If my LDR posts can help anybody out, I am already happy enough. Before I was in one, I used to read up on them as well. I’d just randomly Google ‘Long distance relationship’ and I’d usually end up on someone’s WordPress reading about their stories. So that’s sort of what I want to do for others as well. That’s what I want to do with my blog. Not every time, but every one in a while I’ll make a post about tips and tricks for a LDR. Now this post is not really a tip and trick kind of post, more so a post where I explain some of the things I’ve realized along the way. I’m not there yet, but it might help someone else out. Maybe someone who is not in a LDR will read this and go: alright, doesn’t sound that bad.
I used to be someone who said: “I will never do a long distance relationship. I can’t do it. I cannot be apart from my boyfriend for so long, I don’t have the money for it, nor do I have the will power for it all. If you want to go through it, be my guest. But I can never do it.”
Ahem… Here we are, like four years later and I’m in one myself. I realized: Yes, I can do a long distance relationship. I don’t make tons of money but I am still able to make it work with what I do have. It just takes more time. And will power? Boy, I have enough will power for the both of us if he didn’t have it.
So let me share some things I’ve realized along the way, up until this point. Some things might only be things I realized and maybe someone else will read this and go: Nuh-uh, not for me. Some things might be very obvious things to some. But may be something new to others. In any way, here it goes.
#1; You are GLUED to your phone. Your phone will be your best friend, it will be with you from the moment you wake, to the moment you pass out in your bed. Or wherever you pass out, I don’t judge 😉
This may seem obvious but sometimes I just think about that for a moment and go: Damn, I cannot leave my phone alone for longer than 40 minutes. I always check: is he up, has he read it yet, when was he last online, is he busy, did he say something. It’s always on me. Your phone is portable so that’s most likely the only thing you have that represents the communication with your partner. It’s the ONLY thing you have, that you CAN have with you at all times to be able to talk to them.
#2; Either one of you is always even a little sleep deprived.
This one doesn’t count for everyone because you may be in a LDR but still live in the same timezone. However for TY and myself, there’s a 6-7 hour difference. And anybody who has a bigger time difference than.. let’s say three hours, will get me on this one. Either you, your partner or even the both of you, will always be sleep deprived. Either you stay up for them, or they stay up for you. Or both. Anyway, sleep is not that important to you when you’re in a LDR.
#3; I know I’ve said this before but I’ll say it again: in a long distance relationship you are always, every day, confronted with your feelings and emotions. I honestly never thought it would be such a big deal. I always thought it would just all happen and my emotions and feelings wouldn’t really matter all that much. Oh, was I wrong for thinking that. I don’t think I’ve ever cried this much ‘infront’ of someone I cared about. I don’t think I’ve ever thought so much about my feelings, as I do now. It can really suck but it can also be beautiful. Because once you both finally show that vulnerable side of yourselves to the other, you just feel so… understood. You feel like you’re both in it for the same reasons and you’re both struggling with it sometimes. You feel whole.
#4; Sometimes you can’t help but feel like you live in this bubble. What I mean by that is that most people around you do not and sometimes will not ever, understand you. They can’t understand your situation, they won’t understand it.. and it always kind of makes you feel distant from everyone else. Because when they talk about their husbands/boyfriends coming home and doing this and that, you can’t talk with them. But they can’t do the same with you. If you’re talking to them about something your partner has done for you, while being so far away from you, they just never really totally get it. And it’s not something that makes me feel terribly sad or anything, just every now and again.. you kind of feel like you’re alone in this bubble with your partner.
#5; You have to explain the same thing to everyone, over and over and over and..-
I think I have explained my situation to my coworkers and people around me a thousand times now. I have explained everything there is to (currently) know about me, him, us together, my feelings, his feelings, our feelings, our relationship and our plans for the future. However, every single damn time, the same people have the same questions for me. And I wonder: do you just not listen to what I’m saying, or do you just don’t get it? And part of me doesn’t mind because I get to sometimes educate people about it since there is always that ‘stigma’ about meeting people online and then dating them long distance. However, another part of me is getting kind of sick and tired of the repetitiveness that I face every day with people around me. This also ties in slightly with the previous point mentioned.
#6; People are always going to judge the hell out of you.
Case and point the stigma I was talking about. Just… always the judging from everyone. I was even a bit dissapointed when I was judged by a family member(not my parents, FYI) because I honestly thought out of everyone, they wouldn’t do such a thing.
#7; Prepare yourselves before you get yourself into a LDR because you’re always going to have to fight for what you stand for/what you want.
With judgemental people and the constant struggle of explaining everything over and over again, comes the energy you’ll need to fight for it all. People are going to try and drag you down, talk you out of it all, and make you feel like what you’re doing is weird and not right. It is right, I’m just not following the ‘social norm’. The social norm we all have to follow is: school, work, a house, find a loving husband/wife in your own country that’s the same race as you and then marry, have babies and die. What if I don’t want to follow that goddamn(sorry) norm you are following? What if I do it all the same, just different from you? I always have to tell them I’ll not back down. I’ll keep going until I’ve reached the end. I have to always tell people that: Yeah I do not know what the future brings but I sure as hell won’t give up and never figure that out.
It’s just a never ending struggle. However, it’s the best cause I’ve ever faught for 🙂
These may not all apply to everyone who reads this. But it might help someone out. I know for a fact that if I read these kind of things before I got into a LDR, it would help me. It would let me know beforehand: okay, this will not be easy, it will be tough as hell but I’m going all in for it.
Before, I’m not saying now, but before when I randomly stumbled upon a blog of someone who was in a LDR, I never saw the ‘bad’ side of it. Couples were always putting it on a pedestal and saying ‘Oh it’s great, the best thing ever to happen to me.’ and now I get that part of course! But where was the bad? Why did they leave that out. I always think: you need to be prepared for everything, also the worst. Now, I did find a lot of bloggers in a LDR that say that: no, it’s not always easy and it’s awful at times to go through it without your partner right next to you.
But back then, 2010/2011, I didn’t find that on here. So here is my point of view. And take it or leave it 🙂 Judge it all you want but I love my LDR. Flaws and all.
So with the vacation time approaching and me being one day away from actually pinning down the date of TY’s arrival in my country, I thought I’d update y’all on everything. Since I’ve been gone for a bit, but believe me: I haven’t been sitting still!
So a week ago, TY and I had another major talk over videocall. I didn’t post about it because the whole thing kept me sleep deprived for another two days and I had the biggest headache ever. Even though it was all resolved after that huge call we had, it stuck with me for two days. I was happy the headache’s were finally gone, and also: work, of course. It kept me all very busy. Not only that, but for the past months I’ve been stressing out over the “Date”. The date on which he’ll arrive. Because my work kept pushing me because they wanted a date before the end of February so they can plan the schedules ahead of time for the summer. Which I totally get, however, I only hoped they kind of kept in mind that my situation isn’t that easy. Since TY had to wait until his semester started before he could ACTUALLY give me a proper date. Today, he’s finishing up with the final touches on that and tomorrow I’ll pin down(hopefully) the actual date at work.
So for quite a while I was worried about two major things: the vacation and the ‘future'(I’ll get to that point later). The vacation is coming up first so I thought I’d discuss this with him first.
Because, as much as TY loves me and I love him… In some ways, he’s too….. ‘lohas’.
So what TY explained to me about being ‘lohas’ is that it’s sort of a way of life. Don’t worry about too much, just live your life and things will happen when they happen. Yada-Yada. Anyhow, he’s very zen. Like 9 out of 10 times. I, however am always thinking about everything. I want to plan things way ahead of time so I can make sure it’s all set and I don’t have to worry about it, last minute. Most of the time, that clashes with TY’s zen attitude. Or his Lohas attitude. I love him for it, but sometimes it annoys me. I accept him for who he is entirely, though and I will never judge him for it. It’s just something that clashes every now and again. When it came down to the vacation he just didn’t seem to get how important it is for us over here(my family, my work and me) to know an actual date. I’ve been explaining why for ages to him but it never really got through to him. He was always so laid back about it. Two weeks ago during a work meeting though, my boss told me yet again she needed an actual date from all of us, including yours truly, before the 16th of February. So on Monday last week, I thought it was time for me to get real serious with TY, since we still didn’t know ANYTHING. I had to push him, and push him hard to start realizing that this was it. Either he lets me know a date before the 16th or he can’t come visit me because I won’t have a vacation. Or I will have one, but during the time he doesn’t have one. We finally came to a conclusion yesterday that it will be July. The beginning of July until the last week of July, if that’s possible for me at work of course. Though I don’t really think that it will be, since my boss even told me personally that if the vacation is in July, I can even take four weeks vacation leave if I wanted to. So as I said before, I will (hopefully) pin down that date tomorrow at work.
So last week on Monday after that talk we had, we hung up, he went to take a shower and do laundry and I sat down feeling pretty good about it all. My mother wanted to have a talk with me. Oh geez, here we go. Now, my mother mentioned her concerns about us and our future. Because TY is now 24, by the time he’ll finish his University education he’ll be 26. We still didn’t have it figured out who was going to move where. I had told him of course I wasn’t going to leave my mother behind in my country, but he still had high hopes about me taking my stepfather and mother there to live with us in Taiwan. I however, still didn’t say ‘no’. To his requests of me moving there because we never really had the talk about: Okay, now it’s serious, who’s going to move where? Of course my mom’s concerns were mine as well. I totally got what she was saying but I told her why I hadn’t been initiating the conversation yet. TY had to go to Mandatory millitary service which took away 1 year of our planning etc. That’s not his fault of course, but we do miss 1 year. It’s sort of like, in that one year you can’t really plan anything, other than a vacation for when he’s out. So that’s the first point. The second one is that during his time in there I never really wanted to discuss serious topics with him. By now I kind of know what makes TY tick and what doesn’t. I know that if he’s in that situation(millitary) he doesn’t really feel good about anything. He hates it there, he’s always complaining about it(I totally get it) and all in all he likes to talk about ‘good’ subjects to help lift his spirit. I can totally agree with that, if I were in his place, I wouldn’t like to talk about serious deep topics. Because the whole situation already sucks, I’m already not having a good time and those kind of topics may make me worry about things I don’t want to think of right now.
However, we needed to talk. Again. So I told him about my mothers concerns and he called me. By that time it was already midnight for him and I just told him what my concerns were as well. I asked him: what are we going to do? Where are we going to live? What’s the plan for the future. Because in a LDR you have to move quicker than ‘regular’ couples. Meaning, that (airquotes) “regular” couples spend a few years constantly around each other and then decide: hey let’s move in together. Let’s buy a home together.
With a LDR, you have to do that quicker. Doesn’t mean you have to execute that plan within the next year or so but you have to start PLANNING. Planning, planning, planning. So you can start working towards that goal in the end. So that you won’t be standing there at the end of the day shrugging your shoulders and going: Well, now what?
He understood and said it’s actually a very good question. Fast forward about an hour later and we kind of hit a wall. He kept saying he didn’t know what to plan for yet since he doesn’t have a job or degree yet, to which I kept asking what that had to do with us planning for later. We kept repeating ourselves and eventually I felt desperate and said: Ok, let’s just leave at this for now and you go sleep and think about it, we’ll pick this up later. After you’re fully rested.
However he said he wasn’t able to sleep at that moment because of the topic we had discussed. So he ended up being on a call with me for two hours, which resulted in him only being able to sleep for an hour and a half. But once again, that’s for later.
We went on with the conversation, in the meantime I had smoked about 10 cigarettes and already had dinner and we still didn’t get anywhere. We just kept repeating ourselves and once again, we had hit the same wall as before. I started to feel emotional. Because I felt like: If we are not going to be able to get across this wall, that’s going to be a HUGE problem. Because (I didn’t say it) it might resort in us not being able to make it happen and work it out. Resulting in… you know. I went up to my room and started sobbing. I told him we had to figure this out. Because it’s our future. I asked him if he really wanted this. Not just me, not just the fun, but the future. I am willing to make it happen and go all the way, but at this point I started to doubt his commitment. Which was a terrible feeling. When I started crying and told him I will not move to Taiwan and leave my mother behind, I think the realisation finally kicked in for him.
Up until this point in time I have always been the one out of us two who has been realistic about the future. I always knew one of us was going to have to sacrifice something and I always thought it would be me. But now I knew in the back of my mind it had to be him and I didn’t know if he was willing to do so. Him, as much as I love all of him, has been more of a dreamer. He likes to talk about earning big money, me moving to Taiwan, bringing my family there with us and living a good and happy life. Which I’m all for, of course. Dreaming is good, I love to dream, hoping is good, wishing is good.. but you have to be realistic as well. I’m not saying it’s not possible, what he wants.. But I did tell him that we cannot wait for my parents to say: Hmmm, maybe in 10 years we’ll want to leave everything we have behind and move to Taiwan for Naomi. We can’t be depending on them for OUR future. Because that’s what he made it seem like, that’s what he was waiting for. We had to have a plan B. That plan B involved us making an actual plan for ourselves. To start somewhere, and I did tell him: it would be great if in the end my parents decide that they want to join us, however we need our own plan. And this is it. This is where we have to decide what’s next. I realize that maybe I sound a bit egotistical when I say I can’t leave my mother behind. What’s different about his situation? However he did say that his family is bigger than mine(true), more financially stable than mine(also true) and that he still has his sister to take care of his parents if it all were to go down south. I have a brother but I know that he won’t take care of her if it went bad.
So after two hours of talking, and crying and stating our fears and emotions(yes both of us did), we finally got over that damned wall. He’s still going to finish his education, in the meantime I’ll start planning for a house here in the future, I’ll work on my job even more than I already did and try to earn more money, get a better contract. Which I already started with, but never really knew for sure if it would be for our future or just mine alone…
After his education it’s basically time for him to find a job, preferably find a job in Taiwan that has their company in both our countries, so he could move to my country, while having a job here that’s tied to his country. But even still, just any job really so he can start moving to The Netherlands. In the end he did say that I was the first person he ever really cared so much for, that he would never ask me to leave behind my mother for him. And also, that this conversation was badly needed and that it did light a fire underneath his ass. He now had more motivation than ever before to make it all work for us. Not just him, but now me too. So we ended up the conversation with a lot of love and positivity, as to not leave it at a serious, emotional wreckage of a call. Being able to both go to sleep at peace. Though I felt awful for him only having an hour and a half left of sleep, he said this conversation was needed. And he didn’t mind it, so long as we got through it. And we did.
So this post was super long and I didn’t want to add too many of the details because it would get even longer. However, the point is, we got through it. After a long time of climbing that wall, falling down it again, hitting that stupid effin’ wall for the 100th time and then finally, in the end, getting over the wall and being able to breathe a little more than before. The planning will never stop, the hardships will never stop, the serious conversations will never stop until we actually live together one day. I never had my doubts about us, or him. However, it crept up inside of me while we were talking and I was seriously afraid for us. Afterwards however, I realized yet AGAIN(I know I aaalways say this), how much I love him and that I never have to fear the worst from happening. At least, it will not happen because of lack of will power or lack of love. Never say never of course… but I will still say it 😉 because I don’t want to say otherwise. So I have another post planned for today, something I’ve been thinking of doing for a while. Another tip and trick kind of post. It will definitely be a whole lot shorter than this one. So if you’re up for another read, stay tuned 🙂
xoxo thanks for following me, thanks for being here with me through it and overall just thanks for being here, guys ❤ Have a lovely day !
Just a few more months. I can hold you again, I can feel your skin against mine again. I can smell your smell again. That smell that only you have. Just a few more months until I’ll be able to touch you again. Cuddle with you again and make weird faces with you again. Until we can joke about lame things again. Be in our own little bubble again. Just the two of us. Together.
If only for a few weeks, I’ll be happy again. Laying next to you again and waking up seeing you as the first person, again. I’ll be content. If only for a little while. I’ve waited so long for this moment. The few weeks before you’ll arrive will be the best because I get to mentally prepare myself for your arrival. Which means a lot of anxiety, but you know.. the good kind. The butterflies in my stomach again, the random giggles and the lip bites because you know I do this when I get anxious. The twinkle will come back into my eyes and I know it’s only for a little while, but really… any amount of time together will make me whole again. We will go to random places, I’ll show you around my country. And yes, even I will be a tourist in my own country for a bit. I’ll hold hands with you again and we will definitely get that couple jewelry when you’re here. I’ve got so much planned for us together when you’re here…. in a few months.
I want nothing more to see you get squeezed by my mother, because believe me, you will. I want to formally introduce you to my parents and see you converse with them, laugh with them, be amazed with them. I want you to be a part of my life even more than you already have been. And you will be… in just a few more months.