Thursday, November 12, 2009

What cosmic forces are at play?

Was it just Tuesday that I opened my email to find a message from someone I thought I would never hear from again? I have experienced so much emotion in so little time, and so of course I come here to process it.

I am fortunate to have known love in its many forms, and to have the capacity to blur the artificial lines our society has drawn in blood, sectioning off our hearts and the people who dwell in it.  I have known what it is to be a mother to my siblings. I have known what it is to be a sibling to a lover, the child of a lover, the mother of a lover. I've had lovers become friends and friends become lovers, and it is the friends and lovers arena that has always been most problematic.

Once upon a time, a decade ago, I took a long-time friend as a lover, and my primary partner of 7 years consented but was ambivalent. Those of us who are Polyamorous understand the NRE (new relationship energy) conundrum. We all love feeling it, but our partners who aren't caught up in one of their own feel excluded. Usually within 6 to 9 months the NRE fades -- but some poly couples do not survive this period.  Such was the case with me and the man I've always thought of as "My Beloved".

If ever I had a soul-mate, it was him, and the ending of our relationship was complicated and ultimately, well, tragic in some ways. During the course of our relationship my partner had been involved with women I liked and while I sometimes felt threatened by his attraction to these other women, I had only to examine the depths of our connection with each other to feel secure. Unfortunately, the intensity of my connection with the woman-friend I was involved with was rather daunting to him: he withdrew and she filled that empty space to a point that eventually, when I was asked after four months to choose between them, I chose her.  In choosing her, I hurt him deeply -- very, very deeply -- and myself as well, such that the after-effects rocked me for years. This is an extreme over-simplification, of course -- there is a lot of nuance missing in what I am writing, but that is the bare-bones.

I tried to stay in contact with My Beloved, but eventually he severed all ties, and despite a half-dozen attempts on my part over the years to touch-base with him, he never responded, and so I accepted that he would never again be a part of my life. I can only liken it to an amputee finally accepting the loss of a limb and going forward with her life. My woman-friend and I soon fell out of infatuation and did our best to continue being friends, with limited success. I healed from my first attempt at polyamory, did my best to take positive lessons away from it, and went on to form meaningful relationships. I even fell in love ;)

And then Tuesday, out of the blue, My Beloved contacted me. I couldn't help myself -- after the events of the past couple of years one of my first thoughts was that something must be horribly wrong -- was he dying? Why else would he contact me? A transformative journey is the reason he's given, and I am ok with that. Every day is a transformative journey for me, so I understand that reasoning. Each day, while connected to those which came before and will come after, is entire of itself, and radical change can take place in a matter of heartbeats.

To say that I feel joy in hearing from him again is an understatement. I've wished him happiness every day since we parted ways. I've missed him, and thirsted for news of him, but respected his demonstrated wishes to eliminate me from his life: Though we worked for the same company for several years, I never once inquired about him, and when I had to visit his office, I took pains to make sure he never ran into me. I've not seen him in person since 2002, I think.

In the space of a week I've been in contact with three men with whom my relationships were formed prior to 1995. I find myself wondering what cosmic forces are at play here. Fortunately, my current partner appears to be ok with what is going on. We have excellent communication and he is willing to give me the space I need to work out my feelings on this. Past experience has taught me that keeping my partner fully informed makes a world of difference :)

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