CK got home this evening and I am so relieved, happy and just settled feeling now that she's back. We got over to my house, grabbed up my things, she got to see the new bicycle and we came over to her flat for the evening. Dropped stuff off, went to the market, came back and made up some quick tempeh tacos. Sat on the bed, ate dinner with a beer then played Magic (I won after not having played for years & years with an "elven" deck of hers).
Just a slide back into "routine". I realized, as she was hugging me at the car in the airport garage, that some undercurrent of fear had really crept in. Some nagging sensation that she'd gone down to see her family and they'd have "talked sense" into her about this whole relationship thing. She set her things in the back and hugged me close; just huge relief whooshed through me.
A trickle of it has started inside, I went ahead and paid to park for the 10 minutes (tops) I was in the lot so I could meet her as she came through security. Her flight had been a little early, luckily I checked at the house AND my house is very close to the airport, so I just made it. Walking across the open area just as I saw her come out of the gates. She smiled when she saw me and gave me a quick hug & kiss.
It is the ease with which she displays affection for me that just leaves me silent and smiling sometimes. The first long-term girlfriend I had wouldn't show me affection in public to the extent of pulling away from me when I went to take her hand while walking together in downtown Portland. I set that aside, never being able to adequately explain to her why that hurt me so much and she never really allowed the space to put it to words.
There is just such intimate beauty in being able to lovingly touch someone in public. Not even to the extent of passionately kissing or touching. Holding hands, the way I put my head on CK's shoulder when I'm tired of standing, or the way she puts her hand on the back of my head and neck. They are not passionate, excessive displays in public but they are very intimate. They are precisely why I have started telling my Zen sangha about my relationship. Those intimate touches give it away and it is unfair of me to try and hide them, suppress them because they might be seen by someone who will judge.
What I find so interesting is how powerful they are when I'm made aware of how people can react. The rude Texan woman giving us a glare in line at the aquarium in Vancouver B.C. All that had happened was one of those sweet, simple intimacies of comfort and affection. Had we been a heterosexual couple of any age at all she would likely have not even noticed or maybe even smiled. Because we are two women sharing that level of intimacy, clearly "more than just friends" we got a glare.
I don't think about making those kinds of gestures. There's no time to get wrapped up in worrying that someone will condemn me for kissing CK lightly, or holding her hand when we walk together. We share that deep, intimate connection and love so why wouldn't I want to just have the simple pleasure of having that level of public touch. I don't even think twice about it. I suppose that's why it hurt so much years ago when MM pulled away from me -- although she loved me and would say so, she was always thinking about who might be watching, who might tell her parents (at the time they lived in Hawaii still), a client might see and not call back. She was never just caught up in loving me and wanting to hold my hand for the sheer pleasure of that connection.
That so much of American society thinks that way and worse is pretty infuriating. Why should it matter in any way at all when people want to express love and joy in the world. There is such a stinginess about Love. When Jessa was dying I really had a perspective shift on Love and gained this sense of the vastness of it just out there -- rather along the lines of how the late Douglas Adams described how immense the universe is* in The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy.
I am perplexed at people wanting to hold Love in, codify it, contain it despite it being so utterly beyond our full knowing.
* "Space is big. You just won't believe how vastly, hugely, mind-boggling big it is. I mean you may think it's a long way down the road to the chemist's, but that's just peanuts to space."
If you replace "space" above with "love" up there and it pretty much sums it up.
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