So for those who don't know, my boyfriend is in the United States Army. I am so extremely proud of what he's doing and the man he is becoming, but he has been gone for 2 and a half months now. It has been the longest 2 and a half months of my life. But I have learned a great deal from this time in my life.
June 13, 2017. This was the day Marquis left for his basic training. I had been dreading this day for months... over a year actually. And it had come. There was nothing I could have done to prepare me for the amount of sadness I felt from being apart from my best friend. The first few days were terrible. Although I did not stay in bed, cry, and eat my feelings, I sure did feel like it. As days turned into weeks and weeks into months I found that the pain from his absence was getting less painful. I found myself drifting away though, and that scared me. The only communication we have in the time he has been gone is what we communicate through hand written letters that take 5 days to get to each other and another 5 days to get a response. Talk about a strain on the relationship!? It was almost to the point where it didn't feel like I was actually in a relationship anymore.
Yes, I know how terrible that sounds. I, myself, hate that I even felt that way. Because I love Marquis and wouldn't trade him for the world. But that didn't change the fact that his absence was effecting me and effecting us. The only thing I can compare it to is when you end a relationship. It's so hard at first, but over time you heal and learn to live your life without them. And that's what I had been doing for months. I had learned to live without him.
And here I thought that "the absence makes the heart grow fonder." But why wasn't I growing fonder?! Was there something wrong with me? How could I be such a terrible person?! I let those fears and doubts consume my thoughts leading up to when I would finally see M again.
September 26, 2017. It was finally time for "Family Day" at Ft. Benning for battalion 2-19. So I made the 10 hour drive south to finally see his face. The whole time worried of what the first moments together would be like. Would I be happy? Would I still feel the same connection we had before? Would things go back to the way they were? Satan was filling my head with these terrible thoughts and fears. It was so hard for me to find joy. So I prayed. I'd been praying but this time I REALLY prayed. I prayed that God would give me clarity. And that, although I already knew God gave M to me, I would finally find peace again.
So there I was sitting and waiting at the Pomeroy Field watching platoon 1 and 4 do their military movement drills. Only a couple more minutes until it was time for platoon 2 and 3 to do their movement drills. As platoon 1 and 4 finally ran off the field, I waited for the drill sergeants call... There it was. His platoon was finally running onto the field. I found myself searching the many faces for a darkened, familiar face.
There he was. I finally saw M. A smile immediately came across my face and peace instantly washed over me. The fear and doubts were gone and were replaced with love and certainty. God had once again answered my prayers. As I sat and watched his every move all I could think about was how I couldn't wait to see him face to face.
His platoon and the 3rd platoon ran off the field in preparation for the drill sergeants final call to release them for family day. His call finally came and over a hundred guys came running back onto the field, all looking for their family and loved ones. As each young man found his family, immediate tears filled their eyes. As I looked across the field, tears filled my eyes as I watched each private break their emotionless facade from just minutes before. They were now filled with love and an overflowing of emotion. When I turned around I finally saw the face that I drove hundreds of miles to see.
Private first class Humphrey was standing right there in front of me. All I could do was just smile and stare. We just looked at each other for what seemed like minutes, until M pulled me in for the best hug I have ever had. The rest of the weekend flew by. It was filled with many laughs, kisses, and an endless amount of love for each other.
As our time was coming to an end, I realized that I wasn't feeling any fear for the time we had left apart. This time I knew that what we had was strong enough to make it. I also knew that no matter how unconnected we may feel, nothing could take away the bond we had. God had blessed me with M and our time together wasn't over. Not even close. I fought back tears as I hugged him goodbye. Looking into his eyes I knew that I had nothing to worry about.
We only have 4 more weeks apart. Then we can pick back up where we left off. But not exactly where we left off. This time we will be stronger than ever before. Absence truly does make the heart grow fonder. It's only when you have them back that you see the growth.
I wouldn't wish a long distance relationship on anyone. But if it's something that you have to experience I pray that you rely on God to see you through it. M and I both couldn't have done it with out Him. "With God ALL things are possible." (Philippians 4:13) Although we have almost made it through this part of our journey together, we still have many more adventures coming our way. As long as God stays number 1 in our relationship I know we will make it through anything.
Always keep God first in your relationship and everything else will fall into place! I promise. Remember WITH God all things are possible. He will always see you through.