At the same time my exhaustion and depression are never far away. I feel my life is like traveling on narrow ledges between pits, and I can never go fast because I might slip. And most of the time I'm okay, if a little wobbly sometimes, but all it takes is the merest bump and boom, I'm over the edge and in the pit. Being nourished means that the pits are a little shallower and I can get out of them a bit faster, but the more often I have to recover the more exhausted I get, and the more exhausted I am the deeper the pits grow as well as the harder they are to deal with at all. I just want the ledges to widen, I want to be able to re-balance when I get bumped instead of falling. How long will this take? What do I need to do? more rest, more self-care, yes. How much of this is chemical? Am I hoping in vain for ledges to widen when they could only do so with medical help?
My relationship with Topaz is barely 2 and a half months old, and it's already where I was with Kylei after 9 months and Hannah after our first visit and where none of my other relationships have gone (including my 8-year marriage). We have a significant amount of minor but very emotional conflict, which I think we handle pretty well, and I'm amazed to see such rapid increase of skill. And yet some of the baby-new steps were just skipped -- we haven't actually negotiated our relationship. That's so strange and we've been intending to do it but we're so in harmony so much of the time that I actually forget about it (which has never happened to me before). And I know it is a wise thing to do and we have intended to do it but just haven't yet.
And Topaz is new to poly and I am new to this feeling of not really wanting to spend time with anyone else, and actively wanting to spend all my time with one person. For a while I was wondering if I had turned monogamous -- and that idea didn't even scare me. I'm starting to feel desire to spend time with other people, but it's slow and small (about once a week I'd like to spend 2-3 hours in one-on-one time with someone other than Topaz). I think it will be a while yet before I have any desire to build with someone other than Topaz, and I don't know how intensely it will return.
The only reasons I want to negotiate a poly relationship rather than a monogamous one is 1) I don't like the idea of prescriptive exclusivity 2) I don't want to take romantic aspects out of my other connections. I think going forward my 'rules' are going to be very different. I used to spend a shitton of energy trying to balance my relationships and make sure everyone felt equally loved and felt like they had a fair amount of my time. I don't EVER want to do that again. I want to follow desire. I want people in my life who understand that a 'fair' amount is an amount that is desired by both people. I want very clear statements of desire always. I do not want anyone to ever feel entitled to my time because that is how I end up wandering on narrow ledges between sharp slippery ditches; that is how I end up feeling completely unvalued and like nothing I do is ever good enough. That is how I end up spending every speck of energy I have and getting net-zero nourishment from my connections.
I want an ethics of desire. I want people to spend time with me only, ever, because they desire to spend time with ME, and I want clear communication about that. I want people to give to me their love and their energy and their bodies only, ever, because they desire to. And I want to be with people who desire to give as much as they want to get. I would rather be completely alone than have someone give to me out of obligation. I would rather push people away than watch myself give to them out of obligation.