16.000km and 365 days

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“When people ask me whether you’re my boyfriend, I can’t say yes, because that would be a lie, but when I say no, it doesn’t feel like I’m telling the truth either.” – me, May 5th 2016

 

Are anniversaries a big deal to you? They’re a big deal to me right now. Yesterday marked Tod’s and my one year anniversary – that’s crazy! Obviously, when we got together this is where I wanted to go, but this whole thing – our relationship and the events of the past year – I never expected any of this to happen. I’m amazed by us, and I’m proud of us, and celebrating this day not “in person” but in the same country nonetheless is a big deal to me. Partly because we never know what’s coming next for us or how we are going to get to wherever we want to get in our relationship. Also because this year has been eventful, and it’s been hard.

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For the first three months in our relationship I was so stressed with uni that I got Tonsillitis immediately after the start of the semester and it really put a strain on our relationship (the stress, not the Tonsillitis). Then I surprised Tod in Australia, and we spent a month in his home, and another month in Malaysia which was amazing – when I think about it now it seems extremely far away and like we were completely different people, which we were! At least to each other. Tod lived with me in my home for almost three months and got to know my family and my life, and living with him is so good, albeit a little fattening, haha. Since January Tod has been working as an au pair some 5,5 hours from where I live. That’s been hard, harder maybe than being the whole 16.000km apart. Our communication completely changed, became less frequent and less satisfying over a poor phone connection. Trust me, the irony was not lost on me. Traveling to see each other really cut into both of our monthly income and quite honestly, I was very unhappy for a few months, feeling disconnected. We’ve become more aware of how different we were with each other in this new kind of long distance relationship, and we were able to take a step back, voice our concerns and talk about the issue and start fixing it. So we are more mindful now and putting in more of an effort again, which feels really good.

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There have been so many hardships we faced, big ones but also really small ones, that I’m even more amazed we are here. And I’m proud of us. Because we communicate, we talk things through, we fight sometimes but we make up after, we travel the distance for two short days, we invest in each other, and we believe in each other and us. Every time things get hard and I could give up, I take a step back and look ahead, and I know I want him there. I think the reason we have been able to do this is having a shared goal – we want the same thing; we are working together to get there. Otherwise, if we didn’t know the way nor the goal, then I don’t know if we would be able to do this. Because in the worst case scenario we’re facing four more years of long distance relationship, in the best case only one and a half more.

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If this is reads clumsily to you, I’m sorry. Writing has been hard for me, but I wanted to write about this. If this seems cheesy to you, I’m not sorry – I wanted to write about this because I needed to use this opportunity, the one year marker, to share how much I love this man, how firmly I believe in him. It’s not pink fluffy love and gushing. It’s a stability inside me, an unshaken knowledge, that I don’t want him gone from my life. That we’ve fought our battles and that there are many to come, but at the rate we are going, we can make it through. We are good together. And I’m thankful for that, because he’s truly something.

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Note: All of our experiences are personal of course, and they don’t have to apply to anyone else. But I do like to share the good things and the hard things, because maybe there is someone reading this who is in a long distance relationship, who can relate to this. Feel inspired by it. And maybe, if things are hard, and you feel like you can’t keep going, this might help or it might just reinforce you to know, that you’re not the only one. And if you’re ldr is going smoothly and you love every minute of it, that’s great! I admire it and would find it inspiring to know your story, too. So if you have something to share – an experience, an anecdote, a tip – I’m all ears. 🙂

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