Thursday, September 27, 2007


I realize the week has slipped by and I haven't blogged. I've been busy yes. But also, my life is so full of living the mundane right now that I think I'm choosing not to relive it late at night when I could rather be sleeping.

Everything isn't horrible and I actually feel blessed by so much but...

I'm working four days a week at the college rather than three days due to all the play time I've taken off and that makes me cranky--I'm kinda sorta speaking tongue-in-cheek- here, but not really. Actually...oh, how can I get myself out of this one? Well, what I say is true and yet they are so good to me and like I said, I'm blessed.

OK, this is awful--my whole body is bitten up by fleas. My house is infested and I'm mortified. Besides that, the bites hurt, and itch. I've treated the cat and also kept her outside, washed and scrubbed everything over and over and damn it, no one else in the house is getting bit! Jerry almost had me believing we didn't have fleas at all and I was thinking I had some strange skin condition until last night when he found a monster flea on our bed. So this morning I'm washing everything again and putting it all away and then we are leaving for four days and I'm going to let one of those poison flea bombs off in the house. I hate the thought of it and have been resisting it but I just don't know what else to do.

My mother is doing poorly and I'm concerned with all that entails in the short run and the long run. Again, my daughter and daughter in-law have been life savers in helping care for her. A couple of my kids are doing very poorly and I'm sad over this. I've written about my mom and her Alzheimer's before but my kids, shit, I'm not putting that stuff in my blog--not right now--too vulnerable for me and besides, their privacy and all. But damn, it's wearing me out.

But again, I can't help but return to realizing how truly blessed I am. I mean, I'm so loved and supported in my life along with everything else--and believe me, I haven't mentioned the half of it!

Last night I met with all of my Juicy Women and they are such a special bunch and I'm so grateful to have their wise, sexy, womanliness in my life right now. Ana shared more of her sexual history and I swear, that woman never ceases to amaze me. Pema too, she's in the midst of some intense inner work right now and she's soaring. And Randi, Lena, Molly...I just give thanks for their presence in my life.

Also, more good news is that Jerry and I are leaving at 1:00 today for a 3 day Enlightenment Intensive (EI) in Geyserville. It's being held at a strange, very strange, but wonderful place called The Isis Oasis. Jerry is participating and I'm monitoring which I'm really looking forward to. This will be the second EI I've monitored and some of my most favorite EI people will be there. After the EI, on Sunday night, Jerry and I have reservations at Harbin Hot Springs and we will be staying at the domes. The domes are part of the Watsu Center there and although we've been to Harbin many times, we've never stayed at the domes before and I'm very excited.

I'll be back home on Monday and I'll blog about my experiences over the weekend. Oh, did you notice that I'm not working 4 days this week, nor next, because I'm busy playing? And I have the nerve to get cranky? Well I'm not cranky really, tired sometimes. Maybe I need to play less and sleep more? Forget that, it never worked for me, even when I was a full time student. I'd work, play, study, take care of my kids and drink coffee rather than sleep. Truthfully, I do take fairly good care of myself...I think I'm in an odd mood right now.

Have a wonderful weekend everyone. Be happy. Love and be loved. I am.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

A Sweet Story

I'm attributing the reason that I'm feeling so much better to both James healing purple compassion and to my friend, Ren's magical fish tonic. Thanks for sharing the good stuff my friends.

I worked all day at the college and saw clients tonight. We had Thai food for dinner and then Jerry wanted me to go with him to see the band Sambada which is playing only 3 blocks from our house. I was tempted but didn't want to push it. Now I'm kinda sorry I didn't go.

On Sunday I'm attending a full day Vipassana meditation with John Travis who is the founder of Mt. Stream Meditation Center in Northern California. He'll be right here in Chico at the Sky Creek Dharma Center.

So here is a sweet story about the Sky Creek Dharma Center, as it relates to my childhood.

When I was a young girl between the ages of six and ten years, I lived in a very unhappy family with a very abusive step-father. He was the religious type, deacon of our church, lots of bible reading, prayer and that sort of stuff.

My mother had somehow met and befriended this pentecostal family, the Perry's, who lived in a big ranch house north my town. Their family and mine, became close and we were often invited to parties at their home and some of my fondest childhood memories are of these times.

The father, I think his name was Chuck, ran a sawmill at the airport and the mother, Betty, raised their seven boys, the youngest who was adopted. Well, that's the roles they played that were significant to me anyway. They would have these big parties with lots of food and people and a big pool full of kids. Sometimes, when the party was over, some of us kids would get to spend the night. I loved spending time at their home where I felt loved, safe, paid attention to, and where life was not only peaceful (in a chaotic kid filled sort of way) but also full of adventure. I was relaxed and happy in that home. That was 45 years ago.

Awhile back I attended a potluck at the Sky Creek Dharma Center. Standing in the kitchen I was overwhelmed with familiarity, almost a deja vu experience but not quite. All of a sudden I knew where I was and all my memories of the time spend in that kitchen, in that home with the Perry family came flooding back. The house had been remodeled of course and the pool in the huge backyard had since been filled in. But as I walked through each room I remembered so much and I was touched and emotionally filled in a way that surprised me. I felt as if I was home.

Next spring, my friend Patrick and I will co-master an Enlightenment Intensive at the Sky Creek Dharma Center. Life and its circles. Isn't that a sweet story?

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Me Sickie

After working at the college all day yesterday with a stuffed up head, weepy eyes, itching ears and throat along with incessant sneezing, I headed over to my mother's to visit with her for awhile, making sure she had dinner and her took her meds. I then gratefully arrived home to Jerry who was waiting for me with dinner. He had band practice so he was soon gone and I actually picked up around the house a little before I hit the couch for about three hours to relax before falling off to some much needed sleep.

Sleep was not to come though. As soon as I crawled into bed and curled up next to Jerry, I noticed that the pain in my solar plexus had returned. I tried breathing into it, hoping that I would be allowed the sweet respite of falling unconscious but I received no mercy. After repeating the same cycle as two nights ago (which I blogged about here) I was finally able to slip off into sleep at 6:30 a.m. Sweet Jesus.

Jerry kissed me goodbye as he left for work at 7:30 and I called the office letting them know I wouldn't be in today. If I wasn't so darn sick with this cold I probably would have pulled myself up by my tenacious will and headed off to work but with another sleepless night under my belt I just didn't want to I didn't.

I slept to 11:00 and then brushed my teeth and hair, washed my face and headed down to the coffee shop for some nourishment. I brought my computer with me so here I am, so tired that I'm sitting here blogging because I can't imagine undertaking the arduous five block walk back to my bed.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Joab Powell

For some reason my brother has a newfound interest in some of our family history. A distant relative first came through our hometown maybe 27 years ago. He had done all this research on our family tree. What was somewhat interesting (for those interested in this kind of stuff) was that I had moved to Oregon and for awhile (unbeknownst to me, until my mother came to visit), I ended up in the neck of the woods with several of my distant relatives. We ended up meeting two or three of them and even visited a church that my great great grandfather had built and a graveyard where lots of my dead relations were buried. Joab Powell was my great great great grandfather (I think), a circuit rider, and a real character it seems. Here's something my brother just sent me

Singing Circuit Rider Battled Sin To Save Oregon Souls

...a note from history

Joab Powell was one of the first and certainly one of the most effective of the early circuit riders in the Northwest. A big man, standing over six feet tall and heavily built, he preached the word of the Lord with gusto throughout the Willamette and Umpqua Valleys of Oregon.

In 1853, Joab Powell, along with J.G. Berkley and R. Cheadle, organized the Providence Church on the Powell Donation Land Claim near Scio in the Willamette Valley. Acting on the belief that “Providence has surely led us here,” Uncle Joab rode far afield to carry the “word” to the scattered settlers.

As he rode the circuit, Joab Powell’s voice announced his coming before ever he came in sight himself. Booming an out-of-tune rendition of “The Judgment Day, the Judgment Day is rolling on,” he sang his way across the Willamette Valley.

Through the 1850s and 1860s, Powell rode thousands of pioneer miles to carry his message to anyone who would listen, saved or sinner. Over 3,000 are said to have repented and came at his invitation to be saved during the 21 years of his ministry in Oregon. His church near Scio had as many as 400 members at one time during this period; some Sundays he would baptize up to 30 persons, immersing them in nearby chilly Crabtree Creek.

Powell’s delivery of his message was attention-getting and awe-inspiring. He would set himself squarely down before the gathering, prop his muddy boots upon a bench, close his eyes, run his fingers through his hair and begin to sing. If the congregation joined in that was fine; if they didn’t, that was all right, too. When he finished the hymn, and maybe another one or two if he felt like it, he would raise himself to his full height of 6 feet, smooth down his coat, and greet the pioneers with a smile.

Then, with everyone’s attention, he would begin to reel off chapter after chapter from the Bible, stopping occasional to intersperse the scripture with admonitions of fire and brimstone in good old frontier language. If he really wanted to make a point, he would pause, slowly unbutton his coat, remove it, and proceed with his message in his shirt sleeves. What he lacked in formal education, he made up for with vigor and persuasion.

Powell came originally to Oregon in 1852 with his wife and 14 children. His wife read the Bible to him often and he memorized scripture from her reading, for he could actually read very little himself. In the frontier towns of the Northwest, his battle against sin was every bit as energetic as the battle of other pioneers against the Indians or harsh weather conditions.

He used whatever tactic he felt would work best in a community to get his message across. For instance in one village, his first convert was the local saloon keeper. After that, whenever he came through, services were held in the saloon, with the “saved” proprietor locking the door while the hat was passed for Uncle Joab, and directing his customers to fill it up!

The pioneer cemetery of Providence Church is the final resting place of Joab Powell. The Baptist Church erected a memorial to him there in 1924. However, it is unlikely that Uncle Joab’s spirit is content to rest quietly; he is undoubtedly still galloping along the country roads of Oregon, singing as he rides.

from the Old Stuff archives.

Are these people freaky looking or what? This is Joab and his wife.He was known as "The Fighting Quaker."

Monday, September 17, 2007

You Fucked Up Girlfriend

What is my solar plexus saying to me? "Damn girlfriend, you fucked up sweetie."

Some sources cite the solar plexus chakra as the seat of intuition, the place where one experiences a sense of knowing and our intent of being. If we listen to the solar plexus it will help us make better decisions in our lives. The solar plexus is where the mind and body link up--the heartmind. Problems arise when we ignore our 'gut reactions', our intuitions. When we don't listen to our own inner voice.

I found this affirmation to help with disharmony in the solar plexus.

I trust my inner voice. I am strong, wise and powerful.

Am I dealing with blocked and stored feelings of shame and/or being unloved? Maybe I have unresolved trauma? Or too many unmet emotional needs? What would those unmet needs be? Am I that out of touch with my true intent of being right now? Is some of what I'm experiencing right now the unresolved pain of my childhood? Or is the childhood pain I've blocked an accumulation of my parental guilt and shame from acknowledging (but inability to cope with) my contribution to the unmet needs of my own children, now adults?

The solar plexus is also referred to as a 'trauma bank.' One way to release the trauma stored there and experience more personal power is through breath work. There is a connection between full on breathing and full of feeling. Shallow, half hearted breathing reduces sensation, and reduces our personal power. Children whose parents have not allowed them, nor modeled good skills for experiencing the full range of emotions, including the most painful ones, start suppressing their natural ability to breathe deep and free which encourages the processing of traumatic emotions as they are experienced. These unprocessed emotions get stored all over the body, especially in the solar plexus.

This becomes a circular feedback loop--blocked emotions stored in the solar plexus inhibit the diaphragm and our ability to breath deeply and freely. Then, the inhibited diaphragm encourages the habit of not breathing deeply, leaving us unable to fully experience and process our emotions. These partially experienced and processed emotions are stored in the solar plexus creating further blockage and the cycle continues.


Why another post on the solar plexus? Last night I had another attack. I was up most of the night, in and out of the shower allowing the hot water to beat on my power spot, providing just enough relief to temporarily cope. Then I'd crawl back in bed and be able to relax just enough to almost fall asleep but the pain would again increase to the point where I would be back up stretching on my yoga ball or asking Jerry to crack my back so I could breathe a little freer. Then I'd try to do some conscious breathing until I'd be back in the shower again...Most of the night. I did get a few hours of sleep before I was up at 7:00 to get ready to go to work.

The pain was gone today but the area is incredibly tender. Also I have an outrageous head cold, sneezing all day with itchy ears and throat.

Yea, yea, I've been a little stressed I guess. I thought I was handling it all OK but obviously not.

Friday, September 14, 2007

My Only One

Gawd. I've been talking with various friends in their 40's, 50's and 60's lately and I swear, we are still a lot like teenagers when it comes to being in relationship. You know, silly and inexperienced. Everyone is still horny and seeking sex and love and trying to balance their needs for both freedom and security and creative self expression. You'd think we'd be better at relationship after practicing at it for three decades.The issues I've currently been discussing with my friends are:
jealousy as manipulation;
sexual possession, or the perceived right to the sexual exclusivity of a partner;
the socially constructed dream of finding our "one and only"

I relate to these issues based on my own life experience.

Looking at jealousy as manipulation I've experienced this from both sides (manipulating a partner due to my own jealousy and being manipulated by a partner due to their jealousy) and it's very tied up with sexual possession for me.

When my husband (dh) and I opened our marriage to responsible non-monogamy/polyamory I found myself burdened with an array of ideas that came from the socially constructed belief systems that I had been raised with. I had accepted these beliefs without any real awareness and I found that they were severely influencing the way I behaved in relationship. I was intending to live my life based in a new paradigm but was functioning from the same old one.

Non-monogamy was something we we familiar with but the polyamory started in my mind and expanded into our conversations and first into my heart, then dh's. We had a long time dear female friend who became a lover. The sex was hot and fun and we all loved each other. We always engaged in sex as a threesome so if I was gone off to work, it was expected that there would be no sexual play going on between the two of them while I was gone. When we were together, I called the shots. If I wanted sex, then it happened (of course, only if they wanted it to, but they always did.) The three of us might be blissfully engaged in sex but when I was done, we were all done. Me calling the shots seemed normal and natural to me. At the time I didn't see my behavior as selfish and controlling. Dh went along with it and our friend was pretty quiet about her frustrations. She would voice little peeps here and there but mostly she just accepted however I, or dh, orchestrated things. Maybe she complained more than I was aware of and I just didn't hear her, or maybe I made light of what I was hearing. Mostly she dealt with what she didn't like with a joke and a laugh that made light of it. I don't know. I've reflected on why this behavior seemed OK to me and it goes back to the ideas I held about relationship. He was my husband and therefore I had the exclusive rights to his sexuality. We were a couple and this was about making things work for us (me) first and foremost. I loved her and considered her well being too, and I depended on her not doing anything that wasn't right for her. But bottom line for us as a couple was that we (I) decided what worked best for us (me) and this was paramount.

When considering possession and the right of sexual exclusively, what this meant was that when we stepped outside of the monogamous box, whenever one or the other of us said stop, we stopped. There is an old poly rule of only moving as fast as the slowest person and we tried to abide by this rule. Today, I still think there is merit to this rule, but it is used and abused with indiscretion. Ultimately I find it's place in part of the old monogamous paradigm that we pay too much tribute to. I subscribed to the idea that my husband was there to please me first and foremost and that that was just the way it SHOULD be. I didn't feel unloving in this attitude, I just didn't question the validity of my position...for awhile. And of course I still do subscribe to the gentle caring and nurturing of our lover's heart, but that is different than partners demanding and expecting to always have their wishes agreed to in the form of what their partner will and will not do.

There were of course other elements at play here--such as my kink tendency to top and be the queen and have to others at my beck and call. It's an appropriate way to play of course when all agree and truthfully I think this is a lot of what was going on with us, without it being directly addressed.

I like that position but I'm also working on letting go of ego and control so sometimes I'm moving in two different directions at the same time. As a side note, I like to top from the bottom. Nothing fits neatly into a strictly labeled box in my world.

In the beginning we had a rule that the two of them didn't play without me. Later, when I had begun the process of evaluating my possessive stance on my husband's sexuality I loosened up and gave him permission to be sexual with her without me, within the boundaries of no oral sex or penetration. Part of this agreement included us talking openly and clearly about every detail of their togetherness in my absence. Besides being motivated by my own personal self-growth I was also setting up my position in our relationship for the future when I might have a partner with whom I wanted to experience some alone time with, separate from my husband.

I never told her about our new agreement and boundaries, mostly because even though I had given my permission due to the reasons stated above, I was still very frightened about it actually happening. Also, dh told me that he had no desire to be with her sexually without me present and this comforted me. I believe he being partially, sincerely true. The other part of the truth was that they played sexually together, alone, for some time without telling me. They kept to the rules of dh's and my agreement (no oral sex and no penetration). During this time, dh and I would have these heart to heart talks and I would encourage him to be sexual with her without me, he would decline and adamantly deny that he had any interest in going there.

Kinda weird huh? There are so many reasons that it came down this way for us and FEAR was attached to every one of those reasons. One big thing that was going on was that we were so in love with each other, finally finding each other at the ages of 39 and 43 after years of struggling and suffering in relationships. We were the perfect couple in so many ways. We had each found our one and only, our soul mate and we were risking A LOT, venturing into this world of responsible non-monogamy/polyamory. dh was in a position he didn't know how to handle very well. He found the reality of loving and desiring another woman who wasn't me, untenable. Also, the fact that he was falling in love with her was something he couldn't even look at, let alone accept. He accepted that he loved her of course but he was in love with me. We had been living the socially constructed dream of finding our one and only, the dream that most of us have been spoon fed our entire lives and the dream that many people never attain. And here we were, jeopardizing this dream. So he choose to go into denial about it, acted unconsciously and refused to admit to himself, to me, or to her, what was going on for him. This is deep stuff with painful triggers that alarm the ego that death is imminent.

I remember once when we were talking on the phone and she called him her lover. Those words coming out of her mouth felt so threatening to me and my ego blew up in full force. Lover was just a way too intimate word to describe their relationship. That word held a relational position in his life that I was simply not willing to share. I said nothing to her but confronted him. Would you call her your lover? "Hum," he says, knowing just how to appease me. " I wouldn't call her my lover." What would you call her then? "Well, I don't know...friend who I fuck, fuck buddy, sex partner..." He came up with various labels that worked for me. That man was my haven, my safe space. He always knew how to comfort me and offer me the security I was looking for, even if it meant lying to me.

Truthfully, he wasn't so much lying to me as he was lying to himself. He didn't know the truth for himself because he was too afraid to look at it. He didn't know how to look at it. Besides, his ego told him that he was going to be blown to smithereens. My ego was afraid too, and with rightful cause. The truth is fucking powerful and it will annihilate whatever is not real. I was afraid too but I kept preparing for the truth to have it's way with us.

I've come to understand that one of the most valuable commodities that dh and I offered one another in the beginning of our relationship was safety and security. We found each other and saved each other and were now recuperating in each others arms and having a lot of fun and adventure in the process. We were were a strong pair-bond from the beginning--good medicine for the other.

When she couldn't bare to carry the deception any longer, lovergirl let the cat out of the bag in regards to her and dh's secret time alone in sexual play. I was once again talking to her about dh's admonitions that he had no desire to be with her sexually without me present. She of course, knew this to be untrue and finally refused to keep her mouth shut. It wasn't like they had a overt agreement to deceive me, they had never even discussed it. Talk about a no talk rule--these two were the king and queen of that game.

Another part of what was going on was that dh was afraid of me being with someone separate from him. If he wasn't doing it, he would be in a better position to deny me the right to do it. He was always willing to share me (as his possession) if he was a part of the loving sexual fun, but he was so not ready to look at and start working on his jealousy and abandonment issues. Most of this was not conscious manipulation, but manipulation it was. As open and truthful and loving as we were all attempting to be, we were playing a game that was very shrouded from our true awareness.

We worked through much of the emotional snafu and things continued as usual. Well, let me take that back. Soon thereafter, for reasons that serve as a digression as to the purpose of this post, we took a temporary hiatus from the sexual part of our triad while our loving friendship continued. I actually forget all the convoluted details as well as the exact time-line but eventually we started sharing sexually again and this time I was really striving to maintain conscious awareness and stretch myself in truth even more. I was willing, and wanted her to be his "lover". I was willing and wanted the two of them to have time alone to play together sexually with the no oral sex and no penetration rule lifted. I was definitely pushing my boundaries and it felt good. Scary, but good. I was feeling my fear and releasing it.

During all of this time I had no other lover that I was interested in. Even though the three of us were a sexual triad, she and I weren't physical lovers, we played with him, together. I knew I wanted another male lover but I rarely found myself attracted to other men except for friendship. Occasionally I would be sexually attracted to someone but for most men, the prospect of being in relationship to a married woman isn't all that attractive. Most of the people I come into contact with are monogamously minded, especially when it comes to establishing a relationship with someone, and I wasn't out looking for sex. Most single men (and women) are looking to meet and fall in love with their one and only. I had a couple of playmates, men who were dh's friends who I loved as friends and who were willing to play a little with the both of us but that's all that ever came my way. Well yes, there have been a few men here and there that were interested in me but it was never mutual until...well, I'll leave that for now.

So our triadic sexual union started back up and even though the door was open for their playing alone together, it didn't happen for awhile. They weren't desperately seeking to experience time alone and the opportunity didn't organically unfold for awhile. We all enjoyed the three of us together and when the time presented itself, they would go for it.

Once, after an intimate and heart opening talk between the three of us, I left to do something. When I came back she disclosed to me that dh had asked her to be his girlfriend. This was one of those sweet moments of him opening and claiming her has is lover/girlfriend, with her permission of course, making a declaration and voicing the truth of their connection and relationship. I was pissed. Ego flare. I thought he should have discussed it with me first. I confronted him/them and we all had to process it for awhile. This was my perceived right of possession in play. If I wasn't his only, I was certainly his number one and I thought he should run any and everything that had to do with his heart, pass me first.

Another time she and I were talking on the phone and she mentioned her desire to have a private conversation with him. This pushed more of my buttons. I didn't understand, or like, her need talk with him alone--why would that be necessary? Talk with him privacy about what I asked. I was very enmeshed in not only the need to know everything but the need to be a part of everything as it happened. To be in control. Of course this really doesn't make sense considering I was encouraging them to be alone together sexually, but it wasn't about logic. This was about me learning release the illusion that I possessed not only my husband's sexuality, but also his heart and his right to have relationships independent of me. Sheesh. This was hard. It's embarrassing to remember just how possessive I once was. But I try to have compassion now for my mindset then. I've done a lot of work on myself. I had a lot of moving the muck of social conditioning to trudge through. dh was always humble (well usually), always apologetic and always willing to see things my way. I liked pushing myself but I didn't like being pushed.

I am a pretty insightful person and tend to operate a bit ahead of the curve (in some areas anyway) in my social circle. I've been known to drag us all out on a limb hovering above the unknown and then egg everyone on to jump. I'm usually willing to jump in first too. In taking on this leadership role it often makes sense to follow my lead, listen to me and heed to my opinions, my interpretation of the rules, and how things are, or should be. Problem is, I'm often just barely a half-step ahead of my fellow adventurers and I'm often fairly fucking clueless myself. Kinda like the blind leading the blind. But if I'm the one instigating the moving and shaking...

To be continued...But isn't there just something in this song that resonates with all of us? You are my only one. That spoon fed dream is deeply embedded I'd say.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Check This Out

Check out Mistress Matisse's poly article, The Veto in Seattle's Stranger, Control Tower and Kink Calendar.

Then you can check out a little poly rant she posted today on her blog. The comments are good too.

Living the Dream

One of my best friends has been talking about her polyamorous nature and yet how it's really just a concept for her. She is living monogamously and yet is open to having another, or other lovers. She's been mulling over the logistics of how living polyamorously could comfortably work.
I like Mistress Matisse's set up. I may have this figured wrong but my understanding is that she has her primary partner, Max, with whom she shares a home. She also has another home where she does her business. Her secondary partner, Monk, is in a long term happy marriage. Matisse mostly lives and sleeps with Max but once or twice a week she and Monk spend the night together at her home where she does her business. When she spends the night with Monk, Max's secondary partner Puck, spends the night with him at the home he shares with Matisse. This routine seems to be very flexible with a bit more, or less, time spent with their primary and/or secondary partners depending on the ebb and flow of their lives and work/play situations. These folks often attend the same social functions and party together but just as often, they are off doing their own thing with their primary or secondary, spending some alone time together or hanging with a different set of friends. It seems that some or all of them have one or two or more tertiary partner's that enter their lives here and there that are inserted into their work/play schedules in an accommodating way. I assume that these folks are far from perfect, because after all, they are human. But damn they do seem to have it all so well organized logistically with everyone seemingly at least functionally happy enough, emotionally mature and loving with one another most of the time.

The day before yesterday, another of my best friends told me that I wasn't polyamorous because even though Jerry and I are willing, we don't actually live polyamorously. It's just a concept for us. This is true I suppose but it felt like a sock in the gut and hurt my feelings. I got over it quickly but I would have preferred hearing words of support and validation. Something along the lines of "You guys have worked so hard and come so far and you can obviously handle this. It's going to be so exciting when you finally get to live your dream." Oh well. But Jerry has never really been put to the test. Me neither. We certainly aren't living a poly life like Matisse is. And I'll admit that I'm a bit jealous of her in that aspect too. I've perhaps experienced more on my end that Jerry has on his, but maybe not. Ultimately, neither of us has lived with the other being full on in love with another person with whom everyone has claimed and acknowledged that love and then carried on creating relationship in a responsible, committed, and sexual loving way. It is my desire to experience that some day.

My situation sort of reminds me of when I was mismatched in an unhealthy, emotionally abusive relationship for eight long years. We were so messed up and unable to cope with our situation and love for one another. Yet I knew, without a doubt that I was ready and capable of being in relationship in a powerful, truthful and loving way. When I finally had the courage to let go of that relationship I immediately stepped into my relationship with Jerry and started creating what I knew I could and would. It was all in the timing and I was just waiting for us to meet and start on our journey together.

My dear friend Gillette recently wrote about Jerry's and my relationship in her blog, Healthy Relationships On The Edge. "...there is one relationship...that is the healthiest relationship I have ever seen. They are poly. It hasn't always been easy. In fact, at times it's been pretty darn difficult to the point of me worrying where it would end up. But they both held onto themselves and through their love, shifted and sorted, using their relationship to open themselves up in ways neither thought possible. Through this adventure, their commitment to themselves and each other, they are, literally, not the same people they were two years ago. The changes have manifested in all ways-not just their marriage. They are calmer, more at peace, happier than I have ever seen them...and I've known the wife for about 25 years. They are closer, more intimate than any couple I've ever met. Their calm, sweet, yet spicily-hot energetic connection is palpable. It binds them more strongly now than it did when they married 12(?) years ago. At the same time, this connection, because it's grounded in Truth and trust, gives them both so much freedom!!!" I felt really honored and a bit unworthy when I read this but you know, it rings true for me.

I know that I don't always get what I want but that I get what I need. If I need a full on polyamorous relationship then it will come and I'll be ready. I identify as being polyamorous and I hope it's a more solid claim than my bi-sexuality. I was in love with a woman once. I would have had sex with her...if only... Sometimes I feel like I'm just potentially bi-sexual and potentially polyamorous and that it's possible for me to stay stuck in potentiality without ever manifesting what I want. This train of thought is a bit depressing but I have a good life (when I'm not having a really hard day I know this) and a great relationship, regardless. And I'm willing to continue meeting my life as it presents itself.

I know I can, and currently do, love more than one person simultaneously and so does Jerry. I wonder where the tipping point, or threshold is? At what point do I get to legitimately claim that I'm polyamorous? This is an earnest question and yet I'm also being fairly tongue-in-cheek here. I'm aware that I've physically stepped into my dream and yet I'm definitely not full on living the dream. I see of this picture in my minds eyes of Jerry and me and our lovers sitting in the car with the key in the ignition and the car is even running but the transmission is still in park. I know that when the petal is to the metal it will definitely be more of a challenge but I've no doubt that we are both more than capable and I'll be happy to confirm this someday.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Quite The Day

Wow. Yesterday was quite the day. Up at 7:00 and at work at the college by 8:00. It was a fairly busy day with students although the first of year rush as slowed down a lot. I finished work and then met with a friend at 4:30 for a beer to discuss various topics such as the freedom and creativity that Burningman inspires, polyamory, and jealousy as manipulation. My women's financial group met at 5:30 and we mostly discussed the pros and cons of disbanding. I hope we stay together but I didn't feel as if I had a very strong voice to offer as I haven't been putting much (if any) work into the group myself. I was secretary for the first year and took my job seriously but after than I resigned and just haven't had much to offer since then except appreciation and to research a few stocks here and there and show up for most of the monthly meetings with my investment money. We've been going for almost six years now.

From 6:45 to 9:30 my Juicy Women's group met. The women were pretty darn juicy too. Randi told us about the Summer of Love Fest and her 25 year bi-sexual loving relationship with her good friend. Pema reported how things continue to improve in her relationship with her lover and also of her polyamorous nature and her questions about the complications of living a polyamorous life. Molly is very focused and diligently editing her book. Lena is working on her house and getting some sexual loving from an old friend. She told a sweet story of the altar she has created of various lovers she has had over the years. Ana entertained us with various Burningman stories about public sex, validation, openhearted connections and her own sexual encounters which have followed her back into the default world. I shared a little about some of my Burningman highlights including my tea ceremony and the beautiful Ranger I encountered on the dusty road for a delightful and spontaneous mini make out session. Our check ins lasted so long that Ana only had the chance to share one brief but powerful sexual encounter as part of her sexual history.

Here are some more Burningman pics for you to enjoy.

I couldn't have asked for a better camp or more lovely campmates.

This is the tea room, behind the bikes. There was a yoga ball in there to stretch on and it made a nice space for napping in the afternoon.

A wonderful woman was looking for a camp with energy like ours to gift with this poster. She ended up staying for tea ceremony and also gifted us with some poetic spoken word.
Our address--We were at the corner of F and Eight.

Another view of Peace Camp
I can't remember where this was located but I liked it so snapped a pic.

My Heart Is On Fire

Pamm, at My Secret Spiritual Dance has written a nice article in her Thursday tantra series on Soul Gazing.

I get all warm with tingles in my solar plexus when I think of soul gazing. It produces a body memory and opens my heart right up. I love it. Awhile back was involved in a love affair that that had it's most profound moments based on soul gazing. Gazing can take you very deep, very fast and it's a powerful practice.

There is a great book by Will Johnson called Rumi--Gazing Into The Eyes Of The Beloved--The Radical Practice of Beholding the Divine.

Having just returned from Burningman I'm finding myself yearning to engage in more heart centered connecting with others. Soul gazing, shared tea ceremony, and dyad communication are the practices that are most calling me at this time. I'll be monitoring for the annual Enlightenment Intensive at Isis Oasis at the end of this month and that will fill me.

At this moment I'm feeling exceedingly grateful for all of the open hearted family and friends I have in my life. My heart is on fire.

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Yvonne's Landing

Foolsgold--Chapter 32, foolsgold and ethel's landing

"If the fool persists in his folly he will become wise."--William Blake
The Tarot Fool--Artwork by Red Dog Scott.

"The Fool is an innocent, bound on a journey he knows not where, with only the conviction that with optimism the greater good will prevail. The Fool has faith in himself to bring him through new experiences, as we must have faith in ourselves, knowing our hearts lead the way and where good intentions prevail, the correct path will become apparent.

The Fool has little baggage, little preparation and his only muses are the little butterfly people who follow him, representing transformation and change, as well as his instincts for survival that will help him make his way through the weary world. He is a free spirit, an unformed personality ready to take on anything, climbing towards spiritual enlightenment.

The Fool is on a journey, an adventure. He represents new and possibly unexpected changes in one's life to a new and uncharted territory. This territory may not be a physical change in location; it can be a new creative path, a new field of study or a new business opportunity. This change may be an adventure of some type that has a beginning and end, or it may be the kind of change that affects an entire lifestyle, but as in all changes it involves risk.

The Fool can also represent foolish idealism, impulsive behavior, or extravagant and foolish choices."

I'm definitely entering into unknown, uncharted territory with my mother. It's an adventure I feel I must enter into as The Fool. Ethel's landing is the space in Susan's house, halfway up the stairs which Ethel, Susan's mom loves. It's a place for her to "pause between two worlds where she can be in a kind of limbo." I want to create yvonne's landing for my mom, a place for her to pause. I don't know if this is possible. While searching for care homes for her I know I'm willing to place her in one if necessary but I don't want this for her. I want our family to be able to care for her in a transitory pause between this life and another. I hope we can pull it off but maybe not. Her body seems to be abandoning her, or maybe it's she who is abandoning it. I go back and forth with ideas as to what is right for her at this time. What is the most loving way to care for her?

And I'm once again inspired to take on another name in honor of my mother--Yvonnechild. I don't know how or when or why I would actually use this name but I like it.

Susan takes her mom on an outing to the creek and she finds Fool's Gold. Susan is proud of her for making magic happen for them and realizes how she underestimates her mother. I also underestimate mine. Susan seems to fill herself to the brim with her mother and I wonder if I will really take the time to experience her as she makes her journey out of this world. Will I take advantage of this opportunity, this precious time, or will I allow clock's breath to distract me?
Earth cannot escape heaven, flee it by going up or flee it by going down; heaven still invades earth, energizes it, makes it sacred.--Meister Eckhart

Thursday, September 6, 2007

The GreenMan--so nice, we burned him twice!

Isn't Yoda a quintessential Green Man? He was our guide all the way to the playa and then home again--oh, well the playa was home. And what a welcome it was!

I'm back and I hope to eventually return to some insightful musings with some substance. For now I'm still tired and dealing with playa skin which is red and inflamed from the wind, sun and dust. My lips are still chapped too. Was it worth it? You betch ya. But the default world has hit me pretty hard since my return.

My mommy isn't doing so well and I'm seriously investigating care homes. I've found one I like but they have a waiting list. My daughter and her girlfriend have basically moved in with her, bless their hearts. I have a home health care agency visit scheduled for next week.

I have some stories and pics to share. Jerry and I shared space in Peace Camp with eight other lovely folks. What awesome campmates. We connected with many incredible people with open heartminds, folks who are doing some intriguing things out and about in the default world.

For now, here are a few pics for your enjoyment.

This is the camp where people had the opportunity to share their secrets in a variety of forms. The secret board was popular. I was told that I should be stapled to the board as a secret. Although I found the comment sweet and endearing I don't want to be anyone's secret. Before last year's burn I had a friend tell me, "What happens in the desert, stays in the desert." I didn't like the sound of that when I heard it. I want to bring Burningman home with me. I don't want to deny my true self for fear of rejection. I want to let the world read my secrets. Thus this blog. I intend to claim my true self, more and more each day. If you are my friend, my hope is that you will be willing claim me publicly also. But as the secret below states, we all have our weaknesses, and those tender underbellies need to be treated gently also.