A Foolish Consistency?

We’ve all made a set of decisions or hold a set of assumptions about what works for you; how you’ve constructed a life.  In this, we’ve all made different choices.  For some, their primary dedication is to their career or a cause.  Others dedicate themselves to the family that surrounds them.  Some choose to not have children.  There are many, many large and small decisions that we make that we expect to be more or less persistent.  These so-called life choices frame a lot of  our life’s experience.  Who we primarily interact with, whom we love, and the character of the challenges we more or less intentionally face.  There are times when it’s really hard to sort out whether sticking to one of these life choices is a mark of foolish consistency or a wise application of what one knows works.

Sometimes life serves up challenges to our choices.  They can shake you to your foundation.  And, even though we view these principles as the rock upon which our lives are built, we may find that our foundations are easily cracked. I honestly don’t know if reinforcing and re-cementing the cracks is the wise action or letting things break apart.  With my old construction of my life, I found that the patch works were too extensive.  I had no choice but to tear down the ramparts and start again seated firmly on fresh soil.

And… and then I fell in love.  Yes, again.  But, sometimes head does in fact flip over heels.  Unfortunately, that relationship fell apart under the weight of polyamory. A rare and special love had to end because she’s monogamish and I’m a flaming polymore. We tried mightily to build a bridge across that divide. A crazy love bridge to support and cradle our hearts high above the rapids below. We never made it across.  But, somewhere in the middle, the bridge clearly collapsing, I wondered “if poly can cause me this much pain, is it really the right thing? Am I sticking to something that sounds good in the vague hope that something just right will come along while ignoring the bounty in front of me?” (more…)


There are some days when tears rest easy on the eyes.  Days when I can’t seem to grab my emotional equilibrium.  Sometimes that emotional tenderness lasts for many days.  It all started when I breezed into my therapist’s office all cocksure as if I had the world figured out.  Well, of course, you know how this ends.  His probing and probative questions did their job well.  They opened me up.  But, by doing so, they also landed me squarely on uncertain ground.  I have yet to regain my emotional footing.  And so, tears rest easy on my eyes, neither spilling forward nor retreating.

“When things are shaky and nothing is working, we might realize that we are on the verge of something.  We might realize that this is a very vulnerable and tender place, and that tenderness can go either way.  We can shut down and feel resentful or we can touch in on that throbbing quality. ”    ―  Pema Chödrön

But, the particulars of this shifting sand aren’t really the point of me telling you this story.  It is about how intensely alone I feel at these moments.  And, the reality that it is somewhat self-inflicted.  You see, this shaky tenderness is where I feel most frightened, vulnerable. A spot where I have an excess of feeling and few answers.  It is a place where my analytical, problem solving mind has no facts from which to derive an appropriate solution.  It is even a struggle to describe the nature of the problem itself.  Words fail me.  In essence, my IQ is of little use and my EQ is unprepared, a weak muscle unaccustomed to exercise.  And so, I’m left in a battle with myself mostly unarmed. (more…)