Well, several epiphanies perhaps.
1. There are three distinct types of relationships that can form right now: lovers in the moment, lovers who become friends, and friends who become lovers. Each one evolves at its own very distinct pace. And its really important for me to figure out quickly, if I’m attracted to someone, which one of these dynamics it might be.
2. The poly community is a small world. Actually, Vancouver is a small world. I’ve had a few cringing moments lately as I have been experiencing a new wave of ‘first dates’, realising that the person I’m on a date with knows someone else I once slept with, or seeing someone I was on a date with a few days prior come in to the same coffee shop where I’m having a date. Ah. Awkward. At what point do I say anything, really? There’s a level at which I say- is it even relevant? And another where I ask myself- what choice would have more integrity?
3. Its good to be clear up front about who I am. In my world, there are no inappropriate questions. If I’m going to be intimate with someone then they’ve got to be ok with my swearing, my quirky humor, my sudden spiritual rants, and all my other eccentricities.
4. Its ok to be patient. In fact, its probably better. This might mean I finally take the plunge and invest in some sex toys (yes, gasp, can you believe I don’t own any?).
5. It can be a lot of fun to meet strangers who you know almost nothing about. I’m endeavouring in my own process to trust my instinct more. Its been scarily accurate about a lot of stuff so might as well see what it can do for selecting who I go on dates with. So rather than engage in lengthy back and forth emails on OkCupid, if I get a good vibe from someone, I’ll say ‘lets meet’. Same on facebook with people from the poly groups who I haven’t met yet, but take a liking to from their comments and posts. The whole process of getting to know a total stranger is really pretty awesome, and can be filled with surprises rather than expectations that lead to disappointments. One recent coffee date, I fully expected a creepy old toothless guy (he uses a pseudonym on facebook and has almost no personal photos), and was very pleasantly surprised to find he was nothing of the sort. Its fun to meet strangers with whom you think you might click .If it ends up that I eventually get to know them naked too, well hey, that could be fun.
I spent a good deal of this summer enjoying a far more fluid lifestyle, travelling and transitioning. This was very conducive to a more fluid lovestyle too, with a lot of spontaneity and fun. But I have to shift gears now. As Joseph pointed out to me, its a small and very intimately connected community, and despite all the attention I’ve been getting, I really shouldn’t let that get to my head. I am relatively new on the scene, and its natural that everyone wants to know me I suppose. Well, who can blame them, I like to think I’m pretty damn awesome, and most certainly worth knowing! But right now, it feels like just a bit too much attention. Its distracting too.
I’m seriously considering avoiding all poly-centric events for a while. Or, if I do go, wearing a potato sack or a burqa. Even better- a potato sack and a burqa. Yes! There we go!