Under the Influence

Issue #47

By Vivienne Arkell

He drew me in like a magnet; it didn’t take much time or persuasion before we became lovers. Even when apart, I floated in an altered state of consciousness. Complete strangers could see how passion had inspired warmth growing in my heart. What a strange substance it was: a serious emotion, like a drug I had never before experienced.

Only my mother crazily suggested I keep both men. She knew well the appeal of a home base (solid, grounding, earthly). But had I been drunk years before when I decided to turn just one man ‘into the center of gravity in my emotional universe’?* How did I come to believe that a single human could be my whole world for my entire life? Especially a man with such little pull on my heart. Yet now I was ready to turn it all over to someone new?

With the dust settled and single, I fell under the influence of Peter. He still feeds my brain with art and intellectual stimulation while our bodies lie together dormant. He always has time to share.

And of course I couldn’t live without my monthly fix of Aaron. Igniting my emotions, he takes me above and beyond legal limits. I am his vessel and he intoxicates me with seed.

Then came Mark. I locked onto his frequency like an addiction. Buoyant, again radiating happiness, he tickles my curiosity. When we’re together exploring, I’m young, vulnerable and adventurous.

As basic as eat-sleep-love or food-water-shelter, each relationship fulfills a different need in me. Having a secure home base was just not enough for me. Some people find ‘the one’, but it doesn’t mean we all have to live out all of our dreams with a single partner. And after learning to love myself, I realized my needs were quite varied and my best partners should be too.

Whose frequency am I feeling? No longer under the influence of only one, I’m responsible to fuel my own desires, feed relationships and keep my circle of friends and lovers falling under the influence year after year.

*Maria Mitchell and Maria Papova espouse on this in Brainpickings.

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