Everyone who knows me knows I’m a sucker for a romantic story. So I’m sorry for the friend who complained about me writing about love… I promise I will tell you some other stories, just not this time.
This time, I will tell you about A and his friend J. I met A last summer, he was working a summer job through one of those youth government programs and was placed at my office (another government agency). Like any other teenager, A was involved with sports, friends, and social media. What really caught my attention was that the highlight of his summer was the visit of a longtime friend. For the time that he was working at my office, I heard a lot of things about J. His eyes would lit up every time he talked about her and I just wanted to know more as days passed because this was a real love story in the making.
A and J were best friends growing up together until J’s mother moved her to the U.S mainland. You would think that they would grow apart since they were not only physically apart, but both involved in normal teenager things. To my surprise when I asked A about it, he told me how they decided to keep their relationship long distance by calling each other, texting, video calling and of course, the help of social media, our ally in the battle against long distance.
I was clearly impressed by A and his commitment even when other teenagers didn’t seem to have his level of understanding and faith in a relationship like this. He is very mature in everything regarding his LDR and his future plans with his S/O. Now this here is something you don’t see every day – a guy with a plan! They have one more year of high school before they can start to close the distance and they are not taking any steps back. He is very sure j is not only her S/O but her soul mate… he was sure of this since they were younger.
I know a lot of people will think or say that they are too young. But let this be an example of dedication, effort, commitment…all key ingredients to build a lasting relationship. Let this be an example of what love can do if we learn to nurture it from a young age. Let this be an amazing love story (in the making).
Most fairy tales start with a damsel in distress and the knight in shining armor that comes to her rescue. This isn’t one of those stories. This story starts with my Sis, a warrior princess and her valiant prince who were not afraid to fight the war for love.
Their story is one filled with sacrifices, lost internet connections, sleepless nights because of time difference and of course, the most difficult trial of all, distance. Armed with patience, courage and determination and using love as their most valuable weapon and shield, I am proud to say that my Sis and her prince conquered the first battle: Marriage.
You see, my sister, the warrior princess is from the US and her boyfriend, the valiant prince is from Pakistan. They met online and had a long distance relationship for several years. All their sacrifices finally paid off when they were able to get all the paperwork done to marry in a third country on April 9th. I won’t lie here. It took time, planning and lots of money. This isn’t a battle for the faint of heart or the faithless, but what I want to do is to give others a little idea – using their experiences as reference – so they can know what to expect and how to prepare.
This are some of the documents needed:
Keep in mind that these are only some of the documents required. The documents needed will depend mostly on the country you are getting married. Some countries will required your paperwork to be translated to some other language (English for example) and for them to be apostilled if the country is a member of the Hague Convention (Apostille Convention). That specific procedure allows your document to be certified for legal purposes internationally. Remember that there are other steps and fees that you may need to take/pay in the country. Always do your research by yourself or with the help of a professional, for example, a lawyer.
Those are key pieces of information that will help you in your journey for love, in your way to marriage and in the battle against distance. When we are in love we think we are an army of two. Sometimes it might even feel like it. Know you are not alone. There are others like my Sis who won the battle. Her story doesn’t end here. The warrior princess and her prince valiant are getting ready for their next battle together. Now they have to plan their next adventure and build their kingdom together. I can’t say “And they lived happily ever after”… at least not yet. But what I can say to you is this: The future may have many names… but for that person, the name is yours.
I keep re reading old conversations. It’s inevitable to laugh every time I read old messages. I find incredible that someone can remember details that would be so easy to forget. I laugh because there are events, things and people we never forget about. We keep making and accumulating so many memories throughout our lives; sometimes we forget some of them to make space for the new ones.
It’s beautiful to know that someone has chosen to keep the memories they have of me. That they didn’t simply forget about everything just to make space for something else or because of someone else. I guess in the end that’s what we become… someone else’s memories.
Maybe I can’t make you fall in love with me. I don’t think that you even want to fall in love. Feeling love is one of the things we deny ourselves most of the times…but maybe I can make you think about me on a normal day while you drink coffee and doodle in a napkin. Maybe you will throw it away but not without smiling first. Maybe I will never know about it. Maybe someday you call me and say in the most casual way “I thought about you today” and then I would know I’m making progress. I’m not asking for every day of the rest of your life but a minute in your heart.
I want you to think about me without needing a reason why…the same way I think about you and smile. Maybe someday life will surprise us with a “you know what? I love you” and with “I love you too”. That day you will know that not everything is lost, there are feelings that are always there inside our soul waiting for the person to make them come out (even for just a minute) from inside our hearts.
The next series of posts are titled Confessions of a LDR gf for a reason. Their purpose is to say or “confess” what every person in a ldr wished his s/o knew, but we are too afraid to point it out directly to our partners. We don’t want them to feel like they are failing. What we want to do is to remind them (and ourselves in the process) that we can build better, stronger relationships. Yes, thou it’s mostly us on the scene, I can’t leave out of the picture the true fact that there are guys out there fighting for another day to keep their LDR’s alive. Guys we salute you 😉 👍.
To start off I don’t want to demean or discourage anyone’s efforts, or way of handling their relationships. No offense intended on my part, but I do wish to open up and speak in the name of many struggling with the issues I’ll address today.
Nowadays in LDR’s we tend to pour out our hearts in actions, words, efforts and as in many cases we even give away a part of our lives we’ll never get back, and that part is our time so willingly and lovingly invested.
Not that we complain about it, we struggle, adjust and overcome it because of different time zones, circumstances and even cultural differences. Yet something comes to my heart and it troubles me at all times. I for example am a very emotional person, I feel everything I do has to be weighed before set out there for the world to see but that’s just me, I know for a fact each one of us handles this special kind of relationship as a delicate one because not everyone is made to withstand distance, or the type of relationship many will question.
My heartfelt attention is the tremendous weight of efforts made on our part that go unnoticed by our sentimental partners, or as we call them S/O.
Instead of getting our S/O attention, we end up showered and encouraged by others who know us well, and even dare to try out as suitors for our hearts. But do we give in to those suitors? Of course not!! We’re only into the object of our affection. If not, we’d be seeking the attention offered when others seem to know what we like, what we don’t, when something goes wrong and can tune in to our emotions.
Not many understand our devotion surpasses all of these things. In fact we have our ups and downs as those in a normal standard relationship, except we guard it with a not so invisible shield of undivided attention. We continue to hope our feelings are felt, understood, delivered and reciprocated.
We can even compare it to an app used on a daily basis: we go to it, we text, we send, all in hopes it will be seen and replied to. Still seconds become hours in our hearts and when not understood we become wounded, and in some cases we hold our feelings back in avoidance of “confrontation mode” as I call it.
Our hearts are visited as a place of invisible encounters and rare meetings. Because we then begin to build a force field that repels any advances intending to break it down…but reality is we’re only trying to salvage any remains left of our soul’s feelings.
To read more about long distance relationships don’t forget to follow Dua e Maryam at Voice of a Broken Heart
Birthdays are special occasions. When you are in a LDR it can be hard to cebrate it the way you wish. Today it’s Ahmad’s birthday and I hope my words reach where I can’t be so I wrote him a little note that I would like to share here.
My only hope is that we get to celebrate many more birthdays together in the future.