Our Journey: Long Distance Love

Before I was branded Raoul and I dated for two years. For some this is a long time and for others this is short. It took some time for us to get to know one another, work out the kinks and get things right but we finally did. During our first year of dating Raoul came to visit me in Virginia three times.
Then in the second year I went to visit him in The Bahamas three times. 
 There was no big reason. My family made it clear he needed to visit me first and with work schedules and finding chaperones it who could be available, it just worked out that way. Oh yes, chaperones. That may be an ancient word to some but Ra and I take very seriously our belief that God intended for sex to be shared between a husband and a wife only. The only way for us to ensure that is to be chaperoned so were not alone giving ourselves the opportunity to fool around. We’ve both had our share of life experiences and in that we’ve come to feel that life is truly more successful when you do things God’s way. It makes us both so happy to be able to say that we waited and have kept a clean courtship and know that our marriage can be blessed for that. I’m not saying that anyone else will have a doomed marriage if  they didn’t wait but I feel faith is something that should make you feel good about what you’re doing and not make others feel bad about what they’re doing. I have to say though that it would have been a whole lot more difficult for us to abstain if we were not living in two different countries. A whole lot.
If you asked Raoul would probably say I put him through hell. Good advice I’ve gotten says to ensure a successful marriage find a person that fits all your SPIES needs. That’s spiritually, physically, intellectually, emotionally, and sexually. This is not easy to do in any relationship and is nearly impossible when you live in different countries.  I had limited time to observe him in his surroundings, to talk to his family and friends and get a sense of who he really is. Being in a LDR means we don’t have tons of memories hanging out, we don’t have ton’s of pictures together and we haven’t had ton’s of dates. However, it does mean that we have had ton’s of good conversations and are getting very good at communicating. When you have time to talk about everything you can really get to know a person. I can pretty much tell what Ra is feeling or how many beers he’s had just by hearing his voice. My mother is sure I’ll develop brain cancer from constantly having the phone to my face.

When I tell people we are in a LDR they always ask me “How do you do it?” and “Why would you want to do that!?” I can’t really come up wait a good explanation for that. The dating process for us is very difficult. Long distance relationships are not easy, no matter how much technology you have. We rely heavily on the Magic Jack which allows us to talk unlimited from home and manage to webcam a few times. In between we use the cell phone which is very expensive.

One of the rare occasions he allows me to see him on the webcam

 I believe part of what makes us remain close is that we fall asleep on the phone together almost every night since we’ve started dating. Being apart is not something we want to do but when you fall in love with someone you do what you have to. There is a literal pain in my heart when I miss him or have to leave him at the airport. But we know it will all be over soon and this pain is temporary. I know that when we actually live together we’re going to be getting to know each other all over again and that’s actually both exciting and scary.

I don’t think anyone in a good marriage had a smooth journey to get there. I believe that’s just a part of life. Have you ever been in a LDR? How long did you date before you were engaged?

All Photos Personal

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