16.000km and Then

In the beginning of our eight month countdown my, at the time not yet, boyfriend and I created a “list for then”. It holds all the things which at some point we thought we would like to do together when we were geographically close to each other. We kept sending it back and forth with our letters, adding items here and there when we found something we wanted to do but couldn’t. “Then” was a magical moment somewhere in the future, shapeless still but fiercely anticipated when everything was going to be possible. We have been working towards it ever since. In the meantime we have become a couple and survived stressful times for both of us always with one goal ahead. Then.It’s not unusual in a long distance relationship to be working towards the moment when you finally get to be together again, but to us “then” is more. It’s the all deciding moment. I remember countless times when we worried about something, maybe even fought about something and ended on “We will figure it out then.” Because what is the use in trying to resolve problems of the future? We will see what happens then. We will work it out then. Whatever happens then, we will figure it out. Then wasn’t only a sparkling future moment of rainbows and happiness, it was a sponge for insecurities and unresolvable problems. We were always realistic about us together potentially not being what we had imagined it to be this whole time, but we also know each other well enough to know that we can, well, work through it, then. Knowing this is pretty relieving because “then” is right around the corner.

It’s been eight months during which we couldn’t wait for “then” to happen. Now I am excited more than ever and yet scared out of my mind. There has been nothing about our relationship that wasn’t real, but we still lived in a slightly different world than others. It would be safe to stay there, to keep going and never face the wonders and also the challenges of our relationship becoming corporeal. I have no idea what will happen when “then” turns to now. Not only in its time related sense of transformation but the transformation of who we are to each other and together. It’s absolutely crazy because, no matter how many countless times I have imagined it, I couldn’t say how it will go. I actually wouldn’t be surprised if my body hot wired and just stopped working. It could play out anywhere from a cotton candy cute rom-com scene to a sharknado type chatastrophe. In my mind it’s going to be somewhere in between those with maybe a dose of action – who knows, a Malaysian taxi driver might kidnap me, and my boyfriend will be chasing after him with his precious guitar as the only weapon…

My point here is that I need to share how unfathomably overwhelming this is. When I returned after my first major trip abroad to see my family again after a year, that whole year I knew it was going to be the happiest moment of my life till then. And it was! They were all there at the airport, I could hear them singing and calling for me as I grabbed my luggage at the belt, and I was as confidently excited as I had been the whole year. There was no pressure whatsoever on that moment, there is a lot of pressure on “then”. I wish there wasn’t, and that I could have it be whisked away by a breeze of bubbling happiness, which definitely makes up part of the mixture cooking inside me. Other parts are excitement, anxiety, caution, anticipation, stress, insecurity and dedication. If I wasn’t as scared as I was excited, there would probably be something very wrong with me. I can feel an outer calm containing and obscuring an increasing restlessness inside me. Finally I have reached the point at wich I’m tired of waiting. We’re almost at 8/8 now, and it’s time for “then”.


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