Anniversary special: Going the distance

​Were we nuts to have gone long distance at a ‘difficult’ time in our relationship? Was the long distance just a ‘cop out’ of calling it quits without really calling it quits?

Neither Eli nor I were believers in long-distance relationships. We just couldn’t see how it would work. That is, until we found ourselves in that situation, and what do you know! It was really, really, good for us.

We were staying at my parents’ when he booked his one-way ticket. The days leading up to his flight were torturous for me, but I kept my chin up, and tried to make the best of our ‘last days’ together. I dressed up everyday, and we would explore the city. I tried to be as happy as can be. I chose not to dwell on the impending separation. Yet, every day, I’ll hold him and cry: “Don’t go, please don’t go.” It was pathetic, yes, but I was being true to myself.

I’d always wonder what went on in his head, and how did he feel as he walked through those departure doors, towards his home, but away from his love. I’d like to think he thought as fondly of me as I did of him. Hopeful of our future together when the separation would end, and life begin truly as one.

While we talked everyday at every opportunity, when he left, I felt broken. For the first time in my life, I lost my appetite. And you know, I’m a girl who loves my food! Nothing gets between me and my food. I get really angry when I’m hungry. I get really upset when I can’t eat what I want. You get the picture. I lost a lot of weight in a very short period of time.

To be honest, I don’t remember what I did in the initial days. Not having enough food, and being heartbroken (haha an afterthought), does that to you I guess. Everything is cloudy. Life is a daze.

Thankfully, I was home with my parents. They gave me the space I needed, while being sensitive, loving and supportive. Fortunately, I was home with my friends. I’d ask them out to dinner ever so often. God bless them for always making the time for me. I was renewing the relationship with family and friends that I had lost when I moved to Canada to study. Life wasn’t too shabby.

But my heart ached.

Things between Eli and I were changing. We were communicating much more and better than before. We didn’t waste time watching movies or aimlessly measuring the road. We really communicated. On every thing. There was no chance of a hug, a kiss, or a hand hold. We had to put how we felt into words. We had to show our support for each other, and communicate ‘being there’ for each other in words. He had to communicate how he felt for me in words. Perhaps because my love language is words, this was really great for me. Despite the distance, I actually felt much closer to him than ever.

What really helped with the physical distance though, was knowing the next time I’d be in his arms again. I’d always have the next date booked, and it was wonderful that my sister was getting married that year because there was good reason to drop everything and jet out to Canada together.

In the year that we were apart, I believe we saw each other every two to three months. Yes, we clocked a lot of miles, and spent a lot of money on flights, but I wouldn’t have had it any other way.

Long distance was good for us at that point in time even though it seemed like the worst idea at the worst time possible.

The distance gave us the opportunity to really think about what we wanted. As individuals, and then as a couple. Did we really want to be together? Could we do without each other?

Well, of course we could. In our time apart, I got a job I loved, and lived a balanced life with comfortable disposable income. Life really was pretty dandy.

Yes, I can have a life without him. But, I chose to have a life with him, and I am happier for it. My heart sings. Every day, I choose to live a fulfilling well-rounded life with Eli – the man God had intended for me.

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