My Bigger House
This morning I got in the car, plugged my phone into the speakers and blasted Mama Cass singing “Make Your Own Kind of Music”. Mama Cass is one of my female vocal role models. Granted, she’s nowhere near Grace Slick, Janis or Heart, but she’s there. I heard “Make Your Own Kind of Music” for the first time on “Lost” when Desmond was introduced.
Shut up about spoilers. I’m not even going to talk about how that show ended. Bullshit. Listen, if you must watch it, watch the first couple of seasons and then stop. OK? I warned you.
Anyway, I love “Make Your Own Kind of Music” because it has that classic late 60’s pop sound that I love and it has a message I can get behind as your friendly neighborhood weirdo.
Make your own kind of music. Sing your own special song. Make your own kind of music, Even if nobody else sings along.
My dad always thought that my theme song should be Linda Ronstadt’s “Different Drum”. It has its moments, but “Make Your Own Kind of Music” applies to every part of my life thus far. Plus, it’s really fun to belt out in the car.
So, picture the scene of this morning if you will: I get in the car, I crank the volume up to 30 and as the opening piano and guitar comes in, I sway. Yes, I sway and put a stupid look on my face…like this stupid look:
Then I start singing at the top of my lungs (while paying careful attention to vocal support, of course. I don’t need Peter throwing things at my when I show up for overdubbing on Wednesday and say, “Oh, sorry…I can’t sing…Mama Cass.”). I would assume anyone looking in the car would have assumed I was taking my final ascent into Muppetdom. Perhaps they are right.
The other day, a coworker changed the picture he had on his desktop to this photo of him in Jamaica. He was smashed in between two huge drag queens. He asked everyone if they found it offensive. I walked over and said, “Eh, that just looks like what my life outside of the lab looks like.” Everyone laughed and probably believed that there was some truth to it, but I always wonder how much truth they think there is. I wander around at work with everyone thinking that I’m “original” and a little bit strange, but they never really know how strange.
When I talk about Shaun, Ginny, or Jessie, I call them simply my friends. This, of course, is not a false statement but by cutting it off there I am lying by omission. I can’t seem to bring myself to be open about it, mainly because I don’t really think it’s any of their business, and possibly because I don’t want to have to talk about it everyday. There are times when I have come very close to telling people everything because I think it’s a stupid burden to carry. But this is my job, not my family, not anything except where I contribute intelligence and skill in exchange for money and benefits. It is enough that they know that I have a husband. That they can understand and we don’t have to talk about it.
I suppose it might be silly to say on a blog devoted to subjects such as polyamory and atheism, but I get burned out on these topics often. I don’t talk about atheism much because I am rather uneducated about it. I know that I do not believe in gods or any kind of spirituality. This is the rational conclusion we must reach with the evidence at hand. I don’t really have a lot to say about it other than that most of the time. I talk a lot about polyamory because my relationships are pretty much the biggest thing in my life. Because I am living this way and building up experience points, I feel like I can speak intelligently about the subject. I like to present myself as a person living this way successfully and happily. I want to be inspiring and informative.
But it is still my life and I find that explaining why this works for us for the umpteenth time begins to take its toll. Sure, it’s easier when people are being accepting. For instance, the five of us were at a wedding the other day where after a while we mentioned the fact that we were polyamorous to the strangers we were sitting with and one of them said, “Yeah, that’s pretty obvious!” It was refreshing to not have to explain what it is. He didn’t even follow it up with any qualifiers like “Well, that’s cool if it works for you…but I could never do it” or anything. So yes, that’s easier. It’s harder when you find yourself still having to explain yourself to loved ones or to strangers and dealing with all the confusion and sometimes venom it causes. It is not fun to be the cultural liason for lifestyle all the time. It is exhausting and there’s only so many ways I can explain why jealousy sucks and how you shouldn’t think it’s a requisite of a committed relationship or any of the other things that people don’t want to understand because it might say something is imperfect in their views of relationships. Being adversarial is hard for me. It takes a lot of energy and resilience. I run out periodically. It takes such a toll on me that I have been waiting forever to write this particular post because how much can I wax poetic about poly before someone throws something at my face? But whatever. This is my life. It is amazing. Hate it if you want to, but it is amazing nonetheless.
Shaun and Ginny moved their office desks and computers to the house this past weekend and both of them consider home to be wherever their computers are…so my home is their home. This is something I have hoped would happen for a while and I am still in a general state of shock about it. Yesterday morning, Wes and I went to a diner and got home around 9:30am to find Shaun and Ginny both up and clicking away at their computers. I was surprised by it, and then realized that it was one of the best things I’ve gotten to see in my own house recently. It has been an interesting and sometimes tumultuous year. The fact that this is happening will seem like a dream for quite a while I think, but it’s a good dream that stays with me throughout the day.
The main concern people have expressed to Wes and me is “Is the house big enough for 5 adults???” Well, seemingly the answer is yes, especially if I gut the place for clutter. I have been driving myself batty for the last several weeks going through things and getting rid of everything except what I really want, which as it turns out is not nearly as much as I thought it was. The house is transforming into something rather impressive. Shaun inspires me to do these things, to be neater, to take care of the house more responsibly (mainly because if I don’t, he will first and I can’t let him take all the credit now can I?). Also, I’d like him to stick around for a while so I don’t want to push him out with piles of useless crap. I’ve been working ridiculously hard on these things and there’s more to do, and though it is stressful and exhausting for me, it is worth every amount of effort to make the house so much more comfortable for everyone.
My house has gotten bigger. I didn’t really think it was possible, but it is completely filled with amazing people almost all of the time. As I have mentioned often when I speak of having Jessie as part of our home, there have been moments of profound perfection in our house since she arrived. I thought of all the years before that I have been doing it so wrong. I used to want everyone to go away. I used to be terrified to share my space and not know when people were leaving because when there were people around I couldn’t be myself. But now I am the same person alone as I am with people, but even stranger, I am better with these people around. And now I feel like I actually have it all because I have all the people around me who make me so much better than I am on my own. And yes, I am still insecure and flawed and all those nasty things that I fight constantly, and I wonder what I did to deserve all of this…
And then I tell myself to shut the hell up and enjoy it, dagnabbit.
Soon, the epic house cleaning/organizing will be over and we will just have to maintain it and fall into a sublime sense of comfort and normalcy in an existence that many would deem bizarre and undesirable. I suppose it might be bizarre, but it doesn’t seem that way when I’m at home. It feels like this is exactly how my life should be and how lucky am I to be living exactly the life that I should be living. I suppose it seems undesirable to some, but I couldn’t ask for anything more than this. Despite the fact that none of us has decided to procreate as of yet, we have ourselves a delightful family, a family of our choosing and I hope that this is the beginning of a life time of awesomeness and calm.
I sat down with Wes this morning for a cup of decaf and then finished up some dishes before I left for work. Shaun came downstairs and I nearly passed out to see him out of bed before 8am but there he was. I kissed them both goodbye, grabbed my grown-up sippy cup full of water and went out to the car to drive to work and listen to some Mama Cass and think about how wonderful it is to be weird.
Then, when the song was over…I put on some Journey. Whatever, shut up. Everyone secretly likes at least one Journey song.