They Can't Take That Away From Me

Man. I’m a nostalgic mf’er these last couple of days.  I made it past my old anniversary without thinking of it.  Part of it is that I’m not really paying attention to the date, what with being on summer break. Part of it is that I think it FINALLY settled. I don’t feel the strong hurt I felt around my divorce, and the way my ex acted. I don’t worry about him as much. I even sort of accept my daughters not being in my life.  It sucked. Of course it sucked. But it is what it is. It’s sad that it ended the way it did, and sad that my ex was that person.

But.. I’m okay, and I’ve been okay for a long time now. The wounds are old.  I’m not saying they’re perfect, but they don’t sting.  A few weeks ago I teared up in the kitchen with Quinky and Traveler. A song Evan loved came on and I hadn’t heard it since we’d parted and I teared up. I realized it was the first time in a long time that I’d teared up about him.  I teared up more maybe because it was a moment when I remembered how much we loved each other, dancing in the kitchen.  I don’t really think about him much, and I don’t think about how we were really at all these days.  I’ve fallen in love again, and I’m a lot happier most of the time.  I love my ex because it’s the way I am built. But it doesn’t hurt anymore.  It’s more just that I hope he’s happy.

I think it’s healthy sometimes when long deep loves change.  In monogamy we stay because of duty, and security, and comfort. In poly sometimes we don’t acknowledge a relationship that isn’t whole. It can hobble along indefinitely because nobody has to be EVERYTHING to anybody, but really because it can be a crutch for not looking at how we love and are loved by THIS one person and how it’s not a whole or functional relationship. Other people fill serious gaps. Continue reading

Difficult to Love

I have to admit that all my reading and writing has belonged to grad school, but I’m here and I’m thinking of you.  I do a lot of thinking these days.  I can’t stop thinking about this tonight.  I talked to a friend going through a break up from a terrible man, and this kept running in my head.


<p><a href=”https://vimeo.com/38766162″>Warsan Shire – &quot;For Women Who Are Difficult To Love&quot;</a> from <a href=”https://vimeo.com/movingonworks”>MovingOn</a&gt; on <a href=”https://vimeo.com”>Vimeo</a&gt;.</p>

You are a horse running alone
and he tries to tame you
compares you to an impossible highway
to a burning house
says you are blinding him
that he could never leave you
forget you
want anything but you
you dizzy him, you are unbearable
every woman before or after you
is doused in your name
you fill his mouth
his teeth ache with memory of taste
his body just a long shadow seeking yours
but you are always too intense
frightening in the way you want him
unashamed and sacrificial
he tells you that no man can live up to the one who
lives in your head
and you tried to change didn’t you?

closed your mouth more
tried to be softer
prettier
less volatile, less awake
but even when sleeping you could feel
him traveling away from you in his dreams
so what did you want to do love
split his head open?
you can’t make homes out of human beings
someone should have already told you that
and if he wants to leave
then let him leave
you are terrifying
and strange and beautiful
something not everyone knows how to love.

It doesn’t directly relate to my life right now, but I feel it. I have spent my entire life trying to be smaller and easier and simpler and less of a pain.  I can remember, one of my first memories and one of the few of my mother in early childhood, she was suddenly there and her face was evil red and she grabbed my arm and yanked me up by it.  I had been laughing at something.  I found something hysterical.  I have no memory of what it was.  Maybe it was a cartoon or a game I was playing with a doll.  I had been laughing in the sunbeam streaming in the living room window and then suddenly her red angry face was inches from mine as she yelled at me to stop it, that my laughter was too much and would I please just shut up.  And suddenly I was crying wracking silent sobs.  I felt so ashamed and I could see this was making her madder.  I knew I needed to just shut up but I was overwhelmed with tears.  She looked at me like I was a disgusting vile thing and dropped me and walked away.

Another time, playing with friends, we were playing house and I was the mama and my two friends were my kids.  They made me a drawing and brought it to me and I got so overcome in my fake mama role with the joy of their present and their love of me that I rushed to hug them and kiss them.  So charged was I with the intensity of wanting to love on my pretend children, I knocked my friend over and kissed her face over and over again until she shoved me off of her and stood up, infuriated.  “What is WRONG with you!  Jesus.  Holly.  You are too much”.  They both shot me a look and walked out of my room and out of house and away.

My best friend’s birthday party.  I excitedly watched her opening her presents and was thrilled that I had bought the most presents for her and wrapped them all individually in the years of Christmas wrapped paper and home made wrapping I’d decorated.  After a couple of presents people were looking at me funny.  What happened?  What was wrong?  Melissa got up and asked me to go talk.  “That’s so embarrassing.  Why did you do that?  Do you want people to think we are lesbians?  Damn it, Holly.  Too much.

I felt sometimes like everyone had a book about how to be that I didn’t.  I thought for a long time that my mother had left because I was so infuriating.  I thought my father was depressed so much when I was a child because I was a shitty daughter.  He told me he hadn’t been able to meet anyone because of me.  I think he meant being a single father made dating hard, but I heard “because you are defective nobody wants to be your step-mother”.

I tried to be simpler and easier and to care less about everything.  I was a disaster with the first guys I dated and I got hurt.  It happens.  I’ve learned and learned and learned and learned and it’s been HARD work.

But I know I’m still a little difficult to love.  And maybe that’s okay.  Maybe I *am* a little difficult to love, and maybe there will be people, as there have been and are people who are up to the task.  I am a lot, but sometimes people want a lot.  Maybe you are a bit much too, and maybe there are people in your life or in your future that are looking for something a bit much.

 

It's been so long

It’s been so long and time took me far from you here.

Burning man is finally done, or at least the playa part is.  The cleaning up and recovery and putting away is underway.  And it wasn’t anything like what I’d expected.

I’d read a million blogs and spend a million hours pouring over preparations and debating the benefits and detractions of a million tiny choices, and then finally, after months of work getting it together and work on a theme camp and work on a meditation chapel, our gift to the playa, we were there.chapel on playa

To say we worked hard is hilariously inadequate.  This was not a vacation.

Traveler and I worked 18 hour days on average in the dust and sun and heat.  We limped wearily to our camp and often ate and went straight to bed, exhausted and dirty and tired.  We didn’t stink because the desert won’t let anything grow, but it was so harsh our wounds didn’t heal either.  That splinter got infected and that bruise just kept surfacing day after weary day.  Muscles I could not name pulled and snapped and ached.  My temper wore thin and I reacted poorly.  Traveler had his own emotional toil. Quinky Girl too.

Both of them will come to it and to you when they are ready and not a second sooner and I tried to just love them and let them come to me in their own time, respecting the process, but it’s not my strong suit and I wanted to wrap them up with every hurt and cradle them, protecting them from everything.  It was harsh.

The dust is a desiccant and it steals your moisture from your eyes and nose and mouth and skin.  My hands cracked.  My heels bled a little and I wasn’t even wearing sandals.  It was just the blisters.  Nothing survives.  Well, almost nothing.

Storms and dust and wind and bone aching tired I haven’t known except since my Army days.

And it was all so eerily beautiful. Continue reading

Alright already

One of the things I have tried to do here is being unflinchingly honest.  I try to tell the truth, maybe ESPECIALLY, about the things that I feel might make me look bad.  I accidentally found this to be a part of my niche in writing a blog.  So here goes.

I’m lonely once in a while.  It’s hard to be here sometimes and I don’t like it.  The price of loving someone who loves someone else is that they need to spend time with them.  Traveler and Quinky Girl need nights together.  Duh.  Generally this is awesome. I like some alone time in my week.  I can count on one hand the times Traveler and I have spent more than 3 nights a week together, and I can tell you each one was bliss.

But this is a thing us single poly’s can have that our married and cohabitating partners don’t.  I didn’t understand this when I was married and I don’t think a lot of partnered poly’s do.  Not really.

Continue reading

You Just Might Get What You Want

A long time ago RollerGirl said to me “you might have to accept that everything you want might actually be possible, and you might actually get it”.  I’m in a weird place of seeing that this is actually possible, and fearing feeling that.  I’ve been wrong before, clearly.  But I’m seeing that I need to change my perspective on this too.  Is it wrong to trust someone and build something and have lots of love and hope and dreams if it doesn’t equal forever?  If one of the parts of the dream is forever and what you get is most of the other parts of the dream, maybe for years, is is all worthless because it wasn’t forever?  To be fair, I don’t think past relationships that ended were “worthless” but yes, part of me considers the fact that it’s over as evidence that it failed, in a way.  I’m thinking this particular thought might not only be unhelpful… it might just be inaccurate.

doesn't add upOkay, in less pie-in-the-sky musings.. I’m thinking this.  Right now I’m feeling elated and happy and excited that things are going so well.  I’m very happy in my relationships.  Traveler and I talked for the first time in a not abstract way about being a family and a mutual desire to live together someday.  We’ve talked more generally about future dreams before, but this time we talked about US.  It surprised and delighted me.  I loved that he has been thinking about that too.  It made me feel secure in a way, that this is something to him too.  That it’s not just having fun.  He talked about practical things, and I felt a little knot somewhere inside loosen.  Maybe I don’t need to be afraid that I’m out here alone.  Maybe, just maybe, it’s okay to feel all the things I’m feeling and maybe I’m not setting myself up.  This beautiful man, this good kind decent fun simple complex thoughtful man, he might want the things I want too, and he might want them with me.  I don’t know what it would look like and I have no rush to make it happen, but it was a reassurance that we are building something.  It’s not just in my head.  Continue reading

Same Love- Loving Girls

I went to see Macklemore last night and had this kind of spiritual gratitude experience.  I never thought it would happen in my lifetime, but I stood in an arena bursting at the seams with people singing along to a song about about gay rights and acceptance.

Image

Mary Lambert- Singer featured in “Same Love”

This song made the cry the first time I heard it.  Actually I cried the first 6 or 7 times I heard it.  I remember being a 16 year old girl, in my Cleveland, Ohio high school and wondering what the hell it meant that I loved my best friend Kristen.  We’d had a threesome with a guy we both knew, and to her it was a fun sexual experiment, and to me it was finally acknowledging what I’d known since I first kissed Melissa at age 12.  Melissa and I told ourselves we were “practicing for when we had boyfriends”.  I’m not totally sure what we thought our boyfriends would be like that we had to practice eating pussy.  😉Image

I liked girls.  I liked them in a way that other girls didn’t like girls.

Continue reading