I am experiencing the kind of exhaustion that sits right between giddy euphoria and full-blown panic attack. Hopefully I will be able to finish my post before the latter happens. Breathe. Just breathe. It was challenging, sitting through three lectures at the “Outside the Binary Day” that was organized by the LGBT+ community in my city today.
The first one was held by an acquaintance of mine. The room was small, it was crowded. My awareness zig-zagged from people next to me, the crackle of their clothing, the sound of people coughing, swallowing, fidgeting. From time to time, I heard what the lecturer was saying, while internally, I admonished myself: “don´t panic, don´t panic“.
It was difficult not to. My heart rate skyrocketed out of control from time to time, and I took several time-outs to visit the bathroom while people were speaking. Washed my hands. Splashed some cold water on my face. Looked at my reflection in the mirror, inhaled deeply, exhaled, went back again. This was what my entire experience at college was like.
Still, I held together pretty nicely. The lecturer informed us about the Free Pathh movement (links to my older post), which has been held simultaneously with the ridiculously expensive WPATH conference this year, as well as in Bologna. We spoke about empowerment versus victimization in transgender healthcare.
The second lecture I attended was about non-monogamy. It ended up being a very interesting discussion on how to manage labels and internal tensions in polyamorous relationships. It was less crowded, and the people were very active, listening and reflecting on each other. This was exactly what I´d been looking for.
We spoke about the transition from monogamy to polygamy and how to deal with it. I also asked how I could network with polygamous people in my city, and this is when they invited me to attend their meetings, which apparently do take place but could be found nowhere on the internet. I rejoiced! These seemed like people I could really connect to.
Despite it being a challenge to be a normal person and participate in conversations like these, I am glad I tried. There were about ten workshops that day including other gender and sexual topics, but I was just too tired. I had been looking for people I could talk to about relationships and polyamory, and found just that.