It may be a little foolhardy, but I really don't worry about it. I talk about the "innate good of humanity" on my blog a lot, and I really believe what I say. My mother, among many other people in my life, tells me that I will change my mind one day, that I'll stop being so trusting. I hope that never happens. It is only when you believe in an idea that it can flourish and come to life. I believe that people can be trustworthy, honest, and kind. I believe that my blog can be used solely to make positive connections with others. So far I haven't encountered any problems whatsoever, and my fingers stay crossed that things remain the same.
Also, while I do share the actual names of the people in my life, as well as my own, it is never without their knowledge.
Sarah asked: How do you and Kyle manage to keep your relationship strong despite the long separation that you have been experiencing? My boyfriend and I tried for so long to do the long-distance thing, and in the end we just couldn't do it. After 14 months together, we split up because we just grew apart.
Sarah, this is a tough question to answer. I can't tell you the number of times I have wished there was a guide book to dealing with the distance. Sometimes it is more than frustrating and often enough it makes me miserable, but more often than not the thing that keeps me going is knowing that it is only a temporary situation. This separation is a sort of means to an end. We're journeying toward the same goal, just on two different roads.
Kyle and I have been unique from the start. Our relationship has been one challenge after another, but we have a bond that is indescribable, and we both entered into the relationship knowing that we wanted it to be lasting. That mindset has played a huge role in what has kept us so strong. I love him more than anything else in my life. We put each other first...or at least as "first" as the Army will allow. ;) He is the best part of me. He makes me alive, bold, confident, and more compassionate. He has my whole heart. In the darker days, all of those things help me carry on.
I think the most important thing is to always remember that what I do now, here, alone, is still incorporated into what I have to do for us. Each decision I make is for both of us. Every achievement is to make our life together better. We try to keep lines of communication open, even though it can be difficult with the time difference and our busy schedules. When he calls, whatever I am doing stops. It's isn't just a conversation, it's our only way of preserving our love. Even from so far away my life revolves around his.
...there isn't one secret key to making long distance relationships work. It's strength and patience and a little bit of blind faith, and most importantly, as much love as you can manage. Maybe a little bit is just luck.
I'm sorry to hear that your relationship didn't work out. :( I hope that you both can find happiness elsewhere. Always remember to take the sad experiences in your life and turn them into learning experiences. Everything we do takes us to the place we are meant to be later. Every step makes us stronger.
Bethany asked: What's your general opinion on valentines? What's the best valentines gift (real or imagined) and what's the worst?
I'm not a Valentines Day hater in the least, and this from a girl who never had the cliche bouquet.
I've only had one Valentines Day on which I could receive a gift. Kyle and I were only together for last year's, and before Kyle there wasn't anyone else. But last year he surprised me with my adorable Pluff, and it was probably the best gift he could have chosen. (I'd been walking past that stuffed neopet in WalMart with longing for weeks because I thought I was way too old to be buying toys.)
The only Valentines gift that I can think of that would be absolutely awful would be one that wasn't really for the person who receives it... Like, buying someone your favorite candy instead of theirs, or buying your wife a vacuum. Luckily that's never happened to me. ;)
Amy asked: Where's the sunflower picture quote (at the very bottom of your site) from? I like it.
Amy, the quotation comes from A.S. Byatt's book Possession, but I found it in The Time Traveler's Wife. It's been my favorite since I discovered it in high school. I found the sunflower image at photobucket.com.
Jennifer asked: Where is one place that you never want to move to? and Why?
Jennifer, I don't think I'd mind moving anywhere as long as I wouldn't be moving there alone. I wouldn't particularly like moving somewhere cold though. I do hate the cold.
Miffie asked: What has been your worst partying experience?
Miffie, I honestly haven't had a bad experience. I'm not much of a party girl. Sorry, I'm kind of boring in that respect...
Anonymous bloggers asked the remaining questions:
What is the first thing you think about when you wake up?
It varies. Nine times out of ten I hit the snooze button and fall right back asleep. But today I checked the EKU homepage, discovered that campus was closed because of snow, and did a happy dance of epic proportions. :)
If you could change one thing about your relationship, what would it be?
If you mean something about the inner-workings of our relationship...I wouldn't. I think Kyle and I handle things well. That isn't to say that there aren't rough patches, but there is nothing I feel we cannot overcome.
However, I would kill this distance if I could. It is a constant battle to keep myself from withdrawing from my classes in the middle of the semester and hopping the first plane to Europe. It may be irrational, but don't we all want to do crazy things when we're in love?
What's your favorite color and why?
My favorite color changes very often. At the moment I love teal: the color of summer skies and swimming pools and those wonderful blue raspberry popsicles.
Who do you admire most?
I admire lots of people. I admire my mother for her endless strength. I admire my friends for their ability to make any situation ten times better. I admire my soon-to-be-sister Courtney for proving every day that real love happens. I admire authors like J.K. Rowling and Stephenie Meyer for managing to write such amazing stories while caring for their families. The list is endless, and I don't think I can choose just one. I even admire readers like you who stick around to brighten my day. :)
If you could go back to any moment in your life, what would it be?
I think I would go back to the last time I saw my great-grandmother. It wasn't anything spectacular. We only sat in her living room making polite conversation, but now I wonder what else I could have asked...what other stories she had to tell that I'll never know about.
I know that most people would have guessed that I'd have chosen a time spent with Kyle, but the way I see it, I have my whole life left to live with him. My time with my great-grandmother is over, and I miss that time more than I'd ever imagined I would.
Why do you think you and Kyle ended up together?
I honestly couldn't tell you. Sometimes I think that Kyle and I were "meant" to be together. There are a thousand little things that could have happened that would have kept us apart, but none of them did. The course of events that led up to our being together are like a fragile scaffolding. I feel like if any one thing had been pulled out of the equation we would have come tumbling down.
But really, no matter why we are together, the important thing is that we are. No matter what brought us to this place, we are in it, and we're both glad for it. :)
Thanks to everyone who participated! :)
I hope you all had fantastic Valentines Days.