Next part of the “How I Met My Girlfriend” series. Links to all HIMMGF posts here.
The thing about being a part from Jas is that it’s something I am constantly aware of. The harder I try to just distract myself from how lonely it feels to be without her, the harder it hurts. It’s impossible not to think about the mornings spent in the hotel room in Rosemont Chicago before her flight that evening. The way I felt her body shake in my arms. I tried to comfort her through loud and messy sobs that my parents could hear through the closed door. It lasted almost an hour.
So scared, she managed to say between long ragged gasps for air. No plan. Several minutes passed every time she tried to speak, and only fragments of sentences came out. What if you, her body crumpled into mine, voicing sobs that my brain recalls any time I miss her too much, never come back.
And I sobbed too. She was speaking my same fears. As much as we love each other, as much as we know what we want, we have no idea what we’re doing. We don’t know how to make it to the next step. Every part of our relationship is a guess that’s a gone right. And when we’re about to say goodbye, it reminds us that we still have a lot of guesses left to make.
The first month of being apart isn’t just about missing each other’s physical presence; it again falls back to that crushing, wretched feeling of uncertainty. The kind of uncertainty that–if you think about too long–makes my stomach begin churning acid that I can feel rising inside me. This is the hardest part about a long distance relationship. It’s not the missing, it’s not the spending birthdays and anniversaries apart, it’s about the guessing.
This year of missing Jas was harder than the last. Her mental health has taken a bit of a dip, putting more pressure on both of us to maintain our healthy communication. I’ve moved back home with my family and lived without the friends I’ve made at college. Back at school, I at least had some friends or my roommates to put the missing Jasmin on pause every once in a while. But now, all I do is miss my friends and miss Jas, and I don’t have any distractions. And even more so, this wait has been longer than the last by several months.
In July, I booked my flights to go back. Sometime in the spring, we decided that we definitely wanted to do Christmas this year. I wanted more than Christmas. I wanted Christmas and Thanksgiving and Boxing Day and New Year’s Eve. I wanted our anniversary together and I wanted Valentine’s Day. There were a lot of firsts that most couples of three years would have by now. So finally, we’re making it happen this year. My flight leaves on October 23 and I’ll come back on February 18. This has been getting me through every hardship I’ve had to face, not just with Jas, but with my life in general.
Now we are finally going to have all these firsts together.
A few weeks ago, I bought a new suitcase. It’s yellow, orange, and purple, like a sunrise on the horizon before it breaks. Or a sun that just fell over the edge of the Earth. Either way, it’s still the place I’m trying to get too. Where she is, at the convergence of sky of land, of mind and body, of romance and friendship.