Love reckons hours for months, and days for years; and every little absence is an age.” (John Dryden)
There is no good reason to embark on a long distance relationship. It is far from easy. It requires strength, belief, trust, commitment, honesty and willpower. It is not for the fainthearted …
But, when does the heart listen to reason? Hers certainly didn’t.
As was her way, she fell in love from the moment she saw him, and the fact that he lived six hours away, and that the number of days they would be together was destined to be vastly outnumbered by the number of days they would be apart, mattered not.
The freedom to pursue her own life, whilst at the same time being in a relationship, would seem, on paper, to be an ideal scenario for the strong, independent woman she liked to believe she had become. She had a good life, a really good life. But, no matter what anyone says, deep down, right deep down, there is a place inside of us all that can only be filled by loving and being loved by someone special. And when it is, there is no other feeling like it in the world.
That is how he made her feel.
So, all the while she was living that really good life, she was waiting … to hear his voice, to look into his eyes, to feel his lips, to let her heart drown in his love. She looked to it for her strength, exhausted as she was by having to be brave alone, and in doing so, vulnerability suffocated her independent spirit, and she fell victim to the highs and lows of the long waiting game.
In love, she would not of course have changed a thing. She counted the days, the hours, the minutes until she jumped down from the train and ran into his arms at the end of the platform. It was all so tragically romantic. The times they were together hit those heart-soaring, live-for-the-moment, sexually-charged, adrenaline-soaked emotional highs that made all the waiting worthwhile.
And all the while, there was an unspoken pressure to make the most of the time, not to let a single moment pass to love, to talk, to touch, to look into his eyes and know that he felt the same, to make memories to sustain them during the waiting game. Absence, they say, makes the heart grow fonder … but it was never about loving more – it was about waiting, longing, and unwittingly putting him on a pedestal so high that there was always the danger of a fall.
The clock was always ticking – too slowly while they were apart, too quickly when they were together. They became experts, by necessity, at matter-of-fact goodbyes, no dramas, just a wave … and he was gone. The sanctuary of his embrace fading in an instant to the chill of his absence and the longing to see him again.
But she loved him, so very loved him. So she waited until the next time. Always, until the next time.