Life Vignettes of a Poly Fledgling


New member
I process through things by writing sometimes, and I find myself sometimes easier to analyze when writing in the third person. LOL. This is the story of how I met M, my current emotional secondary relationship, and the beginning of our complicated story. He was the first man I ever kissed after being 'open', and to date, this is the only time we have kissed. Only many hugs since. I have done my absolute best to respect the relationship he was in. The girlfriend referred to is moving out of state this week and that is the end of her and M's relationship. She has been aware of his and my close friendship, but I am not sure if he disclosed this particular event to her, nor have I questioned him about it. It has been a long, complicated road for us, and currently we are at 'extremely close friend' status, and I am giving him time to grieve the end of his relationship with his GF and be supportive as a friend... However, my feelings for him are most certainly love at this point.

Warning: adult themes, a tiny bit of language- PG-13! LOL


She did not understand what drew her to him. Was it that first dark-eyed sideways glance he cast in her direction as she was shadowing him for the first time? Was it the first time she felt his hand on her shoulder? Or was it the fact that he was a polarizing figure amongst the other doctors in the unit she worked in? She had always challenged herself to see the good in people and give them the benefit of the doubt. She looked at him no differently in that respect, but that first night she shadowed him, she saw a spark of interest in his eyes. The way he looked at her was different. At first she could not tell what it was… but soon enough, she realized it was attraction. He joked about her making him look old as they walked towards the ER to see a patient.

She did not look her years and frequently was mistaken for being in her mid-twenties rather than thirty-two. She had long wavy auburn hair, pale blue eyes streaked with a strange rusty hint, and nearly alabaster skin that blushed easily.

He was thirty- eight, and her diametric opposite…dark where she was light. He had deep tan skin and warm, sleepy brown eyes the hue of dark chocolate; his hair was black, but beginning to pepper with a distinguished grey, and he had a mischievous smile that made his features seem boyish at times rather than manly. He was broad shouldered, but neither tall nor short in stature, and looked down upon her more petite frame. He never wore a white coat, but rather just black or grey scrub pants, a t-shirt, and a pullover, so he seemed much more approachable than other doctors most of the time.

The first thing she appreciated about his intelligence was how thoroughly and succinctly he explained things. He was carefully instructional, but never harsh. He never made her feel stupid by making light of the vast precipice of educational difference between them, but made sure she understood the concept and taught her how to recount and teach others. “Teaching is the best way to learn and remember.” He would say often.

Soon there was a natural cadence to their nights of shadowing. They became a working partnership… a well-oiled machine. She knew his preferences for putting in Arterial lines and Central lines… how many flushes to use, what size of sterile gloves he used and that he usually used two pairs, and that he hated relying on an ultrasound for central line placement when he knew he could do it without. No matter the unit they were in, she knew how to assist him and anticipated his needs. He appreciated her diligence and seemed to rely on her memory for patient names, room numbers, and other small details.

On slow nights, they would sit in the doctor’s lounge and talk about family and interests. He asked about her life with her husband, and her young son whose medical issues had inspired her drastic career change. She learned he was a chemistry and math wiz and enjoyed electronica, running, and they nerded out together about movies and tv shows…and so much more. Soon he asked her if she wanted breakfast one morning… so they sat in the doctor’s cafeteria lounge and spent another hour together than usual, laughing together about random silliness… gossiping about people they worked with. Over the next couple of months it evolved into breakfast or drinks together after a shift or night of shadowing. They would flirt incessantly. He had a habit of loosening up after a drink or two and frequently the topic of conversation would drift to relationships or sex.

One morning, after a particularly rough shift, she talked him into coming out to drinks with the rest of the unit. He showed up almost an hour into drinks after finishing his notes. He bought her another drink, then bought four rounds of shots for everyone. The drunker she found herself, the more she leaned against him as he sat next to her at the table. He did not pull away. They shared a couple of shots… and they both stood off to the side, watching their goofy co-workers painfully popping and locking in embarrassing ways. She leaned back against his shoulder, and again, he didn’t move away. They stood, his chest pressed against her back for several minutes, and she swayed her hips to the music slightly, not quite to the point of daring to brush her hips back against him. She saw her co-workers taking note of how they were acting together, but she really did not care and figured most of them wouldn’t remember it anyway once they sobered up.

They ended up being two of the last five people left at the bar around 10 a.m. and while three people sat at another table together (another doctor and two nurses), she sat alone next to him at a table… just the two of them. The talk turned to relationship sob stories, with him first recounting his experience of being in a long distance relationship for years before being cheated on, then she told her own story of having an ex crash her wedding with the woman he had cheated on her with. They laughed. He began walking her out to her car, his arm around her shoulder, and realized she wasn’t safe to drive… and insisted she come back inside. A gallon pitcher and a half later of water, they sobered back up. He insisted she text him as soon as she got home. She did, and later in the day upon waking and realizing how strongly she had come on, she apologized to him. He insisted there was nothing wrong with what she’d done. After a couple days of embarrassment, she was over it and continued to shadow him.

She shared with her husband what had transpired and found him to be excited that she was experiencing a flirtatious attraction and receiving attention. He encouraged her to flirt even more and be open to anything that may happen.

Around the 4th of July that year, she shadowed him a couple nights in a row. They were fast becoming friends… or even something more. It was an incredibly slow work shift, and a warm, windy, beautiful night outside, so he suggested they take a break and get out of the hospital. She suggested the helopad. So they stood for several minutes at the edge, arms propped on the half wall surrounding the vacant parking lot as they overlooked the city square below… with music from a band playing outside somewhere wafting through the wind. They began to talk about his life in Chicago… his hopes for the future… his dreams of owning a place near downtown Chicago… and he pulled up his dream home ideas on his small phone screen. She leaned over his shoulder to look, and huddled up next to him, propping her chin on his arm as he showed her. He leaned even more towards her, not shying away in the least as they talked and ogled the different things they both liked about his dream designs. There was a moment that the warm wind blew, and a pleasant smell filled the air and she found herself shutting her eyes to take in all of the other sensations, the warmth of his shoulder, the breeze, the smell, the sound of his voice.

He stopped talking and looked over at her. She could feel his eyes. “It’s such a beautiful night,” she said softly. She opened her eyes and saw his gaze intent upon her. Slightly embarrassed, but enthralled with the electricity she felt humming between them, she didn’t look directly at him, but rather just past him. He turned his face towards her even more, just inches from hers, his lips parted, his gaze flitting down to her mouth, and she lost her nerve and looked away. It was clear to her at that moment exactly what had almost transpired between them.
Last edited:

Over the next month, he mentored her through a couple of books… teaching her arrhythmias to look for, and when she had questions one morning, he invited her to his apartment to answer since she had an errand to run nearby.

She was sitting on his small loveseat sofa and looked up a particular ekg strip to ask him a question. Rather than taking her phone from her, he sat down right next to her, put his arm around her, and leaned over her shoulder to look at the screen. She thought her heart might pound right out of her chest. He didn’t seem to notice how nervous she felt… and he didn’t move for a good five minutes or more. After he answered her questions, they had a drink and watched an episode of tv together that they both had discussed liking. The warmth and comfort of the white Russian dwindling in her glass made her even sleepier after the long shift they had worked and they both began to drift off while sitting next to each other on the sofa. She jerked awake a few minutes later as the episode was ending, realizing her head was on his shoulder and excused herself… but really what she would have loved to do was curl up and fall asleep in bed with him.

He had become comfort to her. He made her feel intelligent and beautiful. He treated her like an equal and a friend… even more so than the other nurses in her unit.

She had to move to days when her post baccalaureate program began, and within a couple of weeks, she realized just how much she missed him. She missed shadowing him… seeing him in her unit… texting him silly stuff throughout the nights they worked together. So she suggested that since the university she was taking a class at was just across the street from his apartment, they could meet up at the Starbucks next to her campus and catch up occasionally. She was surprised when he said yes. And even more so when he stayed with her for four hours and hung out, writing on his laptop, and even asked her to proofread something he had written. Starbucks turned into a weekly thing on the weeks he was off… and then evolved into lunches together, study sessions over at his apartment occasionally.

Near the end of her second month of school, they had one of those dates. He had invited her over to his place after lunch and an afternoon together at Panera. She studied while he watched tv and played on his computer. Her feelings for him had grown exponentially over those days spent together and she was slowly working up the courage to tell him how she felt. She had been pondering how to tell him all afternoon as she tried to focus on studying with the warmth of him sitting beside her on the same sofa.

He had expressed frustration at something, and in an effort to get him to relax… she reached over and started rubbing the back of his head and neck. He seemed slightly surprised and pulled away. She let go of him and took that as a rejection of sorts. They continued to watch the show together in silence, but when it was over, she told him again, as she had many times, how much she enjoyed being around him, hugged him a quick goodbye and left his apartment.

Sitting in her car, she chided herself for not opening up to him and telling him exactly how she felt. She sat for a couple of minutes, letting courage bubble up into her chest as she walked back up the stairs to his apartment and knocked on the door. She thought she might just be doing the craziest yet most courageous thing she’d ever done with respect to liking someone. He opened the door and asked if she was alright.

“Yes. But can I talk to you for a minute?” She asked.
“Of course..” he replied, and opened the door to let her back in. She moved past him into the living room and let him walk back into the room before she turned to face him.

“I feel like I need to say this. I really like you. A lot. I enjoy being around you and learning so much from you. I care about you probably more than you realize.”

The wheels behind his look of confusion seemed to slightly churn towards realization. “Red, I like you too, and I enjoy spending time with you. You’ve become a really good friend.”

She could tell he still wasn’t quite sure what she was referring to. “No… I mean I really like you. I am attracted to you. I couldn’t move forward without at least letting you know how I felt. To be completely honest, my husband and I are in an open relationship. We allow each to see other people. I know that’s a lot to take in… but have you ever…??”

His mouth dropped open slightly. “I’m really flattered… and honestly I hadn’t really thought about you and I… that way… and I’m kind of seeing someone.”
The room was so silent she could have heard a pin drop.

She gulped. “Oh.” She let her gaze drop from his and immediately started backing towards the door. “Then please forget I ever said anything. This doesn’t change our friendship…. Let’s just go back to the way things were and forget I ever said anything… please. I don’t want to lose our friendship.”

He walked towards her and half-smiled. “Red, come here.” She swallowed again and took a couple of steps towards him. He reached out and pulled her into a strong hug. Feeling incredibly awkward… as though it was some sort of pity hug… she tried to pull away, but he wouldn’t let go. “Is this what you needed?” He asked. “It’s going to be okay.”

“I know.” She replied. She felt tears welling up. His warmth felt so good. It was bittersweet. She craved this, but she knew it couldn’t happen. “I better go.“

Her self-esteem was crashing. She’d poured out her feelings stupidly and quite possibly ruined the most rewarding friendship she’d experienced in some time. She had opened the door and was walking out side as she said softly under her breath, really as a self-admonition. “I just need to realize that I’m not attractive to everyone. It’s not a big deal.”

She turned back to face him briefly enough that he apparently saw the pain in her eyes. “I’ll get over it.” She flashed a fake smile at him.

“Come here.” He said strongly, surprising her with a firm grasp on her arm and pulling her back inside his apartment.

Before she could comprehend what was happening, he shut the door behind them and bent down to meet her lips with a strong kiss. He showed no sign of letting up as he pushed her back against the wall of the entryway. A million thoughts barraged her mind. Everything she had wondered and fantasized about was suddenly happening. He was kissing her and it was just as glorious, if not more so than she had ever imagined. Their kisses were voracious, intense, and desperate as though they had been parched for one another for months. His hands grasped her backside, first on top of the short dress she was wearing, then beneath, over her bare hips and lacy panties, pulling her against him. She felt the expanse of his back beneath her palms, his chest pressed against her, the scruff of his five o’clock shadow against her cheeks and lips, rubbing them nearly raw. His kisses migrated to her ear and neck and between gasps of pleasure, she couldn’t help but question out loud. “I don’t want this for pity… please don’t tell me this is because you felt sorry for me.”

He pulled back slightly and looked into her eyes with hooded lids briefly, pushing and rubbing his hips against hers, letting her feel his excitement. “Does this feel like pity to you?”

“No.” She said with a breathless smirk before kissing him again.
“What about her?” She asked… the sting of realization that he wasn’t free to be with her blared into her mind.

He pulled back slightly and shook his head. “I should just break up with her. It isn’t even going to last. It’s been off and on, and she’s moving anyway next year.”

Feeling the intoxicating touch of his hands on her skin, the feel of his lips on hers, and a desperate welling of heat within her, she let it continue. His hands searched her body hungrily, under and over her dress. And even to more intimate places. He began pushing her into the living room and towards the bedroom when her phone began ringing. She ignored it at first.

“Stay.” He said against her lips as he pushed her again towards the living room. Her phone began ringing again, buzzing in her purse in the entryway. “Here. I’m sorry… I have to...”

She walked over and leaned down to her purse and pulled the phone out. It was a friend calling, but her conscience came into focus, slapping her back to reality. He took her hand and pulled her back into his arms, but she knew things could not happen this way.

“I have to go.” She said urgently after one more long suffocating, beautiful kiss.

“Stay. Please.” He half-whispered. “This can stay between us.”
“I really have to go…” She whispered back. “I’m sorry… I really want to stay… I do… but… I can’t.”

He sighed and smirked, his hand traveling down her hip to the hem of her dress, pulling it up past her hip.
“What are you doing?” She laughed.
He smirked. “I want to remember what they look like,” he whispered, running his hand over her peach lace trimmed underwear and backside which he gave a squeeze.

She sighed and laughed… and couldn’t resist giving him one more fleeting kiss before she pulled herself away from his arms gathered her purse and bookbag, and stepped out his front door, shutting the door behind.

“Holy Shit.” She whispered under her breath, feeling her heart beating like a drum. She knew things had just gotten exponentially complicated.
Normal Blog Post:

Sooo... It seems that my husband and my secondary (M), are finally going to be meeting in the next couple of weeks. Nervous but excited! My husband is extremely supportive of my friendship/relationship with M. M is going through a breakup with his GF as he helps her move out of state, but I want our deepening relationship to be free to move forward whenever he is ready.

One of the set in stone rules that my husband and I have is that potential partners must meet the spouse before being okay to be around our young son. M has very much expressed a desire to meet my husband and son at various times throughout our relationship and again expressed a desire to meet my son on Monday when he picked me up to take me to a Dr. Appt and run errands. So the time has really come!

My husband and I were lying in bed last night trying to think up 'unawkward' ways to meet up. We're thinking Super Bowl party somehow... M will be off, and I think I can switch shifts with someone at work even though I'm scheduled to work. We'll see!
Last edited:
I love your writing style, PolyRed! This is great.
Thanks MsJulles! :) I'm glad someone appreciates my silly ramblings. LOL.

Update: M works Superbowl Sunday, as do I... so that isn't going to happen. And sadly, Hubby and M meeting won't happen before then either. So I'll likely be spending a lot of time at home alone that first week in February. Looks like my hubby is going to St. Louis on business... and M works the whole week.

J might actually meet the hubby tomorrow if it works out. I'm supposed to go for an overnight with J tomorrow, but he might also have to work. He's working in the field this week, and on call. I told him today that it'll be a pleasant surprise if I get to see him tomorrow, but I'm not counting on it. LOL. Anyway, if by some miracle J doesn't have to work, he's going to come pick me up, which means he and hubby might get to meet. Which also means if J wants to come over that week that I'm alone with my son, he'll be able to! Of course... all of this is practically pie in the sky dreams anyway, so it's probably not going to happen.

Uggggghhh. And I really dislike being alone. I don't hardly sleep when hubby is gone on business. Not used to sleeping alone, and I have frequent bouts of insomnia anyway (like right now)... ha. Oh well.

Continuation of the writing is ahead. Going to try to go get some more sleep now if my mind will shut off, but will continue the story later today.

She sat in her car for a couple of minutes, feeling a mixture of confusion, elation, and unease about what had just happened. She had just crossed the line with the man she had considered a mentor, who had given her countless recommendations, advice, and was also her co-worker. And more or less had to reject him in order to leave. She hadn't wanted to leave at all. Even sitting there in her car, her lips having touched his mouth just moments earlier, she wondered what they would be doing at that moment if she had stayed. Shaking her head to clear the silly jumble of thoughts, she started her car and drove out of the apartment complex.

Once out on the main road, driving past her university, her thoughts turned to how awkward things were going to be at work. In the silence of her car, her phone began to buzz. It was him, calling. She cursed, took a deep breath, and answered.

"Heeyyyy..." He said with an awkward pause. "Listen... I'm sorry. That was really impulsive of me.... all of that. I kind of have a problem being impulsive sometimes and I just really shouldn't have done that."

"It's ok. Let's just go back to being friends. You're with her, and I respect that. Let's just try to forget this ever happened and avoid letting it happen again." She answered calmly. Even though her heart was breaking with every word.

"Okay. Alright. I should probably let you go... I'll... talk to you later." He answered uneasily, his voice quavering slightly.


She ended the call, and a flood of emotions came rushing in again. She didn't cry, but her whole body felt like she'd been stuffed in a dryer on spin cycle. Anger, confusion, lust, excitement, and heartbreak swirled in various configurations throughout her. She was home a few minutes later and got out of the car, silently likening her current state to the feeling of being in a hit and run. She walked through the door to her five year old yelling,"Mommy, mommy, mommy! You're home!" Time to put on a happy face.

An hour later, she was in her bedroom, folding laundry, trying to carry on with some semblance of normalcy when her phone buzzed with a text notification.

M: Just wanted to apologize again.

Red: It's okay. I should have stopped you when you said you were in a relationship. I didn't. But I really want to stay friends with you. I value our friendship and don't want to lose it.

M: No worries. And no apologies needed. Let's just be more mindful of where we meet.

Red: Lol. Okay... no more short skirts either if we meet outside of work. Jeans. Haha.

M: Lol. Probably a good idea.

Red: Ok. Ttyl. See you at work.

She didn't tell her husband what had happened until later that night, when they lay in bed, talking about the day. He was surprised that it had happened so abruptly and passionately, but still encouraged her not to close herself to the idea of a relationship down the line.

But M didn't text any more that week. She saw him briefly that weekend when he admitted a patient to her unit. She was in the room helping hook up the patient to the monitors and getting ready to move the patient from the stretcher to the bed with 4 other nurses when M appeared at the door. She felt a pang of unexplainable anger.

"Need any help?" He asked, nodding towards the rather large patient he was admitting. He was asking if they needed and extra help moving the patient to the bed. It was a strange question- as doctors rarely if ever offered help moving patients.

"Nope. I think we've got it. We're good." She said loudly over the beeping monitors and two other people carrying on a conversation. Her gaze locked with his, and she was pretty certain he felt the sting of her reply.

He admitted two more patients that night to her unit, and both times she ended up in the room, helping with the admission, passing mere inches from him, moving around him, and they didn't say a word to one another.

The awkwardness continued for a couple of weeks longer. Trying to move on from what had happened, she started a profile on OKCupid, and also opened herself up a little more when she was hit on in coffee shops. M was cordial, but never texted, and she refused to text him. She knew the awkwardness just had to wear off, and hoped that someday they would be comfortable again with each other.

When she was meeting a girlfriend at a local Starbucks about a week and a half after the incident with M, she was sitting outside in the warm sun one afternoon and a cute young man struck up a conversation with her. He invited her to his table, and since her friend still wasn't there, she took him up on the offer. He was an adorable 26 year old French-Iraqi engineer pursuing his second master's degree. He had several books spread out over the table, all various study guides for his PE certification. They had an interesting, intellectually stimulating conversation about prejudice and culture going when her friend showed up, looking at her questioningly, with a big grin. She excused herself politely from his table and walked towards her friend.

"He's cuuuuuuuuute!!!" She squealed as they walked in the door to order their lattes. Of course, her friend insisted that she extoll all of the details she had gleaned thus far about him.

"Girl, you need to go back out there and get a number. He's adorable!" She insisted.

Red rolled her eyes at her friend, but summoned courage and walked back out the door, plopping back down in the seat on the opposite side of the young man's table. "So... I really enjoyed talking to you, and I wondered if you wanted to exchange numbers in case you're interested in hanging out again?" She asked, hoping her nervousness wasn't evident in her voice.

He smiled broadly, his adorable dimples showing. "Absolutely. Yes. Let's definitely meet again. What do you like to do for fun?"

Red smirked. "I love movies, concerts, coffee shops, and I'm a foodie too, so you have your pick."

"Alright then, Madame... It's a date. Very soon." He said, taking her hand and kissing it rather gallantly.
(Normal Blog post)

M and I are having our first ever evening date tonight. In itself, not a big deal considering we spend half the day together when we do get together during the day, but I feel like it signifies a new stage of our relationship. We've been going out, spending time together since last July and haven't ever done this before. We have also had some very flirty, and some very deep conversations in the past week. There's a comfort forming, that no matter what we talk about, we will be able to deal with it because we've made it through so many different stages of our relationship and quite firmly determined that we want to be in each other's lives, and that we can work through emotional, awkward stages and come out of it even more appreciative of what we have.

He is getting over a long respiratory illness, so doubt much will be happening in the hanky panky department, but he wants to spend time with me regardless...and I'm not going to deny him that. ;) I shadowed him last week then worked with him this weekend.

I just can't express how happy I am right now with where things are. I am giddy like a teenager today... and kind of trying to temper myself a bit. Guess it's a bit of NRE, but it's odd to be having it after knowing M for as long as I have now, and for the fact that we have been interested in each other for the better part of a year. I've known him 15 months now, and since last April, we both have acknowledged this connection and grown into each other's lives. He's one of the first people I think of to tell something funny to. My day feels a little incomplete without hearing from him, because we text most days. And I won't forget the day he told me that I'm his closest friend and confidante. Besides his family, he says I know him better than anyone.

Besides my husband (greenapples918), I would say that is true of M for me. It's odd for me to acknowledge having such an emotionally intimate relationship with a man and it to be such a part of my life, yet we've never been completely physically intimate. I wonder how strange it will be when that happens. He knows me so well already. He knows my insecurities and my fears, and my past...perhaps even better now in comparison to when my husband and I got engaged. Kind of a scary thought.
Last night and today have been pretty freaking awful and gut-wrenching. M and I had a wonderful time out on our date... and ended up back at his apartment, talking and drinking til 3:30 a.m. I was too drunk to drive home, so I stayed the night. We had been touchy feely throughout the prior two hours of conversation before bed, and he started holding my hand in bed and encouraged me to cuddle with him. I did. We fell asleep for awhile, and next thing I know, he's spooning me and excited, and rubbing me all over. Clothes started coming off. He was more naked than I first actually... and things just progressed. He complained and laughed as he tried unsuccessfully to undo my bra. "Your bra sucks. This shouldn't be this difficult." We both laughed. The sex was really good... and he was quite dominant, which I loved. Our playing around lasted at least for a good hour and a half. There was plenty of time we could have stopped things, but neither of us did. We cuddled afterwards and then fell asleep. He was asleep when I left, so I just kissed his cheek lightly and left. I sent him one text, saying that I enjoyed it and hoped he did too, and said I hoped he managed to get some sleep and have a good day. Nothing super touchy feely. Told him I was going to sleep off my hangover. I sent him a text of something I thought he would find funny about 2:30 p.m. and still didn't hear anything. I did start to panic a little... and texted him again at 7 p.m. saying that I hoped he was doing okay and had gotten some rest. He texted me back about 8:30 saying that he was good. A couple hours later I texted back and told him what I'd done all day (as we sometimes do), and asked if some medication side effects he'd been having were better. He said yes... he was just awake and bored, and cleaning his apartment. I said I'd trade him. He could do my chemistry homework for me. He joked back and said no way. Then asked if we could talk on the phone.

I called him. He was surprised I let things happen, and wondered how drunk I'd been. I assured him I remembered everything. Told him I've never had a black out in my life and my mind doesn't really ever lose details even when I'm drunk. He started going into "Well, I really don't date people I work with." I played it off as being ok...said also that I understood he is getting over his ex, and that timing was totally wrong for a multitude of reasons. I also said that I didn't want to lose our friendship and had no problem moving forward with the understanding that our relationship would not go further than what we'd had before. He agreed that was a good goal and said he would talk to me soon.

I was pretty destroyed after that. I still haven't cried, and can't for some reason. I feel sick to my stomach. I sent him a text this morning asking if he wanted to just hang out tonight somewhere public... and suggested going to a movie just to remember and remind ourselves of why we're friends. And to get over awkwardness. I thought more, and sent him an even longer text. I laid out a lot of feelings and tried to reassure him that I wasn't going to push for anything he wasn't comfortable with, but laid out my feelings for him and the place I feel he has in my life as a friend. I told him that I am moving jobs in a couple of months (he's the first person I've told) and said that if he really felt things were too awkward to get over, he wouldn't have to see me in a couple of months time. The idea of that kills me. I told him that is not at all what I want to happen, but said it felt right to tell him.

And said I understand if he needs space to process all of this. And apologized for writing a novel in text form.

The next step is his. Hopefully it's not one that's going to completely shatter my heart.
I'm so sorry the outcome of your night together is unsatisfactory. I hope you'll be able to talk to him in person soon; I've definitely been the one sending texts and email into the ether and left speculating when I don't hear anything back. It's crazy-making. Take care of yourself, and good luck.
Things are better today, although I've felt like a raw nerve exposed most of the day today. Yesterday I suggested M and I hang out and do something fun- partly to get past any awkwardness we might have with each other after this week's happenings, partly to have the chance to talk more. I then sent him a longer text (which was probably overkill) and explained a number of things. I tried to put it all in perspective and said that timing wasn't smart, and that I did enjoy what happened, but didn't place great emotional importance on the act itself. (Which is true...I have always been able to separate love and sex quite easily... and the sex that we had wasn't particularly soul connecting, but rather lusty and a simple fulfillment of desires that I think both of us have had for some time.)

And first and foremost, I told him what he means to me as a friend. I reiterated why I love having him in my life. And I did actually use the L word... but used it in reference to my deeply close friendship with him.

Anyway... after I sent that long text, he sent me a text back a few hours later and said he was feeling fine with everything now and seemed positive towards me. He said he would love to hang out but actually had already made plans for the evening. I do believe him now- especially after his actions today.

However, yesterday I felt confused and my mind went a little nuts running with what 'fine with everything' meant. M can be evasive about sharing his emotions at times- (the joys of being attracted to introverted deep thinkers *sigh*), but now I pretty much think that he really means it. He's made peace with it in his own way, because today- this evening... he's been at work and initiated texting me today. I was fully prepared to go days without initiating contact with him and honestly never expected him to text me today. It feels as though he even accepted my expression of love for him in my life- and that he is comfortable and willing to accept that idea. His responses feel totally normal. He is joking with me as usual and I've been able to give it right back to him. Things feel ok. I feel less panicked as a result. I at least have the assurance that our friendship seems intact despite his emotional unavailability to have a deeper relationship with me right now.

The reality is that I do love M. While for me it can have a romantic element, I realize that is not what he can handle at this time, but he sees me as someone that he wants in his life despite all of this confusion, and that means a lot to me. He doesn't want to throw away what we have, despite how hard it has been to work through all of this at times.

This makes me see him more clearly though. It's made me realize that he can be emotionally avoidant, and that he's clearly f'd up from his relationship with his prior GF more than I first thought. I have been chiding myself a bit at not seeing the signs of this, but at the time I was so caught up in how much comfort he was depending on me for and how wonderful it felt to provide him that... his jaded attitude flew right over my head.

It does mean that we are going to have a serious talk in the next couple of weeks though. I can't afford to let myself get wrapped up in him and become blind to his inadequacies. And he needs to take ownership in what happened between us too. He has admitted to impulsivity in the past, and that has got to stop with regards to us. Each time it's happened, it has been temporarily detrimental to our relationship. It's not a healthy pattern, and it's something we need to address.

The single fact that I keep coming back to with regard to M is that overall, he has added much more to my life than he's taken from it. I love my relationship with him, despite its hardships. It's been enriching to my psyche and made me a more confident person in the long run. He urges me towards my goals, encourages me and affirms me, makes me laugh, shows me care when I'm hurting and down, and he makes me want to be better... to do better.
Two weeks later and M and I still haven't really had a deep talk. We both have been working, with very little time off, and this week he had a scheduled visit to see his parents, which live in another state and he visits frequently to take care of them.

We have seen each other at work a bunch, and talked, and texted, and things feel back to normal. We joke back and forth at work and I give him a hard time as usual. M came in the stockroom the other night and gave me a little side hug while we were talking. He even invited me in the room for a procedure I hadn't seen done before and instructed me on how it was done as he did it, with two other people present besides the patient.

We've made vague plans to hang out together the next time we both are off work and he is in town. Not totally sure when he gets back in town, but we both work Sunday and Monday. We've texted a bit this week while he's been gone, but I'm not pushing a hangout. We both have been sick. (I think he actually gave it to Bad thing is, our coughs/symptoms sound so similar that people are asking if I got it from him. I am nine days in and still coughing, but finally, maybe getting over it. As of last night, he says he's finally over it.

I just really hope we get some time together away from work together soon. He says he has a present to give me (a very late Christmas present since I got him a rather large one), so I told him he's going to help me use a gift certificate I have to a restaurant. He hasn't said no, and he didn't leave the gift in my locker at work like he could have if he wanted to avoid me. Fingers crossed. I can't wait to see him on Sunday. It's been 8 days since I've seen him. Longest we've gone in awhile without seeing each other.
So yeah... saw M at work. I was a little annoyed with him Sunday night and barely talked to him because he'd ignored my text the day before. I barely said two words to him and told him to just leave the present in my locker. I was all ready to move on from him. Kind of tired of this back and forth with him. But then I softened up on Monday when I saw him. He was in our unit for several hours doing notes and engaged me about an interesting patient he had in another unit that he thought I'd like to hear about. Then later he also had a patient come in our unit. I was sitting in the charting area talking to my charge nurse when he plopped down in the chair right beside me. We devolved into our usual pattern of flirting, but he was a little bold and did it in front of my charge nurse and another nurse. It was totally back to normal for us from that point on.

I texted him on the way home to let him know how the drive was and warn him of slick spots. (We had some bad weather and he lives near me and uses the same route home from the hospital), and we texted a bit once he got home.

I had forgotten my food in the fridge at the hospital (my homemade curry), so I had my hubs stop by the hospital on the way home from our date night so I could pick it up. Was not at all expecting to see M, but as soon as I walked in the door of my unit, he was walking towards me with a male nurse who is a friend of mine. Of course, my heart jumped into overdrive. The nurse friend commented how 'hot' I looked and I could have sworn I saw M blush a little and smirk. I didn't stop to talk to him and dodged in the break room to get my food. When I came back out, M was in the charting area and looked over and nodded at me as I headed out of the unit. I waved goodbye and headed out.

I was in the main lobby of the hospital waiting on hubs to swing back by to pick me up. (He had run to the pharmacy across the street to pick up some meds for a head cold he felt coming on.) Not even three minutes later, I saw M walking in my direction, looking at his cell phone, headed to ER. He didn't see me, but stopped only about ten feet away. I smirked and walked a little closer. "Boo!" He looked up and smirked. "What are you doing?"
"Picking up my curry. I didn't want it to go to waste." I replied, holding up the container. "And waiting on my ride."

"How long are you going to be here?" He asked with a sly smile.
"Probably another ten minutes."
"Okay. Wait right here. Don't move. I'll be right back."
"Okay." I agreed, laughing.

About 5 minutes later he walks towards me with a plain white wrapped package. A big grin on his face, and holds it, not giving it to me at first.

"Okay... this didn't turn out exactly the way I wanted it to and it's like super late, but Merry Christmas." He said bashfully, handing it over. He was about to turn away when I grabbed his arm. "Hang on." I commanded. I peeled the paper back to reveal what I suspected he'd gotten me. And I couldn't keep a giant grin off my face. He smiled at my reaction and hugged me. I hugged him again and planted a kiss on his cheek. I didn't care a bit who might see us. He'd bought me my own stethoscope... a Master Cardiology, and had it engraved with my name. :) He walked me to the door and continued to talk to me. I got him to agree to dinner sometime in March when he got back from scheduled trips. We texted some last night after I sent him a long thank you text, and then this morning he texted me again once he got home. He did agree that he played a role in what happened the last time we went out together, and then joked about it happening again, but suggested I bring a friend along when we go out in March.

Hubby seems to think that M is still in recovery mode from his last relationship, is a bit jaded, and is still in disbelief that it's really okay to have something with me. I think M doesn't quite realize that I'm asking for companionship and open to intimacy, but that I don't want anything more. I don't expect marriage or money. I value him as a man, for the joy and knowledge he's given me over the past couple of years of knowing him. Hub keeps encouraging me to give M time and be patient.

My closest girlfriend (who is also Indian, monogamous and quite traditional, although open-minded) has a different view, and thinks I should move on from M. She thinks he's too jaded, but she's never met him and doesn't quite understand the nature of our relationship. I am leaning towards Hubby's take for the moment, and deciding to keep my relationship with M out of my conversations with my girlfriend so there's no conflict. I am not ready to throw in the towel on nearly two years of friendship with M and around a year of being really close. My relationship with him is very confusing at times, for sure, but there's still many things he gives me that are precious to me.
I feel the need to hash out some feelings here too regarding an ex and how they relate to M. I dated X for a short two months last year while M and I were in the awkward barely talking stage, but the feelings for X were incredibly strong. We both fell head over heels. The attraction was instant, and we had amazing chemistry. He's intelligent and caring, and has the snarky wit that just does me in. On paper he is even more impressive. He's foreign, speaks 5 languages, is a petrochemicals engineer headed for management, and came to the US on a soccer(football) scholarship. X is single and 4 years younger than me, and longs for a family. It probably wasn't the greatest idea to date him, knowing that, but my relationship with hubby was at a very confusing state and I was questioning everything at that point, so the thought of leaving hubby for X did cross my mind. But X then realized that his company was requesting him to go to several training seminars relating to negotiations and he heard rumblings of being picked for starting a new branch of the company in the middle east. Those rumors turned out to be true, and I told him he couldn't turn down an amazing opportunity like that, but for him, that meant the end of our relationship. Feeling how strong his feelings were for me already, he didn't want to keep our relationship going knowing how rough the breakup would be when he leaves. So we broke up in December, shortly after M and I began talking more and spending time together again. It also became abundantly clear that a connection that strong when my marriage was going through rough times was not a good idea.

X and I have texted a few times over the past couple of months to check on each other, and last week he texted to let me know that this Friday is his move abroad. We met for lunch on Sunday before I had to work, and it was just like old times. I still have very very strong feelings for him. We had lunch and talked and caught up on each other's lives. I told him what had happened with M and I. X said he'd been out on a couple of dates, but no one compared to me. We ended up walking over to the mall and spent the afternoon shopping for luggage for his multi-stop flight. We held hands, kissed, hugged, and generally acted just like we were back together. It was very bittersweet, but good for me to know that it's possible to have that kind of unforced, organic connection with someone. Tomorrow I'm going to help X finish packing and probably go to dinner with him.

When I found out he's leaving Friday, I will admit that I cried. I don't like the idea that I'll never see X in the flesh again.

In reflecting upon this, it has made me see that my relationship with M is quite complicated, and although he fulfills some of my needs, it is not easy sometimes. Still not even sure it's healthy at times. My feelings for him feel rather unrequited, and at other times, I feel on top of the world. I've known him so long, and he knows me well. When we're together alone, it's comfortable and comforting. But in the real world, I'm not entirely sure it's going to work. It's like we work best in a vacuum, without outside influences. However, I still feel like I need to be patient with M. It's been a long time that we've known each other. I love him, and I feel I need to give him some chance of healing.
M and I... ugh. I just don't know what to do any more. It is so confusing I've pretty much just thrown my hands up. I love him, but this back and forth hurts. I know I mean something to him. He wouldn't be so willing to spend all that time with me... he wouldn't have ever kissed me, comforted me through tough times, given me advice, taught me, let me stay the night with him, had sex with me... and then given me an expensive, personal gift as he has. But just because I mean something to him doesn't mean he is ready to have a relationship with me that extends into the areas I want it to.

I have asked J's advice, and the advice of a couple of other guys... they all say that M's behavior points to him being completely enamored with me, but scared sh*tless to admit it. M and I have had a couple more sexy texting sessions since I last posted, but haven't spent any time together alone. He is home right now, visiting his parents, then headed to Miami to visit a buddy from med school. We haven't texted since he left on Sunday. I'm taking this time over the next two weeks to think and figure out if I even want to continue trying to make something happen with us right now. Apparently M has been making some errors and displaying a different side at work around people since we got physical last month. Emotionally, he seems on edge at times. Not necessarily with me, but with other people. I really want to sit down and talk to him, and find out what is shaking him up... if it's us, or something else, but haven't had the chance. I'm hoping these two weeks away give him a good break to think through things and come back in a better state.

One of my guy friends thinks I should sit down with M and completely lay out my feelings for him. Give him the opportunity to say what I think he's feeling for me, so that we may come to some sort of agreement and healthier, more open state, or simply to be able to move on if we just don't think more than friendship will ever be viable for us. This hurts so much to admit, but I almost feel like I might be done. I do love him... but can we ever overcome these obstacles? Will M ever be able to admit the depth of feelings he has for me?

In the midst of this, I am making a concerted move towards finding another job and have a position waiting for me as soon as the person vacates the spot in less than two months. If M and I do have a shot, it will be best to wait until after I've moved jobs and we no longer work together. We both have been getting a lot of heat at work for our friendship/relationship and there are all kinds of salacious rumors being thrown around about us. I love my job, but I'm sick of the drama.

I am also taking this time away from M to go out on a few other dates. I have had coffee twice with I, a sweet guy from Greece- but I think we will only ever be friends. I have my first date with H, a very sweet guy also with an advanced degree in the health field, tomorrow. There's also A, a really kind, sexy, compassionate guy who lives in the state north of me. We've been chatting and he might come visit soon. And J2, a funny, flirty, outgoing local guy who might see me next week sometime.

J and I are on a break right now. Schedules just haven't lined up lately, and frankly, all my energy has been focused on dealing and trying to figure out what to do with the M crisis.

I just hope things become more clear over the next couple of weeks. The last thing I want to do is to keep pursuing a lost cause with M with no real promise of a relationship and a confusing mash-up of feelings. I love that man in so very many ways, but he has got to come to terms and face his fears, his damage, and decide what he really wants so he can live a better, more truthful life for himself.
Well, it's been over a year and a half since I last posted. Lots of things have changed in my life and I've had some more forays into the poly world. I dated a lovely man (M2) for 9 months and grew a lot through that experience after M, and it taught me a lot about what I do and don't want in a relationship. I am currently in a relationship with A, a wonderful man I've been dating for 5 months. However, he knew I was going to Chicago (where M now lives) and gave me permission to 'do as you feel, just be safe'. I went with no intention of doing anything with M. We had sporadically talked off and on since a major argument/breakup in March 2015 and then M moved to Chicago in May 2015. We'd mostly kept it to talking around holidays/birthdays, and in November 2015 we started talking again a lot. I decided to look at grad schools in Chicago and made plans to visit in Feb. 2016, and M asked me to stay with him when I visited, but he ghosted me the end of January and I didn't hear anything from him until July, when he called me at 5 a.m. drunk, sad, lonely, and completely apologetic. From there, I became his sporadic drunk dial until I told him he needed help in August. He sobered up and we began talking regularly again. I was blatantly honest with him about his lifestyle and the fact he was in denial about his depression. He actually seemed to listen. We texted regularly and made plans to meet when I was in Chicago, but I refused to stay with him since I would be with my family.

I met him for breakfast. And it was instant chemistry as always.