I land at the airport and my anxiety instantly heightens. I walk off the plane and head towards the baggage claim area. My hands begin to shake while I impatiently wait for my bag to arrive on the conveyor belt. Once I grab my bags, I walk through the double doors towards the rest of my life.
Leading up to this intense moment began 6 months prior in September of 2014. I had a blog on a website called Tumblr. Tumblr was your typical blogging platform. It allowed you to post pictures you liked, quotes you enjoyed, and your own writing. You were also allowed to “repost” content, which meant if you enjoyed what another person posted, you could “reblog” it onto your own. Tumblr was easy. You quickly made friends, knew who liked your subject matter, could comment on other people’s posts, and even message someone privately. It was an all-in-one masterpiece if you were into that sort of thing.
One day while checking my blog, I noticed I had a message from a person I regularly reposted from. It was a guy, whom I had never spoken with before, but we had similar content and interests. He messaged me saying hello and that he would like to get to know me. The first thought I had was, “Oh, well this is really nice of him!” but it quickly turned into, “Wait a second. What if this guy is a creeper?” I decided to investigate his blog a bit more deeply and found out a few things about him. One, he enjoyed writing. Two, he loved to read, and three, he was from Canada. “Perfect!” I thought – he was just far enough away that he could never get to me if he really was a serial killer.
I messaged Trevor back explaining that I was a bit cautious, but also interested. I also asked what part of Canada he was from in order to keep the conversation
going. I quickly hit “send” and went on with my day. Little did I know, these two messages would change the course of the rest of my life.
We began talking through the messaging system on Tumblr. First, the messages were short and sweet – getting to know each other and describing our likes, dislikes, and interests. Eventually, these short messages turned into long paragraphs discussing our hopes and dreams for our futures. I felt unsure of this man at first. Was he really as genuine as he seemed? Was he really who he said he was? Why do I like this person so much? I was confused, taken aback, and scared for what lay ahead, but I continued speaking with him anyway.
These conversations through Tumblr went on for a few weeks, until one evening, I had some liquid courage with my colleagues, and decided to ask Trevor for his phone number. The next morning, I immediately felt embarrassed for the possibility of coming on too strong with this person who resided in a completely different country. I got online to message him and tell him to forget what I had said the previous night before, but to my surprise, less than 24 hours later, a message from Trevor was in my inbox with his phone number staring at me across the screen. Still embarrassed, I let the message sit there for a few days. Radio silence. I think he understood or had an inkling to the humiliation I felt, because a few days later, he messaged me again saying it was alright to text him anytime. I was still just as mortified, but decided to get it over with and texted him a few hours later.
We continued our prose from there and got to know each other even more over the next couple of months. He was funny, charming, and made me feel at home even though he was thousands of miles away. I still didn’t know if he truly was the person he claimed to be, but I didn’t let that stop me from getting closer to him.
One day, after about a collective 3 months of speaking to him nearly every day, he mentioned that we should Skype so we could see each other face to face. I nervously agreed – after all, I needed to know if this man truly was who he said he was. We settled on a Skype date for the following evening.
The next day was stressful. It felt like I was waiting for a ticking time bomb to go off. 6 p.m. rolled around and it was go time. I logged onto my computer and immediately saw his name on my contacts list. My heartbeat soared. He started the conversation by messaging me and asking if I was ready to accept his call. I replied back with a simple, “Yes,” and he called.
Awkward. Our Skype call was awkward. It was a new experience seeing him face to face, or screen to screen, rather, and we both weren’t very sure of what to say to each other. Our conversation lasted about an hour and when we hung up, I was left feeling disappointed. Why were we masters at speaking through text, but amateurs when it came to our own voices? It was frustrating.
He texted me the next day and everything went back to normal. We were talking again with our usual elation and anticipation for each other. To my surprise, he said he wanted to Skype again the following day. I didn’t think he would ever want to Skype with me again due to our awkwardness the previous night. Again, I was excited, yet nervous. Was this going to be smoother than last time? Would we actually have something to talk about?
Our second Skype call was exponentially better. It felt like we had known each other for years. Our conversation didn’t stop for three hours and I left it feeling extremely satisfied. We continued talking through text and Skype for a few days until one night, we were on the verge of falling asleep on screen, and he told me he was falling in love with me. I smiled because I was falling in love with him, too. I told him this and the following day we decided to become exclusive.
I felt crazy. I had never met this man in my entire life, yet here I was, IN LOVE and no longer dating anybody but him. We decided right then and there that we had to meet each other. Since this was around Christmas time, the next logical date to meet each other would be during Spring Break since I had the time off. I bought my $600 ticket and we began counting down the days while continuing to fall for each other through the interwebs.
Fast forward three months, and I was finally at the Calgary airport waiting to meet the love of my life. To say I was nervous is a grand understatement. When I walked through the double doors and saw him, it wasn’t like the movies. There were no grand gestures. We didn’t run into each other’s arms excitedly. We didn’t kiss each other like we had talked about doing. Much like our Skype call, it was awkward. We gave each other a quick hug and couldn’t stop staring at each other. Our time was finally here and we were finally within reach. And while it was uncomfortable at first, after a few minutes, everything returned to normal. We were ecstatic to be near each other and to have ultimately closed the distance.
I learned a lot that week in Canada and continued to learn more throughout the course of our long distance relationship. I learned that I was definitely, for sure, completely in love. I learned that saying goodbye really is the hardest part. I learned that long distance relationships are difficult, but worth it. I learned that you can’t be selfish or prideful in a relationship like this. It was the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do, but it it has brought the greatest reward.
P.S. We are married now.