and along came poly…
I was introduced to the concept of polyamory, the idea that you could have responsible, adult relationships with more than one person at a time, in theory online. It appealed to me on some level, but I couldn’t actually comprehend anyone doing it. It was more like a nebulous idea, an ideal for love.
I saw it in actual action after moving to California.
I met people living it as a lifestyle. I met families founded on the concept.
It was an intriguing idea, to take pleasure in a partner’s happiness, even if that partner is happy having another partner. It spoke to a part of me that knew I would never be comfortable being someone’s one and only love. I am such a solitary creature by nature that the thought of sharing my life with someone, every minute of every day and night, is a terrifying concept.
Done right, polyamory is not an excuse to sleep around, but a way to love without condition, without boundaries. Finding polyamory when I did was an amazing experience, as I was discovering that love need not be bound by gender and with the idea of poly, it no longer needed to be defined by a single relationship.
My life had changed so very much in the course of a decade.
I was just north of thirty, and everything was brand new. I had a job making a ridiculous sum of money and a great apartment, a new path spiritually, a new understanding of myself…what could possibly go wrong?
Well, it begins with a bursting of the whole job market bubble. The tech world in Silicon Valley was imploding, and my job was among the first on the chopping block. I lost my job making ridiculous money. It was the start of a depressive cycle. Not that I knew it at the time. I’d never really had a depression problem.
Then 9/11 hit and I had a friend try to commit suicide, all in about 3 days.
I was supposed to go to Hawaii at the end of October, the trip all paid for long before the layoff, and I had figured I would find a job before then…but the job market was dead. There was nothing out there.
So there I was, less than a hundred dollars in my pocket, on a plane for Hawaii and thinking I had lost my ever loving mind.