It has been a very very long 4 days. The roof and the floor fell apart on me yesterday, internally speaking.
Let me backtrack briefly over the last 4 days.
Saturday went well at the company picnic, and no one at the office has said anything to me at all about T being introduced as "J’s girlfriend" to them. There were a couple of surprised looks, and one fellow who seems to just be expressive says "Oh!" when he got introduced, but then introduced all of us to his partner with a very happy smile. I think he was glad to not be the only "unorthodox" person at the picnic.
Saturday night, as J and I still hadn’t had a chance to be together, J decided to ask me to sleep on the couch so he could have some time to himself and then he would come out after he’d taken some time (his idea of "me time" is getting on the computer and "killin dudes" for a few hours) and have me come to bed. He didn’t tell T about this, nor did I. He came to get me at about 4, and at 4:20, T was at the door and falling apart. J stayed up with her until 6 and then came to bed. She was back at the door at 9 to find out if we were going to church, which we weren’t as J had been up literally all night. Then she ended up coming in, still upset, to lay beside him.
She said that she doesn’t feel I want her with us. I was blown away. I just introduced her to my office. My friends all know about her. My family pretty much knows about her. I reminded her of these things and that while I understand that she’s upset, that feeling isn’t real rational. Turns out what she was meaning was that she was seeing how unhappy I was being when she kept coming to the door. Well, that was bad timing, repeatedly. It was getting to be a bit much.
T said something to J that I couldn’t hear and then they spoke in very hushed tones to one another and I couldn’t really hear much of what was being said at all. I finally decided that as J and I weren’t going to get the time we’d been trying for over the previous four days, I would get up. I kissed J, said "Maybe tomorrow," to let him know I wasn’t giving up on us, and started to get up. T says "What! What was that about!?" J tells me to leave for a little while and then to come back.
Now, I don’t know what was said, only what I was told, and what J told me was that he told T that she’s been cutting me out, cutting everyone out, and demanding all his time and attention and not leaving him time for himself. T promptly spent the day all torn up, crying. Which meant that J spent the day trying to comfort her and had no time (again) for himself or anyone else. Then we went to a cookout that one of J’s friends had invited us all to go to. T looked sad all night and didn’t interact much with anyone.
J stayed with her that night as Sundays are her days by default anyway. Monday I took the day off work and it just worked out (again) that J and I had a little over an hour of real time together before T came home. I was NOT happy to see her. I really just wanted time with J… badly. I knew that once she was home, that wouldn’t happen, and of course it didn’t. T started a fight with my daughter, I had to go take care of daughter, J went and spent his time hanging out with T.
By the time dinner (which didn’t end up being a family event where we could all relax together like I wanted thanks to the fight) was over and I was cleaning up the kitchen, I was fighting my 4th anxiety attack in 48 hrs. Then my body flew me for a loop. I stopped breathing and my chest exploded in a flash of pain that would have made an atomic bomb proud. I remember grabbing for the sink and trying to force myself to breathe, and then I remember being curled up against the cabinet with J at my side and someone saying "911." I managed to signal no for an ambulance and to make the universal squishy signal with my hand to have someone get my inhaler. I was so out of it J had to hold the inhaler. It took two hits close together to start my breathing again, and even then it hurt like fire. Then I realized I was literally soaked in sweat… as in, dripping from my hair. I’m still not sure, but maybe the ambulance woulda been a good idea? I think I may have actually had a small heart attack, or perhaps the bad heart valve I had decided to quit again, as it has in the past. Either way, it was scary.
I went to comfort my daughter after I recovered, J went back to T’s room to talk to her.
The three of us ended up in T’s room talking about things. We agreed that we’d start planning "date nights" once a week for each of us girls with J, and once a week for the two of us. We went and had coffee together, which we haven’t done in a long time, and when we went home, J and I retired to my room.
*Finally* we had time alone, uninterrupted, though we were both wiped out, and *finally* we crossed those last few barriers together and reconnected. By yesterday morning, I didn’t want to leave for work, I wanted to stay right there in his arms and just soak in the feeling of our relationship being restored. But, work called, and off I went.
While I was at work yesterday, I got news that they’re turning our office into a call center. We have 30 days or a little less, to be ready on the phones and taking inbound calls all day every day. I have worked in call centers. I will not do it again.
I’ve been asking the gods to show me a way out and to make sure that I didn’t miss the opportunity when it came. Honestly, I’m so fed up with tech work I could scream. It’s not where I want to be, and it’s not the life I want for myself. Well, there I go. Writing on the wall duly noted.
By the time I got home, I was in a near panic, and then T and J are going to take off and spend the entire night together. I fell apart, completely. J got mad at me… which I don’t get, if T is upset, he’s full of compassion and understanding… when I do, he gets mad at me. T said I was making her feel guilty, and I’m sitting here thinking "It took J and I 4 days to have a chance to reconnect because she couldn’t leave us alone and NOW she feels bad?!? Wtf?"
I did realize that the majority of my reaction was thanks to an ex who had me pack my things every time that I lost a job. I went to T and J just before dinner and told them I’d figured out the reason I lost it, and asked if I could ask them what I hoped was a very stupid question. I burst into tears and managed to choke out, "If I lose my job, you guys won’t make me leave will you?"
Both looked horrified at the idea. T was the first one to me, saying "Sweetie, NO! Of course we wouldn’t!" and J was right there as well, putting his arms around me and saying "No, honey, your job isn’t why you’re here in the first place."
I had to clarify a bit, and both were quite supportive, assuring me again, that no, they wouldn’t do that and reminding me that I’m not where I was then and they are neither one that person. I really needed that right then. It didn’t make me stop crying, but I did feel a lot safer.
When bedtime rolled around, J came to tuck me in and told me that yes, he thinks that he connected with me as deeply as I had felt with him, and no, he won’t be pulling away from me like that again. He also reassured me that yes, things will be fine and tonight he and T will sit with me and help me think about what to do with the rest of my life.
Totally not related to polyamory, but, still a joy of life. What DO you do with your life when you suddenly open your eyes and realize you can chase any dream that you want to chase? What do you do when you’ve had a series of one grind after another for 20 yrs and suddenly, you realize that you don’t have to keep doing that anymore… it’s time and your life can be what you want at last? What do you do when you find out that despite one series of upheavals after another, your family is really a family, and they’re backing you fully in any course you choose to pursue?
Apparently my reaction is to fall apart and panic and want to run and hide in the grind where I’m miserable but I know what to expect… and at the same time feel this small seed of hope and of excitement that it’s time, finally, for my dreams… after many years of helping others build their dreams and thinking that mine would never come.