Growing Pains

i wasn’t going to blog about this, but He mentioned how helpful my blogs are for Him, so i will. It’s not that i’m trying to hide anything, but it was intensely personal and, for me, painful like picking a scab.

It’s kind of ironic that a day after i wrote about our great conversation and contract we had an issue. And i was really frustrated about it. As i mentioned, Maximus has been traveling for work. We’d chatted during his trip back during His airport layovers, driving each other crazy about toys and scenes. i was working that night and He wasn’t due to be getting home til late after traveling all day, so while i hoped to hear from Him when he landed or got home, i wasn’t going to get upset if He just got home and crashed–i’d hear from him the next day.

By 8:30 the next morning i was a little concerned as He’s generally an early, early riser and i’d not heard from Him. i texted Him and He’d just gotten up. He had several teleconferences scheduled so we texted briefly and planned to Skype later. When we started talking, He apologized for not letting me know He’d arrived home, and i told Him it was ok–it was, and i told Him what i wrote about above on that topic. He talked about how tired he’d been, that He’d checked His phone for texts from me, and finding none, hadn’t texted me. Then after a bit He said, “Oh, I had a booty call last night!” “You, did?” i asked. “Yes, when I landed, Ms. W asked what I was doing and asked me to come over to her sister’s place, where she was. It’s literally 3.6 miles away from the airport! So we had some wine and talked and then we had sex, but I was so exhausted, it was probably way better for her than it was for me. Then I really needed to get some sleep, so I left and came home and was in bed by 10:30.”

Oh….i thought. And a million things started running though my head. What the hell? Hadn’t we just talked about this? Hadn’t He made a very clear point during our contract discussion about communication about texting or calling each other when we knew we were going to play with others or as soon afterward as possible when we had? And why did He let Ms. W know He had landed and not let me know? Obviously, being 3.6 miles from the airport He went directly there and not home and back, so that conversation was had at the airport. My heart was heavy. i thought, don’t overreact, think about this first. So we finished our conversation and i spent the rest of the day thinking about this, trying to be objective, going over our discussion again in my mind. He called me later and I’d gone to bed, just mentally spent. Fortunately He just wanted to tell me about a wonderful song He’d heard that night at an event that made Him think about His life and relationships with me and his adult kids. In fact, He started with “I just want you to listen to what I’m going to say,” and i was really glad for that, as i hadn’t sorted my feelings out yet and really didn’t want to talk.

In the morning, i’d had enough time to sort through my thoughts and really realized that i felt hurt and was confused. i felt it was really important for me to get my message out correctly so i wrote it in an email to Him, fearing my emotions would interfere with my ability to communicate my thoughts clearly. It is important to note that Ms. W has been a very special person in Maximus’ life. She is a dear friend and they have gone through some life-changing events together. They are intimate, have a sexual relationship, but Maximus has assured me throughout our little-r relationship as we’ve grown into a big-R Relationship, that their relationship is on the level of great friends who have sex and enjoy each other and intend to be friends for a long, long time, but are not on the higher level of intimacy and love as we are. It has been a process for me to understand their relationship and we’ve talked about it a lot, and i’ve come to understand it.

 To: Maximus

From: gabriella

Subject: Having a struggle

i’m having a struggle and i need to share it with you. i’m writing it because i need to get the words right. i’m struggling with reconciling in my mind your relationship with Ms. W due to some recent things.
While i had hoped to hear a quick note from you when you landed from your trip Wednesday night, we’d communicated a lot during the day and figured you’d be tired from a long travel day, and thought you might be pooped, head home, and crash. When we talked yesterday afternoon, i told you it was fine when it came up, but you then told me about your bootie call with Ms. W and it gave me some heartburn. i didn’t want to react about it immediately then, wanted to think about it before bringing it up. She obviously knew you’d landed, and i find that hurtful. i appreciate that you went home afterward, but we’d had a conversation the night before, brought up by you, about communicating these kind of things to each other as soon as possible. i didn’t hear about it until yesterday afternoon and that seems late to me. Given that we’d texted in the morning. i would have rather gotten a quick text that night that you were headed home after meeting Ms. W. i don’t care if it’s late. i don’t care if i don’t see it until morning.
i feel a bit disregarded in how this happened and i don’t want to carry that around, i’d rather tell you. i feel less important by not being the one you told you were home, that Ms. W got that information. And i’m confused by our conversation we’d had about communicating, perhaps i misunderstood it.
Please understand, i’m not jealous. This is not jealousy and i don’t know how to convey that stronger. Ms. W is very often the last person you see when you go on a trip and the first person you see when you return. i don’t have the same opportunity and i don’t get to see you as much. These things cause me to question the relationships and how we fit in them, and the strength of them. It interferes with my ability to distinguish differences between them.
i’m not saying that you shouldn’t see her. i’m communicating my struggles with this, it’s only fair that you know. i felt left out and less important. i’m sure it was not your intention.
i worry that i risk pushing you away by having this conversation, but it’s important that i share my feelings with you.
I love you.

Maximus Skyped me in the afternoon. He started out by apologizing for not communicating like He’d said He would, that He’d totally messed that up. And then He immediately moved on to talking about a new flogger He’d purchased and wanted to send me a picture of it. What!?!? i thought, that’s it, that’s what you got from my email? After He’d texted me the pic He asked, “Are you ok?” and i said, “No, i’m not.  i don’t think we talked about my email at all.” He started in on again apologizing for not letting me know He was home and of course Skype started acting up. “This isn’t working,” I said…meaning Skype. “What!?!? Wait, how it is not working?!? Note…poor choice of words when discussing relationship stuff and having technology problems! i told Him to call my phone because it was too distracting to deal with Skype issues when we really needed to talk.

“You’ve apologized about the communication issue, but we need to talk about Ms. W,” i started. “This is not about Ms. W,” he said, recalling a conversation we had several months ago where He thought an issue i had was about Ms. W and it wasn’t. “It is about Ms. W this time,” i assured Him. We went back an forth about that for a minute when i finally stopped him, “This absolutely is about Ms. W and let me tell you why.”

My problem with what happened is that it appeared that Ms. W got priority notification that He was at the airport and i didn’t hear anything. In fact, i didn’t hear from Him at all until i texted Him later the next morning. This made me question the nature of their relationship and the nature of our relationship. During the conversation, He noted that He hadn’t contacted her but that she contacted Him, having gotten all of his flight details, including flight numbers and times, three weeks ago from Him. “What!?! i don’t even have that! This is exactly what i’m talking about, why i feel i don’t understand where i stand!” i exclaimed, now crying. “Well she asked and i gave it to her,” he responded. “It has nothing to do with priority.” “I can fix this, you will be on my itinerary list and will get automatic copies of my itineraries by email. Only one other person gets those, my daughter.” “That’s not the point,” i quietly continue.

i realize he’s looking at the things, the lapse in notification, an itinerary, that i’m not communicating my issue. “I don’t feel important. When Ms. W gets your response first when you land, when she has all your flight information and i don’t, it confuses me in how my relationship with you is different than hers. i thought we had a committed relationship, maybe i misunderstood what that meant.” He responded, “Have I told Ms. W I loved her?” “I’M NOT HER, I CAN’T ANSWER WHAT CONVERSATIONS YOU’VE HAD WITH HER AND WHAT YOU’VE TOLD HER!” i was horrified at the question, it felt so unfair to be asked to put words in his mouth, relay conversations i’ve never been privy to. Hot tears streamed down my face. “I’ve never told her I loved her, only you, you’re the only one. You’re the only one who knows the deepest things about me. She doesn’t know about Nancy (a woman He’d met on a relationship site who, after a brief, highly sexual couple of weeks freaked out when she saw His large stash of condoms, assuming He was only seeing her), if she asked I’d tell her, but I don’t share everything with her like I do you. You’re the only one I share everything with, want to grow old with.” He continued about more details about their relationship and ours. “i just feel like i’m on dangerous ground asking about Ms. W,” i said. “What? No! To whom? Not with me! Why would you feel that way?” he inquired. “Because i don’t want to push you away by asking about her,” i replied. “That is your fear and it’s not gonna happen, baby, even if you want it to.” This all satisfied me…to a point.

There’s something that’s been eating at me the last week and i planned to bring it up when we were together next in two weeks. “i have to ask you something. Does Ms. W know that our relationship has changed?” Long pause. “I don’t know.” “Why not?” i asked. “I don’t understand why that matters.” He answered. “It matters hugely to me. i don’t think it’s fair to her and i don’t think it’s fair to me. i feel invisible,” i said. “Ms. W is a smart woman, she knows I’m spending a lot of time with you and I’m sure has figured it out.” i’m having trouble conveying what my issue is again. My fear is that she is operating under an assumption that she and He have or may have in the future when her divorce is final, a committed relationship.There are things that make me feel this way, including a past instruction from Maximus’ now ex-wife to make Ms. W fall in love with Him and she replied, “Don’t say that, we’re both married to other people and don’t love each other.”; several years of time together; feelings i’ve gotten from her when she and i have been together; and things she told me that differed from what she told Him. We had a lot of discussion about this. He’s still not sure how that is important to discuss with her, will think about how to do this, and i’m going to be patient and trust that i don’t have to worry about this, that He’s committed to me.

In my work to explain my feeling about this, i compared how people in my life know about Him and how it is important to me that they know. i explained, “The Seal and the Doctor, my mom and friends know i’m in a committed relationship with you. It’s important to me that the other people i play with know the distinction in our relationships.” He responded, “Yes, it’s time for you to meet my kids. We’ll do that next time you’re up. That’s a big step.” Oh no, that’s not what i meant!! “i’m not asking you for that, not asking you to introduce me to your kids, that’s not what this is about!” i’m frustrated. i don’t feel ready to meet them when i’m feeling so incredibly insecure at the moment. He continued “Swim Guy (His best friend) knows you…” “No He doesn’t,” i interrupted, “He thinks i’m some lesbian chick who came to watch you compete, He has no idea who i am!”

i try to have Him be in my shoes and see it from my perspective. “I’m so confused,” He continued. “We’re speaking two different languages. You are talking feelings and i need concrete. I’m asking 8 and you’re saying Blue and they don’t correlate. i can’t remember exactly what i said, but i was beyond frustrated. “Ok, here’s concrete for you then. i don’t feel important because no one knows i’m an important person in your life! And i feel i’m on dangerous ground here talking about Ms. W and risk pushing you away.” There is a pause for us both to breathe. “You’re not running away. You’re not pushing me away. You’re not pissing me off. I want you to talk to me about these things. These are all fixable.”

We talked some more about things we’d do, including communication, not being fearful of talking, eventually meeting people in each others’ lives, trusting our commitment, and not letting past baggage overly color our relationship. We’d talked for a long time and i was emotionally spent; He needed to complete an errand so we said our goodbyes. He called back 10 minutes later and the break had done us good. We were able to conclude the conversation to our mutual satisfactions. We’re waiting on meeting His kids, which is good. i feel somewhat overwhelmed at the moment with our relationship growth and want to really be comfortable and secure when i meet His family. i know we will be talking a lot when i’m up there next and that’s just not going to be the right time to introduce me.

Don’t misunderstand, i’m thrilled at our relationship and where its at. It’s just not anything i ever expected ever again in my life, has caught me unaware. Sometimes i have a hard time believing it’s true because it is so good and so unexpected. Growing pains of love.

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