Long distance relationships are for lame ducks that can’t get love in real time. Or so I secretly thought until I met him a year ago in Marrakech at a film seminar and my judgement came to a screeching halt as long distance love happened to me.
We had a romantic week that I rationalized as a glorified one-night-stand. He left but he didn’t let me go. He used every form of technology to bring me into his world and prodded me to take him into mine. I turned a camera on myself and played make believe. With the help of technology we had breakfast together and slept with each other at night and I found some secret comfort to wake up watching him sleeping on my iphone in the middle of the night. He remembered every monthly anniversary date and took me on his daily drives to work and weekly family shabat lunches. We spoke for hours turning the world around and back.
I understand how wrong I was to think long distance was for lame ducks because it takes exceptional and committed ducks to find people outside of their backyard and then dare to love and dedicate discomfort and hardship and creativity to explore all thats possible to make love happen even if it sometimes burns holes in your pride and sometimes your heart.
He went home yesterday after the longest period of time working and living together and something surprising happened. Every time I looked over and saw him it wasn’t just that I was surprised he was really with me but it surprised me that I was falling in love with him as if for the first time. Walking towards me on my street or sitting with me wearing his reading glasses watching a movie in bed greeted me with a kick to my heart that rushed to the top and bubbled over. I have known him a long time, long enough to hurt him and be hurt by him but it felt all so new.
Everything about long distance love is backwards in the most delicious way. Discovering his mind first and his body last, his past and then his real time warts and beauty. I am falling in love with him still after a year. He is my friend now but as a lover he is still only a few weeks new for me and every time I look over and see him in ordinary actions, I am in awe of his kindness and filled with admiration at his determination.
If we have made it this far it has nothing to do with me and everything to do with his belief in us and in love. I look over and see him there and think, “G-d I love him.” I rush to grab him and it’s not enough. I make love to him and still it’s not enough. I kiss him, I hug him and it comes close but still not enough. If I spent the rest of my life it still might not be enough to learn how to tell him and show him that I love him and I wish I knew him since the start of my life and yet I am happy I met him now. I miss him. I think even my ashes will miss him to pieces.