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Long Distance Relationship
I've always liked to read love stories, especially those which end happily. But life isn't always great. It has slopes, significant slopes, which we can only go through with hope. Here I'd like to share my story, which hasn't yet any ending, because life still goes on and I'm still hoping.
After the last lesson that day, I came back to the dormitory room I was staying at during my college years. I put down my bag and turned on my computer. I changed my t-shirt and jeans into more comfortable clothes. The college and dormitory which I was staying at is located at the edge of the town. To go to a real "civilization", we had to go by train for at least 2 hours. Therefore, having the free unlimited internet access was such a blessing for our college life. Including me. I checked my e-mail and looked through my studies without any motivation.
Then I browsed through some websites and as usual, browsed for new friends randomly by icq. I like getting to know new people, chatting with them and keeping in contact with them as well. But mostly I was interested to the people from Germany. This has some reasons. Back in my high school, my best friend was learning German because she wanted to continue her study in Germany. Then she taught me some of this very difficult language, but I liked it somehow, talking in a language that nobody understood. So when my best friend and I were separated because we continued our studies in different countries, I came with my own initiative to learn it from the real natives. I contacted some Germans through ICQ and got to learn from them.
At this very evening, I looked through the users profiles and lazily skipping one by one because none of them interested me. Until I came to one long description of one user which caught my eye. This German seems to have a good English. He wrote that he likes lots of things, but nothing filthy or porn like most of the other internet users I met. I contacted him with a simple, "Hi."
After a while, he replied, "Hi."
His reply was a bit disappointing but nevertheless sweet, "Sorry, I have to go now, but I'll put you in my contact list. Okay?" And so he did. The message he sent to ask for my authorization was: "For tomorrow and many other times." This sentence was so sweet that I had to smile reading it. That time, I thought to myself, this guy can't be real. He seems to be a nice guy and doesn't have much time to chat with a total stranger. Maybe he only put me in his contact list and ignore me then.
The next day was Saturday. I returned to my very small room again and turned on my computer. I was not in the mood to chat with strangers so I watched an old film, Jerry Mc.Guire. I have to admit, this film was a bit boring but since I didn't have anything else to do that night, I kept on watching it until a message flashed at the bottom of my monitor. It was from this guy yesterday.
"Hi. Remember me?" This question got the same reply.
" Yes, and do you remember me?"
"Of course, I put you in my contact list yesterday" was his reply. So he remembered me. Then we continued chatting for the first time. Joschka (not his real name) told me so many things about himself. He was interested in my home country, which he found very exotic. All black haired, black eyed, brown skinned girls with tube top and simple cloths around the hips, carrying baskets made of hays or rottan in a field. It's so funny how he said many Westerns described the girls from Indonesia. I asked him many questions too about Germany. To be honest, I was quite amazed of how well he wrote in English. The chat went on until 4 a.m and I really had to go to bed finally. We enjoyed our meeting so much and promised silently to meet each other again as soon as possible.
Assignments and tests came like rainy season. It was horrible. Every single day I was showered with home works. I hardly had the time to chat with anybody but I could never refuse to talk with Joschka. He was somehow very understanding, waiting for me while I did my job and was still there when I finally wanted to take a break. He was facing his oral test as well and had to read much from very difficult books. We once discussed a passage from this book which contains 5 lines of words as a sentence. It was fun. We did a good discussion then. Finally reached the common understanding of what could the long sentence meant. During those busy moments, I had problems refusing my friends' chatting invitations. My neighbor said, "Why don't you set your status mode into invisible? Then people won't see you when you're online?"
This was then when I realized that a little seed has been planted in my heart for Joschka. I replied her, "But if I'm not seen online, Joschka won't be able to see me either then. " The solution was very easy then, she taught me how to put Joschka into my visible list. That means he'd be one of all the people whose names I put in my visible list, to see me online although I appear to be offline to the others. When I told him this, Joschka was a bit surprised. He said that it was an honor for him to be included as my "special friends" list. He quickly added me in return, since then we almost always chatted invisibly.
Not long after that I tried to send an sms message to his mobile number from the ICQ. It got through. Then again from my own mobile number. And again it got through. He tried the same thing and since then we do this sms exchanging everyday. Its getting more frequent. Not long after, he suggested a voice chat. I was living in an area where my university was, so the management pretty much took control of what came and out in the server. They put all of those firewall that finally after trying several times, the voice chat didnt work. But since our heart was almost exploded already from hoping to finally hear each others voice, Joschka called. He really called to my mobile. I was surprised. He was probably surprised at his own doing that he stuttered when he was talking to me. It was the shortest phone call ever in our entire life probably, less than 1 min. But then he registered himself to a provider that allowed him to call me from his home phone whenever he wanted.
Since then, we were like addicted to each other. Never thinking of how much the costs were, he kept on calling me like crazy. Really, if we looked back and think of how much money we could have saved for the flight to meet each other, it was such a waste. But I cant say that either. Those moments when I saw no caller id was written on my mobiles LCD, my heart was like pumped out and a big smile was drawn on my face. Those were the most beautiful moments one could ever imagine. We were so deeply in love. Because of the time difference, sometimes he woke me up in the middle of my sleep and I spent 3 hours of talking about the future, the past, the presents, and many other things. I hardly slept back then. My energy was so much, I think it was because I was so truly, madly, deeply, in love.
After 5 months of knowing each other and doing all the things lovers could only do, he told me hes going to visit me. We knew each other only from pictures and voices. Although the L word was said very soon, but we knew it was there. It felt so right. And he confirmed it by finally bought the ticket to fly 10,500 km away to a world hes never been, to meet someone hes never met before. He didnt get the flight to Malaysia so I had to pick him up in Singapore.
I waited. From the board I knew that the flight has landed. But it took him so long to show up. I was wondering myself whether he was lying. He could be a psycho, sending someone elses picture and show up being very scary and all. But after almost an hour, I saw him. And I can never forget the moment when we finally looked at each others eyes and can hear ourselves whispering the others name. The next second, the hug felt like weve had always hugged. The closeness felt as if we have had shared it for our whole life. Everything felt so right. His arms on shoulder, his palm in my hand, his fingers on my hair, his chest on my breast, his kiss on my lips, everything was beautiful. We spent the whole night just wandering along, got to know each other better, until midnight. All shops are closed so we sat on a bench and talked. Had our first kiss that very night, followed by thousands of kisses the times after.
He spent 11 days there. It was a good 11 days. We loved talking to each other. So many things to talk about and shared. And it was so amazing knowing the voice on the phone or the words on the monitor could feels so warm and tender. We knew right away that we clicked.
I saw him again to Singapore at the end of the holiday. I never imagined how sad a goodbye could be. I promised myself I didnt want to cry, and I dont really like those scenes, when people are saying goodbye with tears that they cant really say anything any longer. And I did it. At that very day, Joschka held me and he cried. He said that he couldnt live without me any longer. I felt the same, but not opened enough to cry. I stroked his hair and kissed him. Then we said goodbye. So I went on the train back to my little room, alone, still as strong as ever. It was 7 hours of journey and I just didnt feel anything. I thought of how he was in the plane, even longer hours but thats it. As I turned off my light that night, I started to feel very lonely. I lost my mobile a few days before that day so I couldnt send him any sms. But he was still on the plane anyway. I cried. In my room, alone.
It was sad, but at least we know that we have something we didnt want to let go. Even after that meeting, we knew what we had. Our relationship moved into something deeper, physically and emotionally. The phone calls didnt stop. We worked our best to make every second mattered. I went on with my study, he went on with his and his work too. Until the third months of our separation, we didnt know when we were going to meet again. But then, again another hope was rising and he told me he could visit me again on September the next year. And so it happened, we waited for a year, a full whole year. I finished my study and earned my degree, but stayed in Malaysia to look for a job. So I got out from my dormitory room and found myself an apartment in the city. Again, began the countdown with anticipation.
A year later, 1st September 2002, I picked him up again in the Changi airport. The time we met, we hugged and kissed. I brought him to my apartment and we spent the whole 1 month together. Really 24/7. We made this trip to Thailand and stayed there for a week. We went to places we never went to. Beaches, mountains, cities, villages. We met people on the way, experiences at new places, and shared so many more precious things. He accompanied me getting my result, and was happy for me that I got higher mark than what I expected. It was the best, most beautiful, unforgettable holiday ever. I had never made experiences like that myself with my other friends so it was really my first time. We didnt plan the journey at all. We just went. When we arrived at the place only then we looked for the place to stay. It was fun and very exciting. But again, after the whole month we had to say goodbye again. It was harder than the first time. Because after spending time very intimately those whole month, the next second we were already alone again. I couldnt bear this and moved back to my country after 2 weeks. I couldnt stand being in the lonely apartment. It felt even worse because I just moved to the new apartment for 2 days before Joschka came and shared living in it. So everywhere reminded me of him.
Then I returned to my family and live with them again. I was accepted to work in a private company in my city and began my new life. On March 2003 I had to go back to Malaysia to attend my graduation ceremony with my mother and my aunt. We stayed in the hotel which I once stayed with Joschka and we walked through the places where I once was there with him too. It was so hard to bear. At very late night I called him and cried because I missed him. It was especially hard being in those places without him. Those places belong to us, not to me alone.
But then I walked through the days again, as strong as can be. Around July 2003, Joschka got an internship from this company and was sent to Austria. Three months after that, he went to Australia and has been staying there until now. On March hes going back to Germany. It was something we were looking forward to because we thought Australia is a lot nearer. He visited me again last December for 2 weeks and finally met my family. It was such a tiring visit because everybody who knows me heard about this and was excited to see him. We had to meet so many people which are important too. But it all turned out well, everybody likes him. We did another tour to a beautiful city in Java. And back in my city, everybody asks for a date, when well finally send an invitation for the wedding day.
Now were on our own again but we have all the plans on mind. Next March is going to be our 3rd year of being together. I will visit him on November this year. Next year when hes finished with his study, well know better what to work on. But I know, we wont give up struggling. Weve seen too much, felt too much, been through so much, hoped for much, and dreamed so much. A long distance relationship is not only about the distance. Its about the persistence. Its about the will to keep what you need or the need to keep what you will.
To my Joschka, I only know that I want to plant rose and cucumber with you. Ich moechte kein Leben ohne Dich.
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