The Perfect Circumstance for Long Distance to Fail


I am surrounded by couples who have either recently moved in together, or live within a five-mile radius from each other. Their lives have meshed both emotionally and geographically. I sit with my eyes secretly peering over my laptop as my roommate and her boyfriend eat a home-cooked meal and share a bottle of Pinot Noir. They saw each other yesterday. And all weekend. And three times the week before. Don’t get me wrong, I am incredibly happy for their thriving relationship. It just makes my situation that much harder to bear.

My single life saw many moon phases, but finally, a few stars in the sky aligned and I found myself in a relationship. Let us rejoice! The days of bad first dates and online dating are over.  I can put all my efforts toward my new title: a girlfriend. Don’t jump to the celebratory champagne and roaring applause just yet, however. My life is never that simple. I may have found a bilingual, musically-inclined, dental student, but there is always a catch. In this case, the hindrance is distance. North Carolina and Massachusetts are 700 miles away.

Evidently, this fact slips right by me as I eat a home-cooked meal and share a bottle of Pinot Noir with a sun-kissed man who says 'y’all'. For a while, I forget we’re even long distance because a two-hour flight seems like a pretty small hurdle. Time slows down during the 2-5 days I get to play girlfriend every month. It is not the ideal situation, but after a year of bad dates, I am willing to make the sacrifice.

I finally found someone who looks back over his shoulder at me, smiling, when ordering drinks at a bar. I found someone who makes great company on long car rides. I found someone who takes me to meet all his local friends and family. He loves adventure and hurls me out of my comfort zone. Notwithstanding all the positives, I also found someone who lives 700 miles away.

How much am I actually willing to sacrifice to be in a relationship? I find myself questioning the true meaning of the word. In all my free time, talking to myself, I decided to consult Merriam-Webster.

Relationship: (noun) -  the way in which two or more concepts, objects, or people are connected, or the state of being connected.

Connected. Well, I definitely am not connected via cellphone. Or proximity. Maybe I am connected through shared interests? Probably not even that, though; he speaks a whole other language I barely can understand and lacks basic communication skills. I found someone who responds to every other text message 24-72 hours after the blue bubble reads “delivered”. Generally, I am not a needy person; I take pride in my independence. But lord, a girl has basic needs. I enjoy a good rant every now and then. I appreciate an occasional “how was your day”. Isn’t the point of being in a relationship to give my roommates a break from my constant chatter?

Being in a long distance relationship with someone who hates technology and hardly uses it is like going shopping without a wallet. It just does not work and usually ends with feelings of foolishness and annoyance. You also start overthinking the entire situation as you wander around the store, penniless and alone.

Then again, I don't like over-communicators. I'm not sure if that is even a word, but I can't stand constant chatter. I like my space and silence. But I don't like being ignored. Maybe one day I'll find a happy medium. Key word: happy. 

Samantha Clark