“Clara asked if you’d be up to meet with her,” Daniel said one day. Daniel was my partner, and Clara was his wife.
Ummm. What? I had a strong reaction to that idea. I felt a mix of emotions ranging from surprise to fear to relief. I’ve heard a lot about Clara, not only from Daniel, and had a reason to be nervous. I heard of her fiery temper and that she was beautiful.
“Well. Okay. What could go wrong?” I said. I believed in the idea of kitchen table polyamory and craved to have a connection with Clara.
Daniel gave me her number, and we arranged a date.
We agreed to meet at a coffee shop on a sunny Tuesday afternoon. When I got there, the shop owner was turning over the “Open” sign to the other side. The one that said “Closed.”
“Bummer!” I said and walked over to the table outside where Clara was seated.
She was gorgeous. Tall blonde with dark brown eyes and a sexy smile. She was wearing tight jeans, a white blouse, and a leather jacket. No wonder Daniel fell in love with her, I thought. “Hi,” she said. “Here, have some of my chai latte.”
I started crying. WTF? What just happened? Why was I crying? Clara offered me a latte. She wasn’t supposed to be nice.
These and a million other thoughts raced through my head.
“Awww, come here,” she said and hugged me. We hugged, I cried, I apologized for crying, and she cried too.
Then I pulled myself together, and we went for a walk.
“Why were you crying?” she asked.
“I’m not sure,” I said, “I think that it was relief that poured out of me. The relief that you don’t hate me and that maybe we can be friends?”
We talked about everything and anything. Clara told me about her pain and how she got over it. She told me about her boyfriend. We talked about kids.
She said, “Please don’t leave my Daniel; you are way too nice.” We cried some more.
I was surprised about how different Clara was from the image of her in my head based on Daniel’s stories. She actually seemed like a very nice logical person. Clara told me about the book she was writing and asked if I could help her market it. Of course, I agreed.
We kept on walking and talking. Clara told me about the magical therapist that helped her reprogram her thinking about life and relationships and gave me his number.
She told me about her challenges and the fear of Daniel giving up on her. I reassured her. I knew Daniel — he didn’t give up on people in his life. Especially family.
After we finally said our goodbyes and I got home, I saw a story on Clara’s Instagram page. It was about meeting me. In her story, she said she might end up having a better relationship with me than with Daniel. I thought it was sweet.
It sounds like a fairy tale, doesn’t it? It was for a bit. Clara and I met up for coffee a few more times, and I even did some career coaching for her. She shared things with me, I shared things with her, and we had what felt like a great connection.
I felt comfortable enough with Clara that we celebrated kids’ birthdays together.
Looking back at my interactions with Clara, despite feeling comfortable, I remember feeling like I had to walk on eggshells around her, too — just like Daniel did. One wrong step and the mine would blow up. I later compared how I felt around her to being next to a wild animal — one wrong move, and she’d eat me alive. For the time being, it seemed normal, though.
If only I knew what was to come…
This is an excerpt from my new book — “My Journey To Polyamory And Back: How I Fell In Love With Myself By Experimenting With Non-monogamy, Healing Ceremonies, and Psychedelics”. If you liked it, read it for free with Kindle Unlimited or buy a paperback copy on Amazon.