Saturday, July 23, 2011

End point

I no longer continue this blog.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

let me fix it, starting with me

Been kind of a busy couple of weeks for me mentally. One of my Ladies has been severely weakened by all the stress and fear of these last two years. At the moment she's on meds for it and so has been advised not to drive. This leaves her basically trapped in the house when her sister and I aren't here. Granted, she has alternatives, but all of them are at best inconvenient. Plus, and this will be important later, she hates to to be any trouble. "I don't want to be any trouble" she'll say. And if I'm not paying attention she'll do without rather than bother me. She tries to handle it alone. Not in a sneaky way, but to avoid being any trouble to me.

So the other day I come home, I'd taken a short term job on top of what I normally do to help make up for the income I've lost over the last couple of years. I'd worked 15 hours, and I'd driven a total of 3 more to do it, so I was ready to call it a day. But as soon as I'd eaten, I was informed my Lady needed some things from the store. She was polite, not at all out of line, but she'd been home all day with her sister who'd been off that day, and they'd already been out a couple of times. I really lost my temper. I mean, they couldn't handle this? I didn't yell or any of that. I got up and took her to the store, but I'm certain it was obvious I was angry. Intellectually I felt justified in my anger, but for some reason something nagged at me. Something felt like I was out of line to have taken issue with this situation. But I was tired, and I was scheduled for the same kind of day next day, so I just went to bed. My reaction bugged me for several days but I kept telling myself I was justified.

In previous posts I've mentioned my garden. It's large and pretty intricate. It's electrically lit by about half a dozen lights or so, but because of the layout there are pools of shadow as you walk through it. Unfortunately, the stress has caused my Lady to suffer a certain level of vision impairment, and pools of shadow are a serious issue for her. Not a big deal, a few cheap tiki torches and we're back in business. Except last night the torches ran out of fuel, and I didn't have any to refill them. Now for a while in the military, my job was expedient methods recovery. When they tested my team the evaluators literally removed everything they thought would be helpful in making our needed repairs, intentionally did damage, and then told us to fix it. We scored well by successfully using things that were in no way intended to be used the way we used them. Along comes this issue, and I am going to fix it. Hmmm, what to do, what to do?

Immediately Lady points out she has her flashlight. (Due to her condition I got her a couple of super-bright mini lights she is able to carry conveniently, and she is supposed to have them at all times just in case) I responded that I knew, and kept working on the problem. "But I have my flashlight" she says. "Good girl, I heard you". It occurs to me that I have some gel fuel in the house, that stuff you usually see under the chafing dishes at catered events. "But, I have my flashlight. I can just use that. Don't take any trouble". I respond "Sweetie, I KNOW, I heard you, thank you, now let me fix it the way I want to". So the gel fuel, with a bit of finagling, became a garden torch and the problem was solved.

Fortunately this time I pretty well hid that I was frustrated with her, because I knew she was just trying to be a good girl and no trouble. I needed to chill so I went in and popped in "Black Rain" by Ozzy (So now you get a sense of one part of my musical taste) and half way through this song pops up called "Lay Your world On Me". (Youtube video here: It's not my favorite song by any means, and it doesn't really apply overall to our relationship. But the first time I played the CD and heard it, it really grabbed my attention because I work a difficult schedule, and I have a LOT of responsibility at home as well. It is pretty intense a lot of the time, and the Ladies sometimes express concern for my well being. I always reply "Don't worry, I can carry the weight". The main refrain in this song is Lay your world on me, I can take the weight. And I realized that's been the problem these last two weeks. Last night she wouldn't let me pick up the weight. And she almost always tries not to. She doesn't hand it to me, I have to order her to give it to me. Her sister can be that same way in a different manner. She'll try to deal with her own personal problems because she thinks they aren't mine. And they are, that's the deal. If my Ladies car breaks down, that's my problem. If a Lady has a doctors appointment she's worried about, I go because that's my worry. I have told them repeatedly, they don't have problems, they have me. I have problems. I may ask them to fix the problem by doing exactly [this], but it's up to me to find the solution and make it possible to implement, via money, creating time in their schedule, or whatever. Stop taking my problem!! The irony is I don't find them an unwarranted burden until they try not to be a burden. Then they can be a real pain in the ass. I want that weight. I want to take care of both of them. That's part of what is fulfilling to me.

And then it occurred to me that maybe that's my fault. Last week in full view of her sister, one Lady layed her world on me, and I dropped the weight. Not only did I make it clear I was annoyed at the inconvenience, but I'm certain she felt like she had been a huge burden which would be just plain punishment to her. Absolutely not acceptable. So, I think it's time I applied a little self correction, and manned up. With apologies to The Hollies, they ain't heavy, their my Ladies.

The Hollies are here for you youngsters out there.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

A nice relief

If you've read the blog for a while, you know life has been kicking us all this time. We've been hunkered down and simply enduring the onslaught, awaiting the time when fortune and opportunity turn our way again and we can counterattack. Lately we've even gotten in some solid counter punches. Something I learned in the military however, is to snatch what pleasures can be had even in the midst of tragedy and chaos. We had a local music-fest today, so I took the Ladies up to see it. A couple of my favorite local bands were playing and we grabbed seats in the shade and just stayed all day. The music was good, and lots of sexy young women were dancing around. I spent triple what it should have cost to eat the food you can only get a street fairs. We had a great time.

There were bittersweet moments as well though. There was a very young girl there, maybe three or four, and her father was letting her hold his hands as he twirled her around in the air while she giggled hysterically. Another time a girl of about eight was on the "dance floor" just doing what 8-year-olds do when they dance. Sort of a spastic jerking around. These were reminders that our Goddaughter has moved out. I had prepared myself for the fact that she would probably want to get her own place for college. It never occurred to me that she might choose to accept an offer to go to high school halfway acrossed the country from us. I used to twirl her, and carry her, and watch her dance. I wasn't ready to lose her yet. I love her, and I miss her terribly.

Still, it was good to hear the Ladies laugh and sing. It was good to eat ice cream in the beating sun and just be together. It feels good to love them so much.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

It means "Go to Hell"

I'm a history buff. Tales of endurance and courage leave me spellbound. I have several favorites, but one I like pretty well is the tale of Brigadier General Anthony McAuliffe, commander 101 Airborne Division (The Screamin' Eagles) during WWII. You may be familiar with it. At one point he and his men were cut off and surrounded. They were literally freezing because they had been rushed into the action and had not been issued winter gear, and now the worst winter weather in decades had descended on Germany. The German Army surrounding them prevented resupply by ground, and the weather prevented air operations. They were running out of ammo, food, medical supplies, pretty much everything. The German commander, after a week of bombardment against the Americans, sent a note demanding surrender. General McAuliffe sent back a one word reply, "Nuts". The Colonel delivering the message had to explain the meaning of the word to the Germans. He told them that "In plain English, it means go to Hell". I sometimes think about that outrageous act of defiance in the face of certain defeat when things get really bad for me.

I think of it because the men held out still, even after that demand. They did not surrender and they did not allow themselves to be overrun. They held the ground as ordered until General Patton's third army arrived. I find it interesting to note that most historians will say the Screamin' Eagles were rescued by Patton. However, the 101st Airborne Division itself points out to this day that their orders were to hold that ground until relieved and they did so. Their relief (Army ground forces) was merely late. Once the Army did arrive, the 101st was ordered to advance and attack, which they did, liberating another 4 towns in the next week and three more the week after that. The lesson I take from that is that no matter how bad things look, how overwhelming the odds seem, or how hopeless one feels defeat is never certain until one quits fighting.

I've been thinking about all my family has endured, all we've survived, and all we still face. I've thought about all the nay-sayers and disbelievers that thought the consummate good girl and stereotypical bad boy were doomed from the start, especially when we married less than a year after meeting. Of all those who insisted poly relationships never last when we began to explore this avenue. Of the many who snickered with satisfaction each time a poly partner did not work out for us, and of all those who yell the louder as year after year ticks by now with the Lady we found and bonded to. I'm afraid I must deliver to them bad news.

Today marks 21 years of marriage for my wife and I. The last decade we have shared with our partner. Our relationship is not on the edge of collapse. We are not at each others throats. While we have been laid low by life for a time we stand united as one still, and are growing stronger every day. To my Ladies I say I love you more everyday. Every night I think I could not possibly feel more love for you than I feel as I fall asleep, and every morning I awake to find I do.

And yet I know there are still those who hope we will fall. Who long to see us fail ourselves and each other. Who insist we have no chance. I hope they are listening now. I have something to say to them as well.


Thursday, July 29, 2010

This topic was GG's idea, and it was a good one.....

Last night I read Greengirls latest post. In case you haven't read it, it's here: In sum it basically discusses how she feels about never fitting in even as a kid, and how that affects her sometimes. I had a really strong reaction to the comments that had been offered by the time I read the post. I was a bit taken aback at the attitudes expressed in the comments, and that's what has motivated me to write this tonight. It’s important to remember that the views expressed here are mine and Greengirl will get them just as the rest of you do, when (And that’s IF) she even reads this blog. The views are mine, whatever you think of them. Please remember that. And Greengirl, I know I never asked but thanks for letting me crib your notes.

I thought I shared the pain of what GG was describing until I read the comments. But the comments seemed to me to just minimize the things that were described. The impact of them on a person. Advice saying just ignore the other folks and do what you do, just be yourself, just be happy. These types of statements fail to acknowledge the real struggle that living out of sync with the entire world can be. One doesn’t just CHOOSE to be fulfilled, one needs to be in an environment where they actually ARE fulfilled so they can feel it. My question is simply this; Where in all the great wide world are the other people like me? I want to meet other people like myself. When you leave the vanilla world for the world of misfits and edgeplayers, and you realize you don't fit into the misfits' world either, where do you go for companionship? Where do you go so you can NOT feel like the weird one, at least for a little while? Where can you go so that you can be truly comfortable "Being yourself" with absolutely no lingering feeling of a potential need for defensiveness? In these circumstances, where can you expect to truly be allowed to completely "Be yourself"? I don't know.

I’m an intelligent, articulate, fairly tolerant guy and I find that often people I meet come to like me. But I never seem to meet people that ARE like me. People that feel just what I feel and think just what I think. I enjoy meeting people with ideas that complement mine, but isn’t it possible that somehow, somewhere there are a few people whose ideas MIRROR mine? Again, I only speak for myself, but it occasionally feels like I’m the stranger in a strange land, unlike anyone else I will ever meet. Unable to make myself truly understood by the world at large because my ideas are just a little too foreign and just a little too different to ever be completely accepted. Different in subtle ways maybe, but so deeply different that there is no overcoming it. It’s like dealing with a constant case of culture shock. You are always a little on guard.

The comments seemed to either not understand that fact, or just not consider it. When I hear a group discussing “TTWD”, in my ears that rings a bit hollow because the closest thing to a “We” I find in the life is the group made up of my Ladies and I. I hear these kinds of statements and I think “Who’s this WE I keep hearing about? Where is this wonderful group?” Because it feels a lot like my Ladies and I are out here all alone, even among friends. And what that means is, it gets lonely. You don’t just ignore that and find joy and happiness in life. It leaves a hole that sometimes is noticeable. A hole I for one would like to fill, if only I could find what I need to do it.

So, GG, assuming I understood your post correctly let me say I understand how you feel. I enjoy my uniqueness and individuality, as I think you enjoy yours. But I sometimes long for the anonymity that can be found in being just another face in a very like-minded crowd, and the comfort of knowing I'm with a group of people among whom nothing I do or believe will be challenged, or questioned, or seem out of place or the least little bit shocking. A place where there is no unique aspect of my day-to-day life to steal attention from whatever topic I am discussing. I want to brag about my Ladies talents without the basic nature of our relationship becoming the center of attention, and I want everyone in the room to see their spectacular magnificence without any chance of our everyday lives being a distraction to it. Sometimes I feel the absence of the existence of such a place very keenly. When I do I know intellectually that it's a passing feeling and everything is really all right, but there really is no way to just shrug that feeling off. It's a terribly uncomfortable feeling and it can be very persistent.

When I attempt to discuss that feeling, or see someone else attempting to, and I then see several opinions that "What others think doesn't matter, just shake it off", my feelings of being different are actually increased, because once again, I seem to be the only one not in sync. Once again I'm the one that doesn't seem to fit in. Ironic, isn't it?

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Captain's Personal Log; Stardate07282010

I think I've gained another smidgen of understanding into masochists, and therefore my Ladies as well. It's been a long day and I was tired when I got home. One Lady likes a fire in the pit out back, and I built her one even though it was late and had rained earlier. Wet wood isn't eager to burn, but I got it to do so. In the process I blistered and cut my hands a little. Lady 2 feels spoiled by virtue of having her coffee made in the morning. We have a machine that does it automatically. But tonight we are out of the usual bottled water, and I hate to use our tap stuff. So even though it was well after 11 and I get up early for work, off I went to the store. While there I noticed a guy looking at me, especially my hand. It was then I realized I was splitting wood and building the fire, then ran to the store, so I am dirty, smell like smoke, and this guy is staring at my hand because it's slowly dripping blood. It didn't really hurt, but it was bleeding. Intellectually I knew he was thinking I should be embarrassed. But the reality is I felt arrogant, cocky, even defiant. I felt like saying "Yes, my women are sitting in front of a crackling fire despite the earlier rain and the wet wood. They are enjoying that while yours is not because I bent a force of nature to my will for no other reason than I wanted it to be so. I will have coffee in the morning because I simply won't allow circumstances to decide otherwise for my Ladies. I wanted to tell this guy to his face that my Ladies were better off than whoever he happened to be with because I was stronger than him, and he couldn't have hacked it. I didn't of course, but it was really a powerful feeling. I don't plan on changing my life over this, but I think I get my partners better tonight than I did last night, and that's good.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Captain's Personal Log: Stardate 07172010

Life's been pretty good these last few days. I've had to sell all but one of my motorcycles, but I've gotten the last remaining bike out of storage and on the road and I've put in almost 200 miles in the last three days. I'm getting the budget back under control, and we've all agreed we want to re-establish the authority levels we used to enjoy before the storm I've mentioned began. But there's always a catch. One of my Ladies has a cousin that has been very ill and is not expected to last much longer. The Lady has gone to visit the cousin hoping to bring her some comfort. This means Fairlady 2 and I will be alone together, which for some reason invariably leads to a fight. I really don't know why, but it seems that every time she and I are in the "Traditional couple" roles, she get's nitpicky and naggy. It happened again, and I confess I shouldn't have been surprised but I was caught off guard. This time though I handled it differently. The complaint this time around had to do with the house not being kept to her satisfaction. This time I decided not to bother with logical arguments as to why I'd arranged things as they were. I just reorganized things so as to meet her newly expressed desires. Unfortunately this involves her being assigned a couple of tasks she really finds unpleasant, but when she pointed this out I responded that her sister and I had both had a shot at those particular chores prior to this, and clearly we couldn't manage them, so she'll just have to do it herself. I also listed several things as far as outdoor chores I handle that were not even mentioned in her list-of-things-we need-to-do-better just to show the time and energy put forth, and reminded her that I also decide the menu for dinner at home, do the shopping for the most part, and all the cooking. Oh, and by the way, even with the destruction wrought to my business by the storm, I still make about the same amount she does, so I think I'm pulling my weight. It's not like I'm sitting on my ass all day. So, we'll see how this goes. Either she'll decide her standards were too high and shut up about it, or I'll have an even cleaner house starting next week. Either way I win, and there was no fight.