When Time Stands Still // LDR Thoughts

I'm not good at breaking rules, even ones that are self imposed. When I started a full time job back in 2016, I set a goal for myself that no matter what, I was going to write at least three blog posts a month. I don't think anyone else in the world cared if I accomplished this very arbitrary goal, but come the last day of the month, there was a good chance you'd find me rushing to finish up a post before the clock struck midnight. I'm proud that I've hit that goal every single month since I created my blog almost 3 years ago, but it is time for a change. In both June and August, I only delivered two posts. It was undoubtedly due to busyness; but also, as life priorities shift, I'm becoming pickier and only want to post content that is exciting or meaningful to me in some way.

With that said, in this post I want to share some thoughts on LDR - an acronym anyone who has experienced long distance relationship would instantly recognize, probably with a sigh. I've experienced all kinds of distances in my relationships, from a two-hour drive to 13 hour international flights. My best friend and I talk about it so often that we have coined terms like "short long distance" and "long long distance", which we decided, are fundamentally very different. After seeing my boyfriend pretty much daily for years, we have finally settled into our new situation of being separated by a 5 hour flight. Here are some thoughts I have about LDR and please do share your thoughts and experiences with me!

 

The hard part is not missing each other, it's NOT missing each other. Going from a "normal" (what's the opposite of a LDR?) relationship to a long distance relationship feels a lot like a breakup, especially since we lived together. I had to look for my own apartment, figure out what to do with all his things and go through the dreadful yet exciting moving process. It felt every bit like the start of a new chapter and I took it as such. I devoted my time to working hard, decorating my apartment, catching up with friends, and looking into new things to try. I adjusted really well and that should be a good thing, but I almost felt guilty for not missing him more. Herein lies the contradiction of long distance relationships. Constantly missing someone is painful, and we instinctively want to avoid pain. But if we don't miss the other person anymore, we might feel disconnected from them and start wondering: what is the point?? It's all about a healthy balance of staying connected to your partner while living your own life as well.

You can't be afraid to grow. All long term relationships face the challenge of two people eventually growing apart, instead of together. This challenge is only amplified in long distance relationships. I would be lying if I said that fear of growing apart isn't paralyzing sometimes, especially in the lead-up to our moves. However, the more rational side of me knows that the only way forward is to grow as much as possible as individuals. We have a strong foundation, and becoming better people should only bring us closer. If some day we won't be together anymore, well, at least we will be happy with who we will become.

It's exciting too! Yes I definitely think that long distance relationships have pros. Jerry came to visit me this past long weekend and we had the best few days ever in LA. Being apart makes us appreciate each other and our time in this eclectic city more. I am someone who craves and dreams of adventure, and this weekend felt like one. We perused galleries in Arts District, shopped on Abbot Kinney, brunched in Los Feliz, sunbathed on the beach, ate every kind of Asian food we could, took fun photos of each other, got lost in deep conversations over coffee... Everything was exciting in a way that a normal weekend can rarely be. It was an escape from real life. It was as if time stood still.