Over the winter break, I was playing Jenga with my daughter and partners. It's a game where pieces are taken from the lower levels, then stacked on top. One pulls out pieces that aren't (hopefully!) structurally integral, adding them to the upper level, until the entire tower collapses, ending the game. Seeing the sway of the blocks, I considered the value of stability.
When I think of all the things I want in life, stability makes my top ten for sure! Some may find that odd in a poly context. After all, isn't it more likely for drama to be a part of things when you have more than one partner? Eh, I haven't found that to be the case. It's the individuals that comprise the whole that contribute to a stable system, or create one that is in a consistent state of uncomfortable flux.
Considering my current relationships, I enjoy the sense of dynamic growth, how each piece reinforces, rather than tears down, the others. When one section is struggling, having a strong whole means that the entire structure doesn't fall apart. There is room for "additions" to the structure, and I try to remain aware of how each new piece impacts the whole by taking care that additions enhance, rather than detract, from the overall stability of the relationships I value.
Any structure is only as solid as the materials that go into it, so partner selection and personal growth continue to be major strategies in building a robust, deeply-rooted network. Who I am, and who I choose to be with, are within my sphere of control. Selecting skills to cultivate, understanding my own participation in desirable/undesirable outcomes, and seeing partners for who they are, instead of who I would like them to be, are key to good material selection.
There have been some major remodeling projects in 2010. 2011 is focused on strong foundational elements, creating multiple points of support and reinforcement that will positively contribute to stability in the years to come. It's an exciting time, and I anticipate helping create an amazing "tower" that I share with my partners, one level firmly seated upon the next.