So

I am now, officially, seeing two people. It feels… normal. Surprisingly normal. In all honesty, I was in complete agony yesterday, because I felt like I could only possibly be neglecting one person or another in this situation, and I couldn’t see my way through to how this would be manageable. The logistics were terrifying, and more than that the idea that I would get involved with someone, one or more relationships would fail, and I’d have to go through the breakup with T all over again. I just don’t know that I have another one of those in me.

But once things were less theoretical, it was fine. I was able to just exist in the moment. I could be with A and just be with her, without either living in my own head or spending the whole time worrying that I was doing something to Carrie. Both of them have been brilliant through this, A accepting that I have certain things to give and others that are in reserve for someone else, Carrie giving me my space; I think I’ve put myself through more anguish than anyone else. I’m sure there’s some wish on everyone’s part that all of this could be done without scheduling conflicts, but to the extent that it’s possible everyone is aware of and accepting-of-to-happy-with the arrangements in place.

I’m sure there will be stumbling blocks. A asked if Carrie and I have anything she should be aware of, but of course as of yet any rules we have are still unconscious and haven’t been hashed out. And Carrie and I still don’t live together, so weekend time is to some extent “our time”, but weekends are also the only real time that I can see A. The logistics are a little difficult, but if logistics are the only problems we hit I think we’ll be fine.

The most striking thing about this, though, is how non-striking it is. Carrie and A have met and like each other. A and I have moved into territory where we both know where we stand, and I, at least, feel much less like I’m in that awkward territory that I’ve had so much trouble with in the past. I woke up today in a new relationship, and it feels good, and it feels right, and it feels normal.

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Well, nothing much has come of any of the previous contacts, which I mostly expected, but at least they were not unmitigated disasters. They were, at worst, fairly mitigated, and were in fact generally pleasant. It probably even helps a little, as I have something datelike in the works and I don’t seem to be completely panicking about it.

It helps that A has been doing exactly what I need her to do in the run-up to our actually meeting. She’s matched my forthrightness with her own, and we’ve been able to frankly say what’s on our minds and to discuss things directly. She’s maintained contact and hasn’t needed me to chase her down. She suggested a couple of times and places to meet once it became obvious that we’d both like to. I have not had to worry that I was pushing too hard, that I was not pushing hard enough, or that the last e-mail I sent included something that bothered her.

The upshot of all of this is that Carrie and I are both going to Northampton this weekend to grab dinner and see Amanda Palmer with the person in question. Where things will go after that I won’t speculate, but that’s an improvement; instead of assuming the worst, I’m simply not speculating.

I’m coming along.