One of the hardest things about living this way for me is the comparisons I tend to make. I have made them since I was a child. I suppose it came naturally growing up as a twin. It is my nature to compare what I have to what someone else gets. This can be hardest sometimes when Joe goes out of town with another wife, depending on where I happen to be emotionally and spiritually. It’s much easier when I am stable in who I am, really, deep down. When I am not, negative thoughts of whether it is ‘fair’ (ha!). or whether or not I really deserve to go tend to creep in. I put a negative meaning on what it says about who I am, usually in a self loathing way.
Sometimes I have been caught up into the comparison of things that don’t really matter, I have just let them get in the way. Before I got hit with post-partum, I was in a period of my life that I felt I could handle anything! I had such stability and love in my relationship with Joe and with each of my sister-wives that I rarely questioned their motives, and whether or not they were looking out more for themselves or ‘the whole unit.’ If a trip was planned, even if it was last minute and someone else was going, I didn’t question or worry that I wouldn’t be getting my turn, whenever it worked out, etc.
But when post-partum struck, that all changed. I didn’t trust anyone, I felt like I couldn’t talk to anyone, no one understood me, no one really cared. I started keeping mental notes of who got what trip and how many dates each wife had. It was awful! I didn’t feel like that was who I was, but I couldn’t get off my pity pot! After a whole lot of anger and emotional pain, and unfortunately, a whole a lot of damage to my relationships, I was able to get the help I needed. Most of that help came from being willing to look at myself. Slowly my perspective began to shift. With a new perspective I felt even more well-rounded, like my eyes had been open to more of the beauty than I had seen before. Val and Alina or even Joe had not changed, just my filter of how I was viewing them had changed.
Sometimes, bad memories come back and try to get me down, but I remember how awful it was and remind myself I have a choice, and I never want to go back to that way of being. I find it funny when people accuse of us of not truly being happy. I choose where I am and in that choice I have been rewarded with a richness of love and relationships that far surpass, I would guess, the relationships of my accusers. My feelings come and go and are not the measure of reality in my relationships. However, the love and commitment we all share has never wavered.
It is only when I find who I am as a person, my own worth not tied to Joe’s outward affection, or some meaning of a trip that I am actually able to deal with such comparisons. When I am in that place I actually enjoy the positives of him leaving. It can be a good time to focus on connecting to my sister-wife or having girl time with other friends, or any number of activities. I can still do that when Joe is home, it’s just my way of making lemonade out of lemons. It’s sort of a perspective or context thing.
A few months ago, Joe and Val went out of town on a business/pleasure trip. Although I missed them, and the kids they took with them, I am doing great! I am enjoying my time and getting some things done that really were piling up on me, and Alina and I have really spent a lot of time together, working and playing, going out to dinner, shopping, crafting, going to a baby shower, and getting things done for our up coming family vacation! I really enjoy the bond we share and the opportunity to stay up late making goodies, listening to music and enjoying our kids. All together, we make a great team!