To Live Out In The Sunshine – Two Pairs of Happiness
It was somewhere in the late December 2013, that my landlord dropped in a visit to my small little apartment in Domlur. After the initial filler talks about traffic escalation, changing political scenario, his son’s UK dreams, and dripping taps in the bathroom, the forty-year-old man finally arrived at the purpose of his visit. The categorical landlord uncle was a mild and soft-spoken person, and I could understand what he was shuffling to say. This was expected. I was to vacate because I was seemingly ‘disturbing’ the other occupants. You see, last week, I had literally slapped our watchman for misbehaving with Rashmita. I wasn’t there in the apartment, and this idiotic person came up to my apartment, and started lecturing Rashmita – how a ‘decent’ girl should behave like, and told her that her parents would be very upset about her behaving like a woman of the market. I hit him for the last remark. Rashmita and I had this on and off relationship, but she used to drop in at my place when she felt low about life and needed some company. Did sex follow? A part of the consolation was reminding her the incredible woman she always was. And yes, that involved sleeping with her too.
Truth be told, she was one fabulous woman, and despite everything, I respect her even now. It’d be an honour to sleep with her again. But sometimes, you just know something is off in your relationship. And for a long time, I suspected that maybe that’s what made her come here again and again. To find an answer, to find a reason and find a closure. She wanted me to say, something was wrong with her, or myself. But it wasn’t. It never was. It is just this urge that pulls you to open the door and stand in the sun for a few minutes, even when it is cosy and nice inside. We broke off basically because it was time for me to live out in the sunshine.
So by the next week, as the year soon approached its end, I made some calls, selectively met a few friends, scurried through property times and more. On that note, let me be clear, many people are friends with me, but I don’t have too many friends. There are some I talk when it is needed. I do hope they realise it. Some I talk when I know I want to learn something stupid and listen to some juvenile crap. And while some, I call up to be myself. If say every friend is important, I’d be lying. Some are just there because they are in the same orbit as mine, but that’s about it. Nevertheless, I did call one of those juvenile friends, Saketh, who ironically had some help to offer. A flat was indeed there to be occupied in White Fields, but there was a catch. It was a three-bedroom setup, but the other two were being occupied by two women, who Saketh told me were in a relationship. He paused while he said that, expecting me to say ‘Hell, No.!’. But the first question that popped up in my mind was, wouldn’t I moving into a couple occupied setup, be a disturbance? A stranger with a couple was in itself a mixed equation. Nevertheless, I agreed to see the flat the coming Sunday.
To Diving Into The Sea Full Of Twirling Waters – Three Pairs Of Reactions
The initial month passed without any major incidents. Mostly owing to the fact that both, Mehr and Lucky went home for the Christmas holidays. Mehr worked in Accenture, and Lucky was the team lead at ADP. In the initial few days, I understood that they’d progressed into a relationship a year back, and were ‘super happy’ with what they had. Initially, both of them were working in Accenture, and only six months back, Lucky made the shift to ADP. As for me, well, it always was a rainy day in Bangalore for a journalist like myself to find an ideal platform. Ironically, this was also the same time when I met a spunky youngster at Brigade Road, who would in time turn out to be quite useful to me, by starting something called VoxSpace.
Over the past few weeks, I understood the differentiating traits that Mehr and Lucky possessed. They weren’t similar from the start, but the disparity that they showed as time progressed was still quite surprising. Mehr, as someone from UP, was swanky and vivacious when it came to enjoying life. Lucky, though an interesting person in herself, was a more composed individual who’d let hair down only when the situation demanded. It wasn’t that they were chalk and cheese, but they had their moments of differences. I guess the complementary nature of the existence, is what worked for either of them. And what was endearing was the lengths that they went in order to not make me feel like a third wheel. They would arrange for movies, and invite me out of my room every time, to join them. Initially, being the jerk I was/am, I’d refuse their invitation. But later on, I felt it’d be too rude, after being invited for the seventh time. The movie was “Gone Girl” the brainy thriller by David Fincher. It was only natural that we started talking about Rosamund Pike right after the movie. I and Mehr would have given everything to sleep with someone like her, and Lucky felt it was just too convenient for her to run away. The topics drifted into relationships, Rashmita figured prominently in them of course, not because she was the longest relationship I had, but purely because she was the latest.
It is that night I knew there was something I could share with these two women. I couldn’t figure out what it was, but I knew one thing, I could at least talk to either of them and never feel an air of judgement whisper across the room. As the night swooned into the wee hours, Mehr gave me a hug and went into her room. Lucky did the same but stayed for a moment longer. Her embrace prolonged the stage of normalcy in camaraderie. She whispered something that didn’t make sense to me at that point, but when I look back now, it does. It resoundingly does. She said – “Can I just be like this for a moment? Please? It is important for me? Just for a moment?”. The embrace spoke gently into my heart a simple small truth. “I know. I understand”.
Did I truly understand? If I didn’t why was the answer Yes? I didn’t know. I didn’t understand. But somewhere deep inside myself, I knew, I could. It was important for me too.
When You Remember Something, You Remember The Last Time You Remembered It
Threesome. If ever there was the ugliest way of describing what we had, then this was it. The simplest explanation for the most ignorant of minds. But radically the most misrepresented and unfair. In late April, we were in a relationship. A triad of people, who respected, adored, and felt alive with each other, both sexually and psychologically. It wasn’t as if it was bound to happen. If you think it was, then you might not be the reader for this story of mine. It never is. It should never be. But I will say this much, the physical closeness that we shared amongst ourselves, helped us forge a bond rather quickly. We were all polyamorous. This I discovered when I found myself loving these two wonderful women, equally and unapologetically. In the process, I stood to receive something spectacularly beautiful from either of them. Fulfillment would be the word I choose here, and yet that would only define just a small part of it. I received my sunlight from them. How do I remember being fascinated by them even now? Well, as they say, the mind never remembers the incident, but the heart knows the feeling. A warmth emanating from across the walls, in the night.
It was one very normal day when we decided that we should sleep together. It was just as simple as that. There weren’t many leadups, not so many affectionate moments, nothing. Just a small knock on my door, and Mehr standing outside. As I opened the door, she leaned in to kiss me. Her fingers reached into my hair and pulled me closer, as our skins breathed together. Half a moment later, we were getting undressed in her room, when Lucky walked in. I could only see her from the corner of my eye, casually placing back her bag in the cupboard, and unbuttoning her shirt, to neatly hang it in there. All the while I forgot to realise that my T-shirt was being rolled up, by the black painted fingernails of Mehr. It felt as if I’ve been doing this for ages. Perhaps, this was what I always wanted. Guiltily in my dreams. Mehr broke away momentarily and smiled at Lucky. I still don’t remember, why I followed it up by smiling at Lucky too. Nothing. Not a single fucking thing felt wrong in that moment. It was just one day, or perhaps one more day, that we decided to sleep together. It was just one day when I could see two souls collude as one, and a glowing togetherness which I became used to and greedy for, in time to come.
What We Shared And What We Are? How Do I Explain This?
We were. We are. That is the simplest meaningful explanation I could give to my pals. The ones who I trusted to understand. Most of them were upfront in judging the ‘setup’. Some were swayed away by the poetic liberation it offered (an artist friend of mine found it to be thrilling enough to be used as an inspiration for her art), and some others, well plainly attributed it to the sexual needs. My question to every one of them was simple – Why? Why should it mean anything else than a normal relationship? I was a man in my late twenties, in love with women who brightened me back. How was it any different. It wasn’t typical. It wasn’t normal. But that didn’t mean it was different or was supposed to be treated so. After a point, I let them be. People often fail to comprehend something they haven’t had the experience of. Their knowledge came from Pornographic materials, or Mills and Boon frills. But let me tell you, either of them will never give you the total picture. You see, it’s not that no writer can write about these things. I’m sure there are a million writers out there who could describe the feeling, and I’m surely not one of them. But the triad relationship, we had was just too personal to be understood. People often say, the more personal things are, the more general they tend to be. Well, there are some definitive exceptions to it.
How do you define the need to fall asleep on someone’s lap, and yet be the shoulder for another to find warmth in you? How do you explain the need to take care and yet be taken care of at the same time? As I laid bare in the middle of these two beautiful women, their skins contrasting each other, their breaths in sync, and bodies pressed to mine, How do I explain it to you that in those moments I was in bed with only a single woman?
True Love And The World Defining Committed Relationships
Today I shall ask you, my reader, on this fine Sunday, what exactly do you mean when you say, True Love? And what more do you mean when you say Committed relationship? What is being committed? Committed to a woman, and the idea of a woman she represents in that moment within the realms in your understanding? Isn’t that the closest you can get to defining the word? Could it also mean that you’ve imagined her at different points at the different bends of the time, and felt a similar fascination towards her at each of these moments? Perhaps that’s what is True Love. Yes? Well then my dear friend, isn’t that a harrowingly selfish definition of commitment and love? You need to see her as a fascination forever for you to be in true love with her. What if there is a deviance and she differs from your understanding of a fascinating woman. Would you still love her? Would you be committed to her? Perhaps not. This is a basal equation on which our triad relationship was built on, and thereby, when and if you ask me, how could I be in a committed relationship with these two women, I would then have to reply – You fucking don’t get it, do you?
We were committed to each other. Individually, Separately and as a Triad. Of course, there were problems in the paradise, but which relationship doesn’t. Yes, our problems were a bit unique, but nothing out of the place. The point that I want to ponder is that we never had to ‘make it work’. It was working as smoothly and as wonderfully as it is. We knew we were home. Whenever we came close to each 0ther, we could see that each of us was in a commitment in that moment, and was adoring the idea of each other in many moments to come.
Sometimes it would so happen, that Mehr would have to go home to UP, and it was just Lucky and I left alone by ourselves. We would love each other, make love to each other, but both of us were not completing the whole arch. Just the both of us weren’t fulfilling. Well, that I could say was one of the problems we faced. When two of us were left out. Initially Lucky had the idea that, our physical needs perhaps was the core reason of our depravity. The next time I left for Hyderabad, Mehr informed me that they were asking one of their friends to come over. This friend, Kathy, was as Mehr put it at that time, was into experimentation. It is an other matter that I had a huge argument with Mehr the next day for terming it as an experimentation, but the important thing is, Kathy couldn’t complete the circle.
It wasn’t about the partners, but the love we absorbed and breathed into each other. Was I mad about this incident? Not completely. I am a person who believes in clearing out all the wrinkles that could cause regrets in a relationship. It is after this, that we understood that we were committed to each other. Individually, separately and as a triad.
Time And Space – The Auteur Of Our Destinies
Two years. Our triad was two years old. We’d discovered each other in the truest form in these two years. Faced our demons together, sometimes pushing them into a closet, by the blankly overpowering them by numbers. We outnumbered our demons, three is to one. One thing that still baffled the most understanding of our friends, was the gender dynamics. Who was the man in this triad? Physically I was, but who was the differentiator? Much like in the case of same-sex relationships, where people always want to define the dominating and submissive sides, where did we fit in within these confines? When we spoke to them (truth be told Mehr and I, were the only ones who were willing to offer any explanation. Lucky, had given up on restrictive minds many epochs back). We tried explaining to them that, it didn’t matter. Or perhaps to the adamant minds, thinking and crafting up these notions, from their understanding of normal relationships and gender differentiation, we just told them that we were both. I was both the dominant person, and equally submissive.
It was a reactionary cause depending on the subtle needs of the situation. The union couldn’t afford straight cut lines of identity in intimacy. I was a straight man, in a bisexual relationship. Mehr and Lucky were bisexual and unfortunately, I hadn’t had the privilege of loving someone from my own sex, in the manner these two women loved each other. That didn’t mean I was lesser or more. These are just so confining terms. Suffice it to say, I celebrated our relationship with all the splendour my identity and my heart could confirm, and the women in my life celebrated it in their own wonderful ways. When people asked me who did I love more? Who was the “one” for me? I would say these two women in unity. Mehr for the way she defined the world around her, and Lucky for filling it with life and fervour. Were we open about our relationship? What do you think? Of course we were. We never shied away. Just because people wouldn’t get it, didn’t mean we stuck to the ‘what happens behind the closed doors’ scenario. We shared our souls equally. One soul divided by three. And yes, mathematically, there was a remainder somewhere which wasn’t exactly shared. What did we do with that? Someone actually asked me that. I couldn’t answer him at that point. I couldn’t account for the remainder. But now that I look back, perhaps that was the remainder which defined our love, and still remained with each other. That small vacuum that needs to be fulfilled, maybe someday in our lives. The timelessness of it became the beautiful definition of our triad.
In late 2015, Lucky moved to San Francisco for her project. Mehr and I were left behind in Bangalore. Initially, the project was to last 7 months, but by early 2016, Lucky was offered a full-time occupancy in Qualcomm, Virginia. It was a hard call to make for all of us. It was an opportunity that rarely came around to anyone. Mehr was adamant that she take the offer without thinking about anything else, but I was the weaker person. It was resoundingly clear that we missed her. Mehr and I were struggling to love each other beyond each other. I wanted Lucky to at least take a break of a month, come back and then decide. But even I knew, the choice wouldn’t be that simple then. And so in March, Lucky moved to Virginia and joined in Qualcomm. Mehr and I tried and tried.
We moved to Hyderabad. A change in the city might help us, is what we thought. But an internal lacking was always a difficult thing to handle. Often after sex, I’d see Mehr go out and smoke up, and just stare at the skies. She would eventually call me, place her head on my shoulder, intertwine her fingers with mine, and just stand there silently. She wasn’t guilty of anything. Neither was I. But we knew we couldn’t continue like this forever. We would often try to fill the apparent vacuum by planning trips, renting movies, attending events, making new friends.
But eventually in the night, as we laid naked wrapped into each other like we had a thousand times before, we could both sense that our backs were getting way too cold.
Overture Of Lives – The Undistributed Remainder Of One
By late 2016, we had decided to move apart. Mehr and I knew we would just remind ourselves of what we were and what could have been. It was time to walk out of that memory room for the both of us. She moved to Delhi in December 2016, and that is the last I saw of her. Lucky I do talk to her occasionally over skype. But there are pauses in between where we fall silent. Initially, Lucky used to urge me to go meet Mehr in Delhi, and perhaps even convince her to come back. She told me that she’d asked the same of Mehr too. But we both knew, or rather we all knew that we weren’t fascinated timelessly by each other anymore. Our absorption of each other was now time bound. We had lost to it.
I did try getting in touch with Mehr. We did talk regularly immediately after the breakup, but now it’s only restricted to the birthdays and festivals wishes. Lucky in that respect is the chirpier one, who still calls me whenever she wants to share some incident that happened in her workplace or sends me a jacket every Thanksgiving. Mehr loved us both way more than how much we loved her back. And perhaps that’s how we lost her to time. As for me, well, I met the quirky youngster I met at Brigade ages back, who had now surprisingly transformed into a half decent human being in 2016. And since then I’ve been working for VoxSpace fulltime.
Things change I suppose, and somethings are not meant to be. Being polyamorous is something of a reality for me. And although it is a hard truth to fulfil, that is who I am. Maybe someday I shall find a unity of women, who would celebrate life with me as I did with Mehr and Lucky. Maybe I won’t. But at this age, I know one thing for sure. Memories are a nice way of living your life. I’ve learnt to colour them with all the vibrancy, so much so that the canvas of my life, remains endearing to look at through my eyes forever. And as for Mehreen Faruqi Ahmed and Laksmi Ranjan, they shall be my women for eternity and more…