my heart isn’t ready

It’s been a fortnight.

I realised that I had been mourning my relationship before it even officially ended, ignoring verbal protests. When our summer travelling ceased, there were no longer any distractions from facing the rifts that ripped open the very core of what we once meant to each other.

April ’12, Seattle, Washington – photo by Kayleigh


Anchor wasn’t a simpleton. The very act of saying “I don’t think it’s a good idea to continue this relationship” didn’t shock him in any way that I’m aware of; all it yielded was a shrug and a murmur. I also happen to be terribly expressive without talking. I don’t pretend to know or speak for him, but perhaps he had been mourning something too.

The interactions to follow grew tense on both ends, however, and I have made myself scarce.

Food intake and sleep have both been compromised due to going from friend’s place to friend’s place (though I remain grateful for the ability to). I’ve already lost ten pounds.

Looking for a new safe space has proven unsuccessful thus far. I’m not seeking a quick fix solution, but something long-term, sustainable. I still love my job, and I’d be remiss if I didn’t say I was happy for excuses to think about other things for 8+ hours out of the day.

Three years gone. My second longest relationship. There’s only so long I can feign that I’m infallible, and that I’m stronger than all this bollocks, don’t you think?

A few people have asked, “what happened?” Most of them haven’t bothered asking me anything else when I didn’t offer any sordid details. Sometimes things just don’t work out.

I’m not sure what it is about being single that others pick up on. It could be coincidence, but there have been a good deal of incidents lately to suggest otherwise. It’s been… educational.

I won’t lie. I’ve been known as a serial dater. I’ve gone as long as a year without seeing anyone else, but I’ve also lasted as short as an hour or so. An irresponsible hedonist, if you will. That too could be part of the reason for the surge in aggressive activity towards me.

Over the years, it’s been more difficult to take on that persona, especially while in long-term relationships. No discounting the interactions, but three relationships of mine should’ve been established much later than they were, if at all. Time is absolutely necessary to grieve.

I’m attempting forward movement by letting others know that I honestly can’t be arsed to dabble in romance at present. My heart is too tender and I’d be a pretty crap date.

Getting into something too soon would dishonor the positive time spent previously, and would sully the potential of a new beginning. No one needs that, no matter the attraction. I also have a great deal on my plate to square with that would be best served with me single.

May ’12, Tacoma, Washington

Here’s some advice for interaction offline and on: when and if you see me, don’t treat me any differently than you would before, bearing the previous information in mind.

You can talk to me. I may falter a smidge emotionally for a while, but I’m pretty much okay in general and am parallel with my goals for the immediate future and beyond. That’s all.

suppressing sexuality

August ’02, Los Angeles, California

I’ve told people for years that my first kiss was on the 21st August of 2002, the day after my eighteenth birthday, top of the Griffith Observatory. I’ve even believed it, because it’s the more romantic story, the ‘one that counted’.

But that’s not actually true.

My first kiss was at a club in LA when I was about 17, in a washroom. It was someone I was courting at the time, and terribly at that.

Why does this even matter?

Because the subject of the Official First Kiss Story is a man, and the subject of the unofficial story is a woman.

There are still some who will not understand why this is significant, other than it being a first for me. Those who know me personally likely see me as someone who is fairly open with her goings-on, so again, why the big reveal?

 

 

Let’s backtrack a bit.

I came out to one of my parents when I was 15. Not having ever talked at length about anything other than heterosexuality (unless we’re counting “____ is gay, didn’t you know that?”), I fretted over doing so for a while. The few friends I had at school at the time knew before the parent did. The reaction?

“Oh, I went through that stage too.”

Perhaps this was said to assuage me of my worries, and it certainly didn’t add to my anxiety, but I was confused and disappointed simultaneously. Weren’t we supposed to have a conversation about it, like the sex conversation and the puberty conversation in my earlier years?

I went on with my brave efforts. I was convinced that somehow I wasn’t being taken seriously, and I would simply hint at my attractions. However, this seemed to have the converse of the desired effect: my saying that Angeline Jolie in Hackers was cute got absolutely nothing in response. Edgy hairstyles and music (or ones seen as such) had no place in the household.

I wasn’t aware of it then, but I took that as ‘it’s not okay to date women’, without even knowing why it wasn’t.

So I didn’t.

 

 

Of course I bloody well did.

I saw someone in bits and pieces. We’d go to a restaurant, a coffee shop, or the occasional club (which I abhorred) – anywhere we believed allowed for a bit of anonymity.

I got kisses that felt stolen in washrooms, the rare holding of hands. Then I got the brush-off because I found out she not only had a boyfriend, but one with an anger problem to boot.

 

 

I spent a lot of time writing Open Diaries. One account was personal but I didn’t have much going on, so I wrote several others that were based on fictional characters of mine in my written stories. Eventually to spice things up, I blended the accounts so that they had interactions with one another.

Not long after that, I explored meeting more people online for the first time. Mel was colourful and vivacious, and we had a blast making the most mundane tasks interesting (ex: cavorting in grocery stores, making up songs while schlepping round town). Feelings were definitely stirring in me, but Those Feelings Were Verboten. How could I deal with this?

I used one of the Open Diary personalities to interact with her, passed along messages, dropped hints. Eventually that caught up with me, so I fessed up. Unfortunately, I scared her away for good. Hell, she probably still thinks I’m nutters at this rate.

 

 

I lied about so many things as a teenager, but the Open Diary stuff is probably what I regret most. There isn’t a whole lot I can do about that lonely 17-year-old me, especially feeling so far removed from that person at 28.

July ’08, Los Angeles, California

It would take me some years later to let the honesty speak for itself and see and enjoy being with women romantically. I never told my parent about any of it, which likely perpetuated the “it’s a stage” comment. I shudder to think that I had much to do with keeping that idea alive.

 

Sometimes I still sit and wonder what to do, how to properly communicate that not being heterosexual is a key part of me that I cannot and will not ignore. Perhaps I have done so by writing this blog — I do find it easier to have words with others when it’s in text.

It doesn’t matter the subject of the first kiss really, and it shouldn’t matter at all.

What I’ve told you doesn’t discount the Official Kiss Story in any way, shape or form for me, but it does allow me to tell what I feel is the whole truth, at the risk of compromising my relationship with some of my family.

out of the dark

To say ‘it’s not easy letting one person into your life’ is quite the understatement. Truly. 


For many, it’s impossible to let in more than one – a deal breaker, unspeakable, morally wrong, joked about. On the same token, I’ve read articles from seemingly militant polyamorous folks who feel that monogamy is ‘stupid’. (Dan Savage, Monogamy vs Commitment)


It’s a sensitive subject.


I’ll count myself fortunate that the friends who’ve asked about my experiences with multiple partners (and are monogamous) have done so gently and respectfully. I try to answer every question as best as I can, and return that respect.


We humans are notoriously curious, after all; as long as there’s no malice behind the curiosity, what’s the harm in supplying the knowledge?


I cannot and will not in any way claim to be an expert on the matter, though. 


Whether you’re monogamous or not, spending time with each lover is different. Each connection yields a multitude of feelings and lessons. Venturing into one relationship or more blindly is not recommended. (I can tell you that frankly, having unfortunately done so myself. Do yourself a favor – don’t learn this the hard way, please! Study up. Ask questions.)






My last break-up was a rather nasty one. That can’t be denied. Our modes of communication were not working well together and there was stress frequently, which began to affect me elsewhere. With that in mind, I took it upon myself to go slowly next time, at the pace I wanted to go, or one that was at least in sync with others in the relationship.


‘Next time’ came sooner than I expected. I met Shiny Girl briefly at a casual local women’s poly and kink friendly event chatted me up online, which turned into meetings over meals, then watching feel-good movies snuggled up in private. Conversation laced with the occasional smile and nervous tripping over words ensued; generally a good time.


To be honest, I was all ready to distance the interaction at a friendship, but her efforts gave impetus to a deeper-than-surface bond. The more I talked to her, the more I wanted to know.


Shiny Girl’s teaching me what it’s like to be selfless without being entirely aware of it, which is just wonderful. She’s also opening me up without pushing too hard, something I needed in another love interest. It has been nearly three years since my last serious girlfriend…


What’s more is that my Anchor (whom I’ve been with for about 2 years now) gets on well with her, something that didn’t have the chance to blossom with my ex. I feel a wave of relief come over me when I discuss Shiny Girl with him, and I don’t have to remind him who she is. We’ve all met, spent time together, conversed online. I hope that we can do more of it soon.


No one is in a rush to achieve any ultimate goal. We can just go forward at a leisurely gait.


It’s very early and I dare not press on this for fear of jinxing it, but I am very, very happy.






No, it’s not easy. Hardly any of the best things are, but they’re worth fighting for/working on if you think they are. It helps if you’re not the only one in a party feeling that way.