There’s a studio in this city that has a pair of my pajamas on top of its dresser and a toothbrush and thing of floss for me in the bathroom. How this happened in a matter of weeks, I’m uncertain. If I told you when the studio apartment’s occupant and I met, I’d spend a few minutes gasping about our timeline. So here’s this for now: things have been going fast, but it’s somehow felt comfortable and natural, and I’ve tried to refrain from second-guessing a good thing.
That doesn’t mean I don’t have some little walls up or brakes installed for protection—who am I without brakes or bricks and mortar? But I’ve felt mostly free of those things since first meeting D. Perhaps time with FKS and our unceremonious parting (ghosting, Les) and my dad’s health stuff shook up me enough that I was in a complete “live and let live” frame of mind when D and I met. I felt relaxed, comfortable in my skin and mind, and (as a result) playful. D was attractive, a great conversation partner, and I laughed and teased a lot from the onset.
Dating is really weird when a person stops to consider. (Two or more people engaging with each other in ways they don’t engage with others, including, in some cases, physical intimacy? How and why?) It’s tricky, too. As comfortable as D and I seem to be with one another, I’m not without my reservations about dating right now. What we’re doing feels like a relationship but that’s not what either of us were looking for.
But it’s sweet to hold someone’s hand and be myself with them, and sense, despite having recently met, that they are at ease with me too. I’ve been leaning in to this clover-filled patch of my life and thinking about how Mary Oliver would finally smile and approve of my abandon. My life isn’t a masterpiece, but it’s a lovely, beautiful mess that’s being lived. Perhaps that makes it a masterpiece.
“Moments” by Mary Oliver
There are moments that cry out to be fulfilled.
Like, telling someone you love them.
Or giving your money away, all of it.
Your heart is beating, isn’t it?
You’re not in chains, are you?
There is nothing more pathetic than caution
when headlong might save a life,
even, possibly, your own.
-From Oliver’s book of poems, Felicity