ways to care for myself, to reach out to people closer to home, to look for magic in the world, to try (though I’ve always had a nice time keeping it at arm’s length) to embrace my faith.

I’m still smarting from everything I’ve let go, but sometimes when I’m washing the dishes or making the bed or cooking myself breakfast for dinner, I feel the odd sensation of liking myself. It’s a real thing and I think I can learn it.

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