It’s true what they say, absence makes the heart grow fonder.
For those of you that do not know, my boyfriend and I are dating long distance! Sounds crazy, right? Well, that’s exactly what I thought 4 years ago. My boyfriend, Joseph, lives in New York and I live right outside Boston. We are about a 4-hour car ride from each other. Approximately 180 miles away.
Let me start off by saying that being in an LDR has been one of the best experiences of my life, and I’m not just saying that because I’m dating my best friend. Love is beautiful, love can also hurt, but name a better feeling than being in love with your best friend. However, an LDR is not for everyone. It takes a significant amount of respect, communication, trust, forgiveness, and commitment. If you’re not 110% ready for that, then it won’t work out.
THE BEGINNING: I’ll keep this part short and sweet 🙂 Joe and I first started dating in 2015. His job required him to be in Boston a couple of times a month running events, so that’s basically how we first met and started to get to know each other! He was very sweet, persistent, and eager to get to know me better right from the start. Truthfully, I was terrified and did not take him seriously because I knew that he lived far, but I also wanted to protect myself from getting hurt, so I kept my distance (literally).
To my surprise, Joseph never stopped reaching out to me. He called me every single night where we talked about everything until the sun came up. He texted me good morning and goodnight every single day. I was confused. I mean, how often do you come across a guy who knows what he wants and goes after it wholeheartedly? Slowly, but surely, I started to feel a strong connection. How could you not? You talk to the same person every single day and BOOM; cue the butterflies. This was the foundation that built our relationship. Communication. He became my best friend first. The first person that I wanted to talk about my day. The first person to tell that I aced my exam. The first person to call when I was upset or needed advice. We got to know each other extremely well in a couple of months. Shortly after, Joseph took me out on our first date where we went to see the Minion movie!! I’m obsessed with minions. He drove 4 hours to pick me up and then drove 4 hours back home..on the SAME DAY. I mean, seriously? Who else would do that? Years later, he told me that he actually slept in a Home Depot parking lot because he was way too exhausted 😂 (fun fact: he kept the movie ticket and still has it in his wallet :’))
After our first date, we instantly hit it off. We then made it official two days before Christmas!
Let me backtrack for a moment. The decision to become official was VERY hard. It took very serious and long conversations every day. I had no idea if I was ready for this. I mean, I was 19 years old at the time! Ultimately, that decision led me to one of the best things that ever happened to me. I trusted my gut and followed my heart. It was extremely terrifying, but wow when I think about the love that we’ve shared over the years it makes me feel all warm inside.
Joseph has grown to not only become my best friend but my partner in life. Relationships are hard and complicated sometimes, but finding that one person that balances, respects, values, and appreciates every little thing that you do is the key to a strong and fulfilled relationship. He’s my person. Without a doubt in my mind. We truly bring out the best in each other, and we’ve grown to appreciate each other SO much more because of the distance.
THE DISTANCE: Truthfully, the first few years were arguably the hardest and most stressful times of my life. I was a full-time college student working part-time, and Joseph was working full-time. It took a lot of sacrifices to plan out weekends to see each other. We typically spent Friday-Sunday morning together, and we tried our best to see each other every other weekend. Twice a month. Those days were the absolute worst. Leaving your best friend. Saying goodbye. It’s a little embarrassing admitting that I bawled my eyes out way too much when it was time to go home. It honestly broke my heart. It still happens sometimes! It NEVER gets easier.
One amazing perk about the distance is that it has helped us focus on our selves. It taught us how to be independent. We couldn’t let the distance consume us, otherwise, we would be miserable and mope around all day. Yes, it absolutely sucks not seeing your s.o whenever you want, but you need to have hobbies. You need to be your own person first. This holds true to any relationship. This important aspect of our relationship is what has helped us survive thus far. It taught me how to be ambitious and pursue my passions in life.
Our relationship would not be the same had we not started dating long distance first. We have gone through so much together as a couple and we always resolved all of our issues at the end of the day. Over the years, we’ve become stronger, more patient, more understanding, and more loving. The distance has truly solidified our bond as a couple, and for that, I am forever grateful. There’s nothing that we can’t get through together. I wish that people could understand how an LDR feels because it is so pure, true, and beautiful. It’s 110% worth it. We share a special kind of love that I wish everyone could experience. My favorite part of our LDR? Each time we visit, it feels like we’re seeing each other for the first time. The butterflies never stop. Ever. There is no “honeymoon” phase. Everyone advised me that eventually you fall out of love and the butterflies die down. I wish they knew how wrong they are.
4 years later, Joseph and I are still dating long distance (unfortunately). We always have an end game in mind, and we are continuing to be patient and let everything fall into place the way that it should! We see each other quite more often than we did in the beginning, but we always have something to look forward to whether that’s planned getaways or fun things to do when we are visiting Boston/New York. We truly cannot WAIT until the days where we finally get to be together and put our long distance to rest.
To conclude our beautiful love story, I want to leave you all on a special note:
Date your best friend. Please do not take that lightly. Life is SO beautiful when you’re dating your best friend. Love can be an incredible, indescribable feeling when it’s reciprocated back to you. Learn from each other. Grow with each other. Never spite, act petty, or belittle one another. Listen to each other. Be each other’s biggest supporter and critic. Push each other to become a better person than who you were yesterday. Talk about life, the things that matter the most to you. Talk about your issues; open and honest communication is crucial. Talk about your day. This next one is very important. Never, and I mean never go to bed mad at each other. That is the top 5 worst feelings in the world. Apologize for whatever happened even if you’re not wrong and just please make it right. Joseph and I have promised to never let that happen. Share adventures with each other. Plan weekend getaways, visit cities you both have never been to. Go on baecations! Make Friday nights date night. Fall in love with each other more and more every day. Be kind, be patient, and be forgiving.
Relationships are a partnership. It can never be one-sided. You both have to work together in order to make it work. I promise you, the right person will never give up on you. No matter how far away you are.
“Some souls just instantly click. Whether you’re lovers, best friends, soul mates, or something else. You accept this person for everything they are, and they would never let you be anything less than your beautiful and sometimes flawed self.” I think that’s how you know you’ve met ‘your person’.