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I came across some bloggers who are in long distance relationships, writing about the challenges of it. It got me thinking about my own LDR.

sitting on plane in window seat at night with earbuds in ears

We spend a lot of time flying back and forth.

Usually it’s not in my conscious mind that I’m actually in a long distance relationship. Perhaps I’ve just been doing it for so long? The way my life is now, well, it’s all pretty normal to me (but it’s certainly not what I want long-term). Panda and I are coming on 5 years and at least half of that time has been apart, whether just a city or two away or an entirely different side of the world. Just months into our relationship, I decided to take an opportunity to work in Singapore. I was gone for about half a year and it was hard. Our relationship was actually fine the whole time – we got to chat on Skype and write long emails to each other to share our days. The strain was more in other aspects of my life, brought on in part due to the fact that I missed him so much. When I came back, we had some precious months together.

About a year later, he had moved home after graduating college and was preparing to start his working life. For another half a year or so, I only got to see him fleetingly whenever I could visit him at his house on weekends or days off work. And then, since March of 2011, he has been living out on the east coast. At first, I got to see him about one week a month. As that first year was ending, I was seeing him less and less (not as much travel for work) so I made a bold decision to quit my job and try out entrepreneurial endeavors. This gave me a chance to stay with him more frequently – a few months out of the year – and that’s where we’re at now.

I’m on the cusp of my next change: finding a job in his area so I can move there. Is it possible that our long distance days might finally be over? I dare not believe it yet. Not until I’ve secured a job and moved in and settled for a bit. It’s one of those dreams that has been following me for quite some time now and I’m really looking forward to making it come true. It’s been a long time coming and I want nothing more than a nice little home life with my beau. Oh, and I guess I want a house too. 😉

I think the greatest challenge in my LDR is the communication. It’s a lot harder when the sound quality on phone calls and video calls aren’t always that great (and things lag). It’s also hard trying to type it all since you often miss tone and true meaning. Panda and I will sit on Skype for hours at a time, both of us going about our days but being able to check in visually when we want, so we can feel like we’re almost in the same space. My favorite time with him is really the simple stuff in life – being able to sit next to each other as we do our own work, being able to go grocery shopping together, being able to take a stroll outside together… many plans have been put on hold just because we are not cohabiting and cannot do them just yet. Within the next year I plan on putting our LDR to rest! I’m sure it will pop up again over the years, but hopefully it will be less often (and certainly a minority of our time).

Are you in a long distance relationship too? What challenges do you find and how do you cope?

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