Managing expectations when reality is skewed and morphing into the past

While my wife sleeps soundly in the hotel room, our zero-G comfort taking the stress off well-worn joints, I look down at Earth rotating below us.

How we got here is important but not nearly as interesting as our story in progress.

Wasn’t long ago that she told me the big D word would dominate our conversation if I made Bai my dance partner.

I groomed and complimented her, negotiating the acquisition of a signed/autographed sketch of Snoopy by Charles Schultz just for her, which gave us a buffer zone of conspicuous consumption love in a modern relationship (modern as in millions of years in the making, a bower bird lining its nest, a trilobite wooing its mate, a…well, you get the picture, I imagine).

Then, last night, as she felt insecure, after pushing me out of our nest to perform ritualistic gyrations with other members of the opposite sex (or anyone, I’m sure), watching the inventiveness and fun I found with dancing partners, some with whom I’ve danced often in the last few months and some for the first time, her demeanor shifted.

Adding to her uncertainty, she was tired and sore from hours on and off the dance floor and decided to retire to our hotel chamber, leaving the simulated gravity of the spherical ballroom, her last sight of me making more new discoveries of myself in the company of Guin.

I danced only one more time with my friend out of time and outside of it before chasing after my lifemate, running into Bai, the Frenchman and the core group of Westies (West Coast Swing dance instructors/judges) where Bai introduced me as one of her students she’s teaching along with my wife.

After convincing my wife to return to the ballroom, the first person we encountered in the space station elevator was none other than Beccara, a Westie I had complimented earlier in the evening in front of my wife.

“So you’re Bai’s new student?”

Her friendly tone of voice was interpreted twofold by my wife: “So, you’re the guy who’s replacing Bai’s French lover and dance partner?” and that I was going around encouraging people to see Bai and me as a couple to others, ignoring my wife whenever possible.

Neither, of course, is true, but perception is reality.

Here in the second decade of the 21st century, I have important goals to promote, including dance competitions in near-Earth orbit, still decades away from setting up dance competitions on Mars.

How much should my personal relationships play into my passion for extraplanetary [a]vocations?

Time does not tell…it shows!

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