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Transatlantic

Falling in love over the Internet

Taken from my blogpost on March 6th 2013

At Night

Mind: “Eh, what the hell do you think you’re doing”
Heart: “I don’t think, that’s your job”
Mind: “Do you know how many complications you’re creating here?”
Heart: “I don’t see how that’s my problem. The heart wants what the heart wants”
Mind: “Well did you at least figure out what you want then?”
Heart: “Beats me…”
Stomach: “Hey, until you guys figure it out, I’m going to contract and jump around, cool?”
Me: “Will you guys quit it so I can get some sleep?”
Organs: “BWAHAHAHAHAHAHA”
Me: “Sigh”
*gets up for another cigarette*

I sit staring into the space in front of me without seeing. Everything has taken a turn for the surreal. I am not this person. I don’t get attached. I don’t need to find love interests online. I don’t e-date. I don’t believe in it.

Then his name appears online. My heart starts beating faster. My palms get sweaty. My stomach starts doing flips. The dorkiest of smiles spreads across my face. Oh yeah, I am crushing hard. I’ve dealt with crushes before. They always fade. It’s nothing.

But it’s not nothing. I can’t sleep. I can’t eat. I can’t keep my mind on the things I am supposed to be doing. At least 4 times a week I decide to take a little break from social media. Within 24 hours I find myself logging in again.

I try to resist. Resisting is the logical option. There’s seven thousand kilometers and five time zones between us. It’s not long before my female friends are dropping me knowing messages; “he is cute.” My true feelings are clear to everyone but myself, it seems.

Taken from message exchange on March 21st 2013

(sent during office hours)

[…] Some of it is sweet. I don’t mind being called radiant for instance. And I’m passing that one on cause it’s you making me radiate. I’m in love and it’s showing. <our mutual social media friends>are now PM-ing me ‘may i ask about Geoff’. I wasn’t going to be secretive about it, but I wasn’t planning on flaunting it either.

(his second response to my message)

Woah, woah, woah — Just because I’m busy fielding a technical support call with one hand and about a fifteenth of my mind — don’t think you can slip something like that past me[…]
I am glad I am not the only one. The slightly sweaty palms, the pounding heart, the constant smile.

Yes, I am also in love with you.

How did this become my life? I am in love with a man I only know from the internet. That was never part of the plan. It feels like I had very little say in the matter. It just happened, whether I liked it or not. The more I get to know him the more I realize I could-not not fall in love with him.

None of the people we hang out with in our little virtual-sphere are surprised. We just make sense. We have so much in common — from shared interests to posting similar opinions at the same time. I am surprised. Surprised at how easy it is to do without the physical. The connection I feel makes up for everything.

An email lands in my inbox, with links to a video. Before, I’ve reacted to those words with polite smiles. A couple of times with a slight blush. There have even been occasions I have genuinely smiled — the sort of smile that reached my eyes. Never have I had this sort of going-dark-around-the-edges-of-my-vision, room-spinning-around-me response. Recorded messages is the closest we can get to face to face. You even took the effort to learn to say it in my mother tongue. I love you.

Taken from my blogpost of May 14th 2013

Once upon a time, I knew a guy here who used to call me “the only normal woman left on the internet”.
I always replied that if he kept insulting me, we wouldn’t be friends anymore.
Admittedly the guy was a drama magnet, but a lot of that was his own doing. He had 2 maybe 3 girls convinced they were going to marry one day, heaven knows how many thinking they were boyfriend and girlfriend.
And even though he was the stereotype player in some aspects, he really was a good friend. We could talk for hours, about everything.
But the thing is, it never meant anything. And it never would.
And I was told repeatedly how he admired that I was grounded and realistic enough not to get swept up in online flirtations…that I would never get to that point either….

Yeah….

I guess he’d be very disappointed.

*giggle*

So now I have given up my status as ‘the only normal woman’. No shame, no regrets, no going back.

Not too long ago, I made fun of the concept of “facebook official.” I didn’t think changing the status on a profile held much meaning. That people who made a big deal of it were frivolous. Funny how attitudes can change in a short time. We both change out status to “in a relationship”. It is…momentous.

As long as my mind is occupied by the person, and my heart is feeling it’s way forward, everything is simply natural, easy and right. It’s only when my over-thinking side insists on interfering, that my situation feels strange. It’s Inot doubt. It’s more stunned confusion. Why? How? Being in a long-distance online relationship is none of the things I associated with it before. There’s no fears, no jealousy. Very little desperation. And certainly no settling. Even though we are never within arms reach, I feel less lonely than in any relationship before this. There’s trust. And a whole lot of effort into understanding each other. Communication is all we have. And it’s so easy to communicate.

Taken from my blogpost of June 24th 2013

Love is something strange.
In your 30s it’s stranger still. ‘Old enough to know better, young enough not to care’ certainly applies.

When you’ve both been hurt and caused hurt and managed to work through the bitterness, you’d like to think you came out a little wiser, a little more grounded, fewer illusions…just to turn around and put yourself in the exact same position as you were before?

Yes, yes I did. Without irony even. That must be love.

You do it too. Bold statements, I fully believe are made in all sincerity, but when they are looked at objectively do put you at a disadvantage. And even when I point that out, you don’t back down. Why? That must be love.

We fancy ourselves people of science. All about proof and fact. And yet…how do you prove what you feel? We take each others word, without even a look or a touch? That’s an enormous leap of faith. How did that happen? That must be love.

Love makes me stupid. Love makes me wonder. Love makes me believe. Love makes me trust. Love makes me happy.

Love makes my life worth living.

Only one problem…
How can you honestly expect me not to say

Thank you

Five years have passed. There is no end to this story, happy or otherwise. My partner is in another part of the world. And while it’s the new normal, it’s not any less amazing. In the ‘causing great surprise or wonder; astonishing’ meaning of the word as well as the ‘startlingly impressive’ meaning.

We’re not where we prefer to be. Life is messy, riddled with setbacks and little victories. We navigate it together, seven thousand kilometers and five time zones apart. I have cursed the ocean countless times. Is it hard? In moments. Overall? So much easier than it should be.

Writer of fiction, blogs and erotica. Frequency in that order. Popularity in reverse.

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