I’ve been the one who stayed and the one who went in my current relationship and I now see both have significant challenges and differences. Here is a little tid-bit of where my thoughts have gone on the idea and practice of a LDN (long distance relationship).
June 2014 — The Half that Stayed
What I have recently noticed is that people don’t ever see eye-to-eye when departing from one another. I am still doing all the same things I would normally do, but you aren’t here with me and there’s no chance I will run into you by accident. You on the other hand are in a new place or a maybe familiar place you’re learning to re-love. It’s hard to keep loving what’s left behind when there is so much ahead of you. I can’t be upset about that, people deserve to grow and change and do what they were meant to do. I should be so proud of everyone I know that has left and gone on — I will too one day I just hope I remember to reach out to those who are still a little behind me in their own journeys.
I love my house and work and friends and location for most part, but I also wish to be the one who isn’t so pained by another leaving. Some could call this an abandonment complex, but I think more people experience this than they’d like to admit. It’s much easier to move on when you’re doing new things than when you are sleeping where they slept with you and showering in the same shower you both had that wonderful morning filled with gentle kisses on your shoulders.
You were my normal and now you’re gone. The new normal must be put in place — I have to live my life as if it’s one huge adventure in a location I’ve always known. I need to learn more and challenge myself and be busier than I think I already am. I need to laugh and cry and breathe more fresh air. But when the phone rings I also need to recognize the beauty of that person reaching out to me — I hope they do as well. I don’t want to cramp the new normal on someone else’s adventure — I want to experience special little pieces of it.
February 2015: The Half that Went
Five months after taking off to Europe, I was wondering if we were doing this right; all the blogs said this would be hard and that we would have to make sure we communicated effecively to build trust, but it felt great. We were communicating better than ever, sending cute things whenever we could, sharing moments though pictures and our trust in one another was strong. We had done it, we were the couple that managed long distance better than anyone else we knew. But was it real or were we just living in a fantasy world, with an acutal lack of communication, calling our daily emoji swaps and phone calls here and there a relationship? What defines a romantic relationship over a friendship? Do we have to become just friends in order to survive being apart for so long? It makes sense to think so, knowing how much quality time and physical touch matter in a relationship, two things that don’t exist as much when separated by an ocean.
I can’t believe how difficult the past couple of weeks have been. I’m more confused than ever but that’s neither good nor bad just… confusing. I’m sure you’ve sensed it, and I apologize for that deeply, but I feel really disconnected from “us” lately. I don’t really want to tell you how my day is going because you aren’t here and you can’t understand. I don’t want to ask you about your day either because, frankly, I know what your day was like. I’ve been an idiot begging for more from you just to feel like we’re still romantic, even though I know your nature isn’t that way.
With only three weeks to go, it makes sense that I’m questioning all of this. I wonder what “we” will be like once we’re in the same time zone and can’t express our emotions though emoji stickers (even though I will miss these little endearing symbols) but rather will need to communicate with our body language. I am glad to not have to speak to you over crummy Internet connections when we’re either drunk or almost asleep, but I do wonder if we can do it. Can we learn to include one another when planning our futures and share a group of friends and get through the low-points we haven’t hit yet? Everyone talks about the exciting countdown to see one another again, but why does no one share the nerves that exist around the reuniting?
Probably just a case of the homecoming cold feet, I love you.