Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Poly Girl Tilda

Thanks to Tom Paine over at Polyamourously Perverse for sharing this link. It's to an article in the Daily Mail on Tilda Swinton, the British star who just won the Oscar for best supporting actress for her performance in the film, Michael Clayton (George Clooney). Good film by the way, Jerry and I watched it right before the Oscars.
It seems that Tilda is living a happy and successful polyamorous lifestyle with her stay at home husband, 10 year old twins, and traveling companion boyfriend.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Communication As Communion

Today I was contemplating Enlightenment Intensives and the dyad work they consist of. This technique of contemplation and communication is a powerful tool for clearing oneself of all the mind stuff we generate on a daily basis.

I emailed Jerry and thanked him for his willingness to be real, for sharing his truth, for engaging in deep spiritual work with me. We've been committed partners in life and love and dyad communication work has been our path long before we ever knew about Enlightenment Intensives. When we met we both had a fairly clear idea of how to not do relationship. We set our sights on loving each other first and foremost through honest communication. Well, that and good sex. We didn't know how to do it so well when we first started and we've made many blunders but our intentions were always strong. We've been learning and practicing lots about communication and what it really takes to be authentic and to tell the truth. We fell in love and then started learning how to love. Wow, what a journey it's been.

Both of us work at clearing our minds on pretty much a daily basis. Some of this we do alone of course--individual practices that we've each found valuable. We also do the work of sharing together, receiving and understanding the nitty gritty details of the other's heart, mind and emotions. It's amazing how sharing mind stuff stuff allows me to release it, transform it and sometimes I gain incredible insight about myself too.

I have lots of thoughts and my ego loves to make up stories with these thoughts. There is a never ending supply. Ego prefers clinging to everything that passes by, either by embracing it with full on affectionate attachment or pushing it away with repulsed rejection and thereby summoning the tar baby effect.

We lead full and complicated lives both together and separately. We both have two income generating, energy and time consuming jobs; nine children; 14 grandchildren; one mother with Alzheimer's; books to read; films to watch; concerts to attend; Enlightenment Intensives; Yoga class (that we keep missing due to other engagements); friends to visit; lovers to love; not to mention toilet bowls to scrub and taxes to prepare. We've continually got piles of work sitting in our pending boxes, waiting to be processed. We've go lots of communicating to do!

Sometimes I think that perhaps the burden of my sharing is too much. But I've learned to share without the ulterior motive of judging Jerry or manipulating him to change. My ego knows how to do this well--"If I share with him how much this hurts me then surely he will stop doing it." Maybe he will and maybe he won't, that's not the point of communication. I don't really want him to change (most of the time anyway) what I really want is to share my truth of the moment and to be understood. And notwithstanding the fact that we take gentle care of one another's hearts, he and I are both getting better at holding on to self rather than kowtowing to the other's fears. I'm gaining more insight into the covert motivations and strategies that attach themselves to my truths in order for my ego to feel safe. As I share my secrets with Jerry with an open heart, including my strategies and ulterior motives, I notice that my "ego needs" lessen their death grip and their power over me is loosened. I'm learning to use communication as communion. I share with an open heart in order to be received with an open heart, without judgment or opinion, to be welcomed and understood by another and this helps me to better welcome and understand myself.

The point of sharing is for the information to leave the realm of the mind and to enter into knowingness. The mind fills up with things that are not fully experienced, integrated and understood. Thoughts and feelings, all those little things left unsaid become suspended in our minds, stuck in our bodies and then build walls between people, barriers between hearts which start to feel unsafe and close down. Full on, unadulterated communication that is fully received, clears the mind and one becomes ready to directly experience the truth of oneself and the truth of another.

Yes, today I was having a wave of recognition of the power, the blessing of mine and Jerry's relationship. We have created a special communion with each other through communication. I've experienced the truth as a sacrament. Our journey has been profound. We do good work together. We make great love. Great sex too.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

The Fire Of Love

The Love Intensive I attended February 15-18 was wonderful. My friend Osha who was to master the Intensive had come down with the terrible flu bug that's going around and it had turned into bronchitis. Jon, whom I had taken the master's training with in 2006 had stepped up to walk in her golden slippers, mastering his first intensive and did a fine job.
Jerry had two gigs that weekend so he wasn't able to attend. But he drove me there on his way to the Bay Area, which added 2 hours to his normally 3 hour trip. On Monday he worked from 7:30 to 3:00 and then drove the 3 hours to pick me up and another 3 hours home. What a guy. He is so good to me.
Opening to the truth of love is an incredible thing. More of what I've already been working on in my life right now just continued coming up for me. That, and some new stuff too. I tend to get lots of images during the Intensives and I had this thought to eventually tattoo all of them on various parts of my body. I have none just yet but that will change soon--I have been planning on getting a tattoo for at least 12 plus years now and one of these days it will happen!
One of the new images that arrived this time was a wild horse that I'm riding bareback--Love, taking me for the ride of my life. With no reins I'm hanging on for dear life to the horse's mane. It's a beautiful golden color like the fields and mountains in the summer when the grass is dry.
I also saw images of the sacred heart. Love was piercing me deeply and pulling out wooden stakes and chards of glass from old wounds, exposing raw vulnerabilities that were dripping blood. It hurt, but the pain was a good pain, like when one is receiving a really deep massage on very sore muscles and it hurts so good you don't want it to ever stop. The sacred heart had a sword through it, and wings. I was flying in love, bleeding life force and leaving traces of my pain behind me.
I had some fun memories such as the one of my first love affair. I was in sixth grade, away for a week or two at summer camp. I met a boy named Larry and we hooked up. He was an eighth grader who gave me his really cool silver and black onyx cross to wear. It symbolized pretty much the same thing as a guy giving a girl his ring-- we were going steady. This was my first foray into the world of monogamy, promising myself to a guy as his one and only. We hung out together and kissed a lot, enjoying each other's company. When our time at camp was ending and everyone was lining up to get on the buses that would take us home to our respective cities, Larry came up and asked for his cross back. I know he still liked me but he didn't have the skills to part ways with me gracefully. We lived in different cities, were probably never going to see each other again, and he wanted his cross back. I was sad but I understood, kind of. We called each other once or twice and talked long distance on our parent's phone bills before it was completely over.

A month or so later the letter arrived. It was from a boy named Steve. He was Larry's best friend at camp and I remembered him vaguely. Unbeknownst to me, Steve had fallen head over heels in love with me at camp. In his letter he reintroduced himself and explained the pure hell he had gone through, refraining from interjecting himself into my and Larry's love affair. But when Larry had basically broken it off with me at camp, Steve's heart soared, and then later when he and Larry spoke on the phone and it was confirmed that we were no longer a couple, he felt released from his bond of loyalty to his friend and decided to write me. To this day I still remember the words with which he ended his love letter to me:
Adrienne, I want to throw myself down at your feet and tell you how I feel about you. I love you and God bless you. Steve

We corresponded for several years. He lived in the Petaluma area and one of his neighbors was Charles Schultz, the creator of Charlie Brown and the Peanuts characters. He even sent me a couple of the Peanuts books along with other trinkets of his affection. Now I try to remember if they were actually autographed. I think they were. Darn, why didn't I hold on to them?

I had memories of the unconditional love of my grandmother, Mary Jane and my grandfather, Ivan. I have so many memories of my grandfather who died when I was only two years old. He was holding me when he had his heart attack--first gently placing me down on the floor before falling out of his chair and dying. I remember this event vividly.

My mother had moved home to live with my grandparents when I was a few weeks old. She laid me in my crib at night to sleep but I would have none of that and neither would my grandfather. I would cry and he would rescue me, putting me to bed between him and my grandmother. I slept between them until he died and then I slept with my grandmother until my mother remarried and we moved away when I was six. My grandmother was the first true love of my life and Jerry the second. He even sang me that song the day we were married...true love is hard to find... My grandmother moved back in with us when I was ten and shared a room with me. Later, when she had dementia, she went to live in a care home. I would visit her often and sometimes take her for drives. She would always sing to me--songs with words like:
Silver streaks upon the gold, darling I am growing old...
Oh my poor Nellie Mae, they have taken you away, and I'll never see my darling anymore, they have taken you to Georgia to wile your life away, while I toil in the cotton and the cane.
I was seventeen and pregnant with my first child when she died. She was ninety-two.

Love was melting me. I felt like yellow butter in a pot on a low flame. I was slow cooking and all my impurities where rising to the top to be scooped off. The fire of love was transforming me into golden amber colored ghee, a wonderful ingredient for cooking with powerful medicinal qualities.
I imagined myself fire walking. I shared this with my dyad partner explaining, You know, those long fire pits where people walk on the hot coals and don't get burned--but sometimes they do! I laughed and said, I don't have any blisters yet.

Lots kept coming up about the Anam Cara, soul friend. I was raised in Christian churches where we sang lots of gospel songs. I remember one that seemed to relate to the Anam Cara:
What a friend we have in Jesus, all our sins and hopes to bear. What a
privilege to carry, everything to the Lord in prayer.
This hymn reflects much of what we do in the dyads, meeting with a soul friend and sharing whatever arises a a result of our contemplation--bearing our sins and our hopes. It's a privilege to participate in such a prayer.

Once, before slipping into sleeping contemplation for the night I thought, Adrienne, you are playing with fire and you might get burned. Yep, I answered, I sure am. And I won't stop. Let the Fire of Love burn me but I won't stop. I'll never stop. Let it burn me to ashes if it must.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

It's Not About Sex, It's About Self

Eric Francis in offering a series of articles called It's Not About Sex, It's About Self. Great reading. My husband paid for the subscription and I thought that was the only way to access it but he offers a link to the articles so here it is. There are four parts posted so far. Good stuff on jealousy, compersion and the like. I highly recommend.

Michael Franti - One Step Closer To You (Live)

To Patrick

Anam Cara

Happy Birthday Soul Friend. As a lover in the a dyad at the Love Intensive said to me yesterday, "The eyes don't lie."

Your presence in my life has taught me much about love and friendship. I hold your beauty and accept you as you are. Your light awakens me to my true nature. Thank you for coming into my life my sweet anam cara.

From John O'Donohue's book, Anam Cara:

Human presence is a creative and turbulent sacrament, a visible sign of
invisible grace. Nowhere is there such intimate and frightening access to the
mysterious. Friendship is the sweet grace that liberates us to approach,
recognize, and inhabit this adventure.

It is strange to be here. The mystery never leaves you alone. . . . We take each
other's sounds and make patterns, predictions, benedictions, and blasphemies.
Each day, our tribe of language holds what we call the world together. Yet the
uttering of the word reveals how each of us relentlessly creates. Everyone is an
artist. Each person brings sound out of silence and coaxes the invisible to
become visible.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Drink Your Wine

"Baby, sweet baby, bring me your gift. What surprise you gonna hit me

--Lucinda Williams
I want to drink your wine

and drown drunken

in your ocean

tasting only sacredness.

--Adrienne inspired by Rumi

A Valentine Poem by Francette Curelli

From my friend John's calendar.

On the way home in the starry night we hold hands,
wonder what his parents must have been like,
what cruelty may have happened to him,
and you show me the belt of Orion,
clean and shining and always in place.
Remember this forever, then:
I cannot imagine not loving you,
even when this body is gone.
So if I ever die, look up into the dark
and find me hundreds of times there,
each place you can faintly imagine a line
tracing the shape of a valentine.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Sacred Heart

The Glaze of Sobriety

Wow, what a week it's been. I've been up and down and all around, inside, outside and everywhere in between. I've been doing some fire walking.

Jerry and I left Friday for Harbin Hot Springs. We spent 3 days and 2 nights there, soaking, sleeping, fucking. We hiked just a little. On Saturday night we went to the wonderful little theatre there and watched Across The Universe. I really enjoyed it a lot and encourage everyone to see it if you haven't yet. I've posted a You Tube trailer of it below. We eat a couple of dinners and one breakfast at the restaurant and were very well fed.

On Sunday I did my hot and cold ritual dips. After soaking and relaxing in the warm pool, I dip in the hot pool (115 to 125 degrees), then the cold pool. Then I sit and meditate in front of Kwan Yin. I did 7 rounds of Hot Dip-Cold Dip-Kwan Yin. With each successive round I'm able to stay longer in both the hot and cold water and it produces quite an altered state. One of my favorite modes of getting high.
Always She hears, and Her Presence consoles the grieving, cools the burning brow, relieves the pain. Kwan Yin means "She who hears the cries of sentient beings."
I've been practicing staying present in the moment lots this last week. Breathing and allowing big waves of energy to rush through my body. I've been experiencing waves of fear that seem to stem from deeply rooted beliefs about love, relationship, and abandonment. My jealousy is still here but I'm not experiencing it as often and it's interesting because I don't really have many stories attached to it. It's very visceral rather than originating in my mind. I think it's partly my survival instinct.

I've also received another lesson in trusting my intuition. There was something going on for me last week that I was interpreting as jealousy but was actually a need for balance. I was trying to maintain equilibrium within my relationship while dealing with the new and unknown. I was being bombarded with too much stimulation all at once and it was taking a toll on me. I had all these pieces of the puzzle as to what as actually going on for me but they weren't fitted together. Then something transpired that hit me like a brick and all of a sudden the picture appeared, like one of those 3-d pics with another image hidden beneath and you just need to stare at it from the right perspective for it to appear. When I explained what was going on for me with H., he got it and offered a helping hand.

Later in the week, while we were eating in the restaurant at Harbin, there were these free "Valentines" which an astrologer by the name of Hunter Reynolds, had written up in celebration of Valentine's Day.
It seems that "the bulk of winter is made up of two signs: Capricorn and Aquarius, both of which share Saturn as a ruler." His purpose in this writing was to explain how romance got "embedded in the cold heart of winter". I don't remember how he made the leap and brought Venus, The Goddess of Love into the picture but he made the comparison, "Venus is to Saturn what flirtation is to marriage". Well, I didn't so much relate to all of what he was saying, as I think he basically meant that flirtation is dangerous to marriage and I obviously don't agree with that, but he had some good insight to offer nevertheless. The characteristics of Saturn are "gravity, responsibility, discipline, maturity, aging and death" and he points out that "Relationships that don't eventually embrace the clear boundaries and agreements of Saturn usually degenerate into hurt and drama." He says, "Saturn is the kiln in which the clay of romantic love gets fired." I like that. And, "Only relationships smeared with the glaze of sobriety and shared purpose survive the heat uncracked." I do think there is a lot of merit to this actually, even though he stated it too unequivocally serious for my taste. It's related to the balance I was seeking with H. when the going got rough for me. This term, "the glaze of sobriety" hit me deep with a resounding, YES! That's the perfect way to say what I was asking for.

Monogamy, non-monogamy, polyamory...whatever relationship style one embraces, if your relationship is one you are committed to, one that you intend to sustain over the long term, continuing to grow the love and companionship until death and perhaps beyond, I do believe "a glaze of sobriety" needs to be maintained, within reason, new relationship energy or what have you, notwithstanding.

In regards to the posts I've made on theorectical polyamory--well, there is movement right now, yes indeed. And lots of emotions. Oh, we also took a yoga class while at Harbin and during one of the asanas the instructor said something about emotions being energy-in-motion. I'm working to keep that emotional energy moving, allowing it to coarse through my body and move on. It feels really funky when it gets stuck inside and starts to stagnate.

I'm happy. Mostly happy, most of the time. I'm happy even with the stuff that has been hard because I'm doing what I've been wanting to do for a long time and it's a challenge I'm definitely willing to meet. I've been a bit apprehensive here and there for sure, like, "Oh, no, oh fuck, now I've gone and done it. I'm getting what I've been asking for and damn, I don't like this much." But those moments pass and are just a small part of me--a sometimes very needy and powerful part of me that wants to have her voice heard, to be comforted, loved and cherished, and sometimes she threatens to throw a tantrum, but she hasn't yet. And she's but a small part nevertheless. I give thanks that my dear husband has been honoring that part of me very sweetly, along with all my other parts too and I'm so appreciative of who he is in my life and the love he offers me.

I've been reading Compersion--Meditations on Using Jealousy as a Path to Unconditional Love by Dr. Deborah Taj Anapol. It's a e-book that you can order here. Here's one of the meditations:

Jealousy Is An Initiation

When jealousy calls know that you are being tested. An initiation awaits you. Will you allow the ego to prevail in its demands for comfort, or will you choose a path which brings you face to face with the unknown? Can you expand to include the unacceptable or do you close the door?

Yes, jealousy signals an opportunity to awaken from lifelong sleep, to take a leap into higher consciousness and even live to tell about it. Here is your chance to take another step on the path to limitless love. Here is a compelling reason to increase your awareness.

When jealousy arrives, uninvited, do not let it rule you.

Instead ask yourself:

"Where do I need to grow?"

"What am I refusing to allow into my life?"

Where do I need to let go?"

Across The Universe - Trailer

Aaron Neville - One Love/People Get Ready

I once had a dream of being in bed with all five of the Neville Brothers. Just all of us there together as friends, loving each other.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Sexual Healing

For you baby. Marvin Gaye sings it at the Grammy Awards in 1983

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Frozen Grand Central

Very Cool

A Song Before You Vote Today

You can bomb the world to pieces but you can't bomb it into peace.

Fat Tuesday

spatio brevi spem longam reseces.
dum loquimur, fugerit invida aetas:
carpe diem quam minimum credula postero.

Scale back your long hopes to a short period.
Even as we speak, envious time is running away from us.
Seize the day, trusting little in the future.

Today is Mardi Gras. That's French for Fat Tuesday. It's also known as Carnival, Fasching, and Shrove Tuesday among other things, with roots probably going back to more pagan times. The dates of this celebration are different, depending in which country you reside. In New Orleans, Carnival starts on *Ephiphany, January 6th and ends on Fat Tuesday so carpi diem! What is your pleasure? Seise the day! And Californians, don't forget to vote today!

*Epiphany is a Christian holiday celebrating the visit of the Magi (The Three Wise Men), or the baptism of Jesus.

It is also the sudden realization or comprehension of the essence or meaning of something.

Monday, February 4, 2008

Mitelli's 1678 series

Giuseppe Maria Mitelli (1634-1718).
1678 series
‘There’s no love without jealousy’;
‘He doesn't know peace, nor does he esteem it, who hasn’t first tried war.’

Thanks to spamula.


Sluts Need Respect Too

Love Rebel

I love being a rebel of love with you.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

A Bit Indulgent

I'm thinking that maybe I need to clarify something. I'm doing well. I know I gave myself a C- and all but I'm a tough grader. Saying I'm doing well isn't to say I'm not having a hard time, but many good things in life are hard. Maybe I'll do a post on good hard things like I did on good slow things recently.

Truthfully, I've been being a bit indulgent in expressing how intense what I'm going through is on me right now. It is intense and it is a challenge, no doubt. And I'm handling it. I'm loving, I'm laughing and cuddling and sexing and living my life with courage, faith and compassion. I'm getting what I want and I'm glad to be here. I'm happy along with all those other pathetic things I've been experiencing. I've just been exposing my vulnerabilities and trying to be transparent with my process because it's very significant to me and I'm learning lots about myself and about love and relationships. I'm glad I'm here and I'm here by choice. I love my life. Most of it anyway.

My house is full of family and friends watching the Super Bowl and eating chili and corn bread. Everyone's rooting for the Giants here in this house. I'm not a sports fan myself but I loving watching people get so excited. I love Super Bowl commercials too.

The Death Of Being Your One and Only

Post Traumatic Stress. Memories of withholds, deceptions, being left out, bold soul gazing lies. I have trust issues. Abandonment issues. Old ones from you, older ones from childhood that are resurfacing after not being triggered for a long time. I hear the calling for a deeper healing of old wounds, digging out old relationship beliefs and constructs that no longer work for me.

Me going within to find the courage to have faith in you, in us, compassion for your new relationship energy and for my own fears. Wanting to be more advanced and skillful at this than I am. Wanting to rejoice in the opportunity to grow, to embrace what I've been asking for, to walk my talk. I just want to have fun here. Release the drama and loosen up. Damn, why must I always be doing deep, spiritual discovering my authentic fucking self work? The truth is though, we've been relaxing a lot. I'm actually envious I think. I want what you have. Share, with me please. Bring me in from my self inflicted cold. Make me a part of your newfound inspiration.

Saturday, February 2, 2008

It's A Boy!

Gillette has a new grandbaby today. Happy Birthday Nona! Sweet baby love to you and yours.

It's Not Fair, Dammit!

My Current Crucifixtion

Being so blessed as to live right in downtown Chico, Jerry and I have this little Saturday morning ritual where we walk downtown, (usually to the Farmer's Market if our favorite coffee cart is there) get some coffee and socialize with friends. On our way home we often stop by The Discovery Shoppe, a little second hand store where we pick up inexpensive little odds and ends. Today I spend $1 on a metal crucifix to hang up somewhere around the house, probably in my bathroom. This crucifix, Jesus hanging on the cross, is in honor of my pathetic self. I've been enjoying, well truly not enjoying, but I've been compelled recently to hang myself upon the cross of jealousy and suffering. I've been in my pain body a lot this last week. So it's a little reminder of the fruitlessness of my ways. But I am trying to be tender with myself because I'm really in a way right now.

Thing is, I have lots of theorectic understanding. I set my life up very intuitively. It seems that many people first have experiences and thereafter, rearrange their lives and change their behaviors to match their experiences. My tendency is to intuitively know things without actually experiencing them, some part of me still gets it on a very deep level. Perhaps I just have very deep insights. Then I go about arranging my life and behavior to match some theory or concept I've had some insight about, that I deeply identify with. Eventually I tend to have experiences that match up. What I'm going through right now is one of those shifts from intellectual and intuitive understanding to being in the midst of the actual experience. This is my opportunity to just be in my stuff, hold on to myself and just sit with it. I'm not having an easy time and I give myself about a C- at this point.

whimper whimper