This occurred to me the other day talking with a poly woman.
I don’t identify particularly as polyamorous. If anything, I tend to cycle through periods of monogamy, celibacy (sometimes voluntary, sometimes not) , and experimentation. I have an unpredictable and unsteady romantic life, and I often complain about it.
But walking away from that conversation, something occurred to me:
I have a good romantic life. If I’m honest with myself, I have everything I want.
I never feel more comfortable and complete than I do when I‘m in a monogamous relationship. It feels like being part of something bigger than myself, and I relish the feeling of having a partner, facing the world standing side by side..
At the same time, Experimenting and dating around leaves me the most confident with myself. There‘s a feeling of being an explorer, discovering new parts of myself and others. Each new experience is a thrill I feel through my entire body, and at the end of it, I bring those new experiences home, strengthening the foundation of who I am while widening my horizons, giving myself a deeper well to draw from in the future.
Celibacy gives me the most serenity, clarity, and peace of mind. I feel more self-sufficient, even as I feel more connected with the rest of the world. Without being immersed in the immediacy of feelings--my own and other people’s--I suddenly have space. Confusion settles; fears fade; resentments drop away. I return to relationships renewed and refreshed.
I love celibacy. I love monogamy. I love dating around.
But I can’t do all those things at the same time. I have limited control over when they happen or how long they last for. All I can do is my best, and appreciate every moment that comes to me in whatever shape it takes.
I don’t think I’m magic or different or special. I think I’m the same as everyone else.
Which means others can have it all too. YOU can have it all.
In fact, probably, you already DO have it all. Intimacy, freedom, love…many of them are already there, whether you realize it or not. It doesn’t matter if you’re single or partnered, there are moments you have these things.
Alan Jackson was wrong. You can have it all.
There ARE however some caveats.
Number One: You can’t have it all the time…or all at the same time.
Number Two: You can’t always have it when and how you want it.
Number Three: How MUCH of ‘it’ you get is sometimes out of your control.
Number Four: It’s up to you to recognize what you have when its there.
Which leads to a natural reaction:
What good is Having it All if it's subject to all these terms and conditions? It defeats the whole point of Having it All in the first place.
Maybe not. That’s up to you to decide.
But it seems to be the way it works, and the truth stays the truth whether we want it to be true or not.
Truth is always freedom.
Accepting the truth about Having it All frees us to look at what we have when we have it and appreciate it. Each kiss, each moment of connection or peaceful solitude takes on that much more meaning. Wherever you are, whatever you want, it’s possible to stop, breathe in and say “what do I have right now?”
It frees us from the chains of our past. Regardless of how things ultimately worked out, we can look back at those moments and appreciate them. The courage to ask an intimidatingly-beautiful woman for her contact information, whether or not she gave it. The times before it all went bad with your boyfriend, those first texts, those moments of holding each other in the dark, those quiet promises.
Those moments may be gone now, but they meant something.
They will ALWAYS mean something.
It reassures us for our future. No matter what happens, we can and will have it all--everything life has to offer.
Looking to have it all? Why look for it?
It’s already here.
-May All Beings Be Sexy
Check out this link for information on how to get Dan's Dating for Shy Guys ebook.
I'm the guy women hook up with between the Jerk That Broke Her Heart and The One she ends up spending her life with. It's not the romantic life I chose or asked for, but I'm good at it, and I'm making the best of it. In the meantime, I'm offering up what I've learned.
I've written a book called Dating for Shy Guys, based on the course I developped of the same name. I have also written on dating and relationships for the Edmonton Journal and the Suicide Girls website.
Feel free to post any questions in the comments section.