The night before Halloween 2011, I met someone who became very special to me. I never told you about Kali because… it didn’t seem appropriate. She works in the education field and was in an open marriage at the time, it seemed like a better idea to keep things to myself and cherish them privately. I wanted to lunge for her instantly, I wanted her to kiss me. But I kept my composure and sat on my hands. So appropriate, so proper. We didn’t kiss until the next date. The waiting was excruciating.
Kali and her wife had a lot of rules for their open marriage. In general, I think that if people want to have rules for their relationships, they should have them. Going into it, though, I couldn’t have predicted how much the rules were going to affect me. Some of them seemed arbitrary – can’t have an intimate date more frequently than once every three weeks. Social dates allowed in between. No extended phone calls, no gifts, no romance. Most serious of all: No love of secondary partners whatsoever. No love? How can there be no love? Or if there was, it mustn’t be spoken aloud.
By Thanksgiving I had jumped down the rabbit hole. We communicated so well, we could turn each other on in an instant through words alone. There must have been only a handful of days on which we didn’t get a chance to check in. Kali had traveled extensively through Portuguese speaking countries and so I spent hours listening to Portuguese language courses, practicing the differences between Spanish & Portuguese. I called her “a minha professora” – My professor (feminine). We had a sex date in November and one I think in December, and I wish I could remember all the details. No such luck – I didn’t write down the specifics in my paper journal, though I did find the places where I wrote about her. The first sex date was at my home. I remember crying, which I often do at first because the feelings are so overwhelming. I remember she had to leave because her beloved was requesting a ride home from another city. I didn’t want her to go. The second date was at her home while Kali’s beloved was out. I remember still feeling nervous, but that is the closest I’ve ever had to having someone’s whole hand in my cunt. No vibrator, nothin, just pure ecstasy from connecting with another human being.
By the middle of January 2012, I almost broke it off. I cared for her so much and couldn’t envision myself carrying on without saying it. Without being allowed to say it, allowed to express myself in the way that was healthiest for me.
Except Kali beat me to it. Things were going on in her primary relationship that required their full attention and I couldn’t be part of that anymore. She tends to be a bit of a workaholic. That combined with the work she was doing personally in her marriage meant that we didn’t speak much. Then… then I left the metropolitan area where I grew up and went to a place with almost no Internet connection or cell service. I had to focus on creating my new life. I traveled back a couple of times in the first six months or so, and tried to schedule a social date but it just wasn’t meant to be. We hardly spoke in 2013.
March is the time of year when I experience an annual rebirth. It’s not at New Year’s or near my birthday. I cannot explain why it happens in March, it just does. This year, on March 2, I was in my hometown and she called upon me to come see her. My professora, whom I thought I had lost, came back to me with her life fundamentally altered in a way that meant we may have a chance to truly reconnect in a meaningful way. Two years and 6 weeks after I had to let her go, here she was in front of me. Broken, but undergoing a deep healing, rising from her own ashes. I hesitated to reach for her hand, but when I did, I instantly felt the pulsing exchange of our electric currents, just as before.
For a brief couple of hours, we talked and wept and kissed and added little bits of kindling to our flame. Slowly, cautiously, until the wee hours, when I had to make a long drive back to where I was staying that night. Now, it’s been a week. A full week of continued communication, exchange of regrets and refreshing our memories to all the things that originally drew us to one another. In a few short days we will meet again in a city foreign to us both. For one night, we’ll be completely free to access the as yet untapped well of care and connection between us. Already, as always, the feeling saudade (sow-da-jee, Portuguese) is present with us. Represented by a word that has no direct relationship to any English word, saudade is the longing one feels about a person who was loved and lost, for relationships that were never meant to be, for a homeland to which one can never return. Saudade is the longing for things one can never have but which one greatly desires. It dominates my feelings for Kali.
Although we’ll have this time together, we do not live in the same city and our lives are necessarily separate. Our paths intersect unpredictably and at random. Though we may feel strongly for each other, a sustained association to one another is impractical. I have no idea what will happen to our story after this visit, but I do know that she will always hold a little piece of me.
She will always hold a little piece of me.
I name her Kali because, although that is a goddess of war & destruction, Kali is the goddess of empowerment. That is my greatest desire for her: empowerment in her relationships and in her life overall. I want to see her steering confidently toward her best relationships, her best self and her best life. Kali is also the goddess of time, specifically the passage of time which leads to the end of things. The awareness of the passage of time has been ever present with us as well. Before, we were always checking the time, setting alarms, carefully following the slow dance of the clock’s hands, counting the minutes until our visits were over – and afterward, counting the days until the next visit. Even now, we count the few days left before we will see one another again. The difference in this incarnation of our togetherness is that now we follow the rhythm of our own hearts, instead of someone else’s stopwatch. I hope now we can let the sound of the ticking clocks fade into the background. Irrelevant.
Flight is back in my life as well. I hardly know how to properly explain my feelings for Flight. Love, sorrow over lost time, and a relief I can feel with my entire body. I knew she loved me, but I had grieved for her and relinquished my claim to her exquisite company. Yet here she is, speaking to me with loving words as if no time has passed. We had little solitude together during my travels, but it was enough for me to feel safe, to trust again in her love.
I can hardly wait to be transformed by this annual trial by fire. Whereas I used to cringe and flinched when I saw the sparks begin to fly, now I am so eager to ignite and arise.