We were afraid to fully commit to each other. It was agreed that, given the circumstances, it would be best if we remained as friends. We knew it would be difficult, considering there was already the tension of affection between us. It was so apparent that our friends even encouraged us to make it ‘official’, but we resisted. For a time at least. We knew that whatever we started would only be ripped apart when she moved overseas in a few months.
It wasn’t long before we caved, or rather, I caved. We’d spent too much time together and one night I decided to go for it. Without a single thought as to what it would eventually come to.I leaned in and kissed her fully on the lips. A few days later we were officially ‘official’. We were happy together, but I had broken our agreement. She would be leaving soon for a far away country, and I would remain here, half a world away.
We’d discussed the option of a long-distance relationship and had eagerly coaxed ourselves into it. Crazy in love, we couldn’t imagine being apart and thus continued in our gamble at love. We became the cute, soppy couple that stared intently into each other’s eyes, whispering sweet nothings as if trying to one-up each other in our little love game. We became the couple that people didn’t like to look at. We made others feel uncomfortable in our presence and we were proud of it. It was a mark of our dedication to each other. We weren’t embarrassed or shy about ourselves. Nor did we care what anyone else though of us. We had a special kind of love. The kind of love that’s intensely wonderful in its way of enhancing life. The kind of love that might have lasted.
That’s when she left.
Each day grew tougher than the last. We’d promised to call when we had the time, but without her by my side it became easy to forget the love we had once shared. In completely different time zones, we lost sleep trying to make our long-distance relationship work. Our sleep deprivation lead to short tempers, and before too long we were arguing over the smallest things.
Our love began to fade and it was my entirely fault. We’d made an agreement to stay as friends; to stop ourselves from the hurt we knew would come from further commitment, but I wasn’t strong enough to shut out my feelings for her. As the months passed it was common for days to go by without any contact. Our rare catch-up calls always ended in a fight, but we still cared deeply for each other. Could we still call it Love, or were we being fooled by the ghost of what was? Clinging on to the early memories of when we were side by side, we kept trying to fix our relationship, as if there were some magical words that once said would make everything better, but she had her life and I had mine.
She met new people and made new friends, just as I had done in our time apart. It seemed that we were leading different lives than what we once had; lives that left no room for our relationship.
It wasn’t much later that she broke it off between us. I wasn’t prepared for it, even though a part of me expected it. I felt responsible for our relationship. For beginning this journey with each other, I was the one that started it, and here she was, backing out of it. Maybe I am to blame for all of the heartache, and maybe I do deserve all of this pain for breaking my promise to her. I knew I had to follow my heart though. I had legitimate feelings for her and needed to know if what could’ve been could be.
The times we were together were some of the happiest moments I’ve ever had. Given the opportunity, I’d do it all again, and wouldn’t change a thing.