A wise man says to me:
If you don’t stop avoiding the obvious, you will probably get bitten in the butt by a spider.
Well, I’m not sure how “wise”, as I would never write “get bitten”, but this is another story. Military families often spend months apart while one partner is on deployment. Couples who have one partner going through a terrible illness or ordeal often are not sexually active for a while. There are all kinds of rough situations that two people can go through.
But a long distance relationship that cannot have plans to come together faces doom. I admire the woman in this letter to Cary Tennis at Salon who cries herself to sleep on being separated from her husband. I am not sleeping at all! Or here, the woman who at least knows the answer to the ever-present question “are we together” – even if she waited 2.5 years to get a “no”. I’m sorry it didn’t work out, but at least she can move on with her life.
This man, Mr. Faraway, says verbally he wants to be with me, and spends a lot of time on the phone/text/skype with me. But when it comes down to actually planning the logistics of a life together, he melts away. This is pretty typical commitment stuff from a guy, but it is compounded by us being so far apart.
So, I decided last week that I need to either go for it (like the girl who moved 8000 miles to be with her mate), or move on. I can’t miss his daughter’s Christmas pagaent any more. His daughter has grown from 4 to 6 during our relationship, now, and her growth into a child is the strongest marker that time is passing.
I need to try moving slowly – first a month, then maybe two. And if at two years, this relationship is still nebulous like the clouds, I need to act and regain my self. We are writing a grant together to see if we can be together. This grant has about a 10% chance of being funded, and would involve us moving to a small Caribbean latin american country for a year. This move could also be called the “hail mary pass”.
As long as there is a plan, I could probably wait like Odysseus’ wife Penelope – for a very long time.
Penelope waits 20 years for the return of Odysseus, and has a hard time snubbing her 108 suitors. Because of her efforts to put off remarriage, Penelope is often seen as a symbol of connubial fidelity. Although we are reminded several times of her fidelity, Penelope does begin to become restless (in part because of Athena’s meddling), and longs to “display herself to her suitors, fan their hearts, inflame them more” (xviii.183-84). (Wikipedia)