No Choruses to Hide Behind

The post-flood apartment renovations continue, and I remain transient. I’ve got my sweet little Airbnb until the end of this month, and then it’s a whole lot of ‘we’ll see’ until I can move back home again. It shouldn’t take much longer. My best guess is mid-April. The beautiful thing is seeing how grounded I feel. How at home I am in myself. It’s a good thing too, because there’s an anniversary approaching.

Last year at this time we were set to embark on a family vacation. On March 19th 2018, on said vacation, I witnessed something that made it clear that my life was about to change. That nothing would be the same. That I would have to re-define family, and re-discover who I am. I wanted one last hoorah with my parents, my brother and my partners and kids while everyone was able-bodied and able to enjoy such a thing. Instead, it was the catalyst that sent me into another orbit. The start of an excruciating journey that continues to unfold.

The light is hitting the path these days, dappling the fresh-smelling muck with cheerful patterns. I’m learning to trust my gut, which means making huge decisions. In May, I’m beginning a five-and-a-half year journey. I’m going back to school full time (online) to become a psychotherapist. I’ve fantasized about reinventing my life and going to university. So many times, I’ve wondered how different my career path would have been if I’d used even half of this giant brain of mine.

Friends, I feel called to be a therapist. When I imagine my future practice, it’s devoted to relationships and sex. This has been a dream of mine for ages, and only as a single mom could I lean on government funding to make it come true. Some real-life lemonade that I’m squeezing with these relentless hands. I’m both excited and terrified, and all the best things feel that way at first.

The flood/homelessness has freed up enough funds to finish publishing that novel I’ve been working on for years. I hope to have it finally out in the world by the fall. I’ve found a cover designer, and will begin the design process next month. I also plan to start recording an audio book version of the final draft.

My romantic dance card is empty at the moment.

Polyamory, at least in the sense of maintaining multiple relationships, feels like too much for me to manage. I want a big love. I don’t want a square dance, I want a single partner. If I’m going to test the boundaries of monogamy, I want someone by my side to explore that with. I continue to trust my gut as I encounter new people.

There was a world-traveler with eyes like a husky who taught my body new tricks, and seemed enamored of me, but had a lot on his (emotional/life) plate. The timing was way off, and my gut was never really clear.

There was a rogue of an artist who made music and told stories and helped me make some magic in the bedroom. He inspired some of my best poems, and I gifted him a hand-written collection for his birthday. He didn’t have any real space for me amidst some complicated personal relationships and a whole bunch of other stuff rattling around in the atelier of his mind.

I know exactly what I’m looking for in a ‘someone’, and I’m able now to step away from anyone who isn’t that. I am excellent and gracious when it comes to ending things. I was never really very good at this before. There was a lot of ignoring my gut and benefit of the doubt and sticking around when I really shouldn’t have. I wasn’t afraid to be alone. I was afraid to be unloved.

It might be time to take a break from dating and sex. To take a more passive stance in the pursuit of romance. I could do well to rest my heart for a little while, and I’ve got plenty of people who love me. I love me more than ever before, and that often feels like all I need.

In the background of these real-life dating trials, I’ve built a connection with someone that I will only describe as magic. He’s a creator, a storyteller. Our entire bond exists in text messages and the occasional phone call. Is that crazy?

I feel like he speaks my language, despite never sharing a conversation in the same physical space. Like he sees the world in the same kind of dazzling light and velvety shadow as I do. I hear this in his voice, in his words, in the notes he strikes. We are mutual fans of one another’s work. That’s a beautiful feeling. I was humbled the first time he told me he’d been following my writing. Following, like I’m leading him somewhere.

There are some enormous barriers to being able to explore what this connection could be. Several hours of driving. Same country, same time zone, but children for each of us who are anchors to the places where we live.

Does that matter when you aren’t looking to make babies and raise them with someone? When you each have full and busy lives? If this connection is real, what’s a few years of long distance until one of the kiddos is adulting? (I’m shaking my own head, don’t worry.)

But…but…You know I’m a hopeless romantic. In my work as a wedding officiant, I hear stories about the circumstances that lead people to one another; losing religion, disobeying family, challenging culture, waiting for the laws to change, reassigning their gender, living continents apart for years, meeting in their twenties and reuniting in their forties and finally finding space for one another. I married a couple in December who each had to travel to Hong Kong from their own corners of the world to meet each other. When they did, ‘they just knew’.

Shouldn’t we at least see what it feels like to be in the same room, with nothing to distract from the conversations we could have? If it’s as good in real life, what happens next?

We met on my writing retreat in 2017, by a complete fluke. I got to see him for the first time in his element, which is a beautiful way to encounter anyone for the first time. I guess the same could be said for him, because he first discovered me by reading these posts. We started chatting a year later and here we are now, but where are we? We’re scheduled to meet in eleven days, but who’s counting.

I don’t believe in coincidence. Master Oogway was not shitting when he said ‘There are no accidents’. I think people come to us like offerings from the universe to teach us, or gift us, or help us grow.

Maybe this connection is meant to show me that men like this exist, and maybe it’s just a matter of finding those qualities closer to home. Maybe one of us will chicken out and the meeting won’t happen. Maybe my dance card cleared out just in the nick of time. Maybe I’m the only one who is feeling like this is a special connection. Maybe the distance should be a hard no, and this should just be a good friendship. Maybe I’m thinking about it too much. Maybe, maybe, maybe.

Meanwhile, I’m keeping busy with work. I have wonderful friends who fill me with love. My children are thriving, and I look forward to a season of mucky hiking, discovering the wonder of nature unfolding. The solstice is coming along with the promise of spring’s renewal and regeneration. My family is close and connected. I have an abundance of riches, and an active imagination. I have love. So much love, and it feels like a chorus rallying behind me almost all of the time.