***I am making this an ongoing post because I am not quite ready to hit "publish" and allow the world to see it and, as far as I can tell, I am not just going to have one, gigantic moment when it all hits me. It's going to be a series of little events that make me realize what a big change I am going through. These posts aren't well-written or even well-thought-out. They are just me, expressing my feelings, so read them or don't. I just needed somewhere to vent.***
July 28, 2010 at 3:02am
I think it finally hit me tonight. I felt emotions that I never expected to feel and it was all triggered by something that caught me off guard.
This isn't news to anyone, especially myself. I have made all of the proper arrangements regarding classes, and housing, and paperwork, etc., etc. I have told all of the people I needed to tell, and most of them were difficult conversations, but I was doing okay. I had cried about it and come to terms with the fact that I am indeed scared to be starting over somewhere new halfway through my college career, but I was okay.
Honestly, I kind of figured that it all hadn't hit me yet. I was just waiting for the inevitable moment, and, I think, it finally came.
I've talked about my boyfriend, Tom, before (here and here and here, as well as several other times), and the truth is, he really is my best friend. We have a great, healthy relationship (at least I tend to think so) and we are very happy together. Tomorrow, technically today, is his twenty-first birthday. I knew I wouldn't be there to celebrate on his actual birthday, only because we talked about it and decided that me going up to Missouri on Thursday and staying until Tuesday night would maximize our time together and fit it into the time he was able to take off from work. It makes perfect sense to me and, even though I am bummed to be missing his real birthday, we are getting to spend five full days (and then some) together. I am so excited to see him! I absolutely cannot wait!
So, being the awesome girlfriend that I am, I called him tonight right at midnight to be the first to wish him a happy birthday! The call went to voicemail, but he quickly called me back and we chatted for a minute. He was at a bar with his roommates buying his first legal drink at midnight, as he should have been! You only turn twenty-one once, so you have to live it up! He asked if he could call me back when he got home and I told him to do that and to enjoy himself. As soon as we hung up, my heart sunk and the tears started flowing.
Tom celebrated his twenty-first birthday tonight and I wasn't there. I don't mean this in an "I don't want you drunk and out at bars when I'm halfway across the country" kind of way, mostly because I trust him with all of my heart. I mean it in a "you only turn twenty-one once, and I'm missing it" kind of way. It's true. I am missing Tom's birthday.
So many things flashed through my mind, some more reasonable than others, but I was very upset by all of this. The first thing that got to me was that his friends were there celebrating with him at that very moment and all I could offer was a voice mail of me singing "Happy Birthday" to him. I was so glad he was out celebrating with friends! That's how it should be, but I couldn't get past the fact that I was not there. Tonight was a small celebration with just two of his roommates/friends, but there is another celebration happening tomorrow night. I don't know how much bigger it will be, but there is a formal plan and it's happening. I'm a big fan of making birthdays a big deal, so I am thrilled that he's getting so much attention! I just can't help feeling so sad that I was not and will not be there. I know I've said it a million times already, but I'm missing both celebrations, and therefore am not able to share this special day(s) with my boyfriend of a year and a half.
The truth is that I know Tom doesn't think of my absence as something negative. I know he wants me there, or course, but what I mean is that me coming up the day after his birthday just worked better for us because of his work schedule and the number of days he can take off. He's thrilled I'm coming to visit. He has been telling me constantly how excited he is to see me and that me coming to visit is the best birthday present. He's absolutely amazing! I don't know how I got so lucky. I know that this is how he feels, but I feel terrible. I am so looking forward to seeing him. It's been a month since we saw each other last and I want to make this birthday trip the best possible for him. In my eyes, this doesn't make up for not being there tonight and tomorrow. I tend to beat myself up over things. I don't know if you've noticed.
I want to make clear how excited I am for Tom. He is entering his senior year having just turned twenty-one, making him one of the youngest in his group of friends, so this has been a long time coming. I am so excited to celebrate with him and I hope that my absence tonight didn't put a damper on tonight. I want him to enjoy everything fully! At the same time, however, I find myself feeling incredibly selfish about all of this. I'm embarrassed to admit it, but in a way, I hope that he did feel like something was missing tonight because I wasn't there. I know how incredibly selfish that sounds, but that's what I'm feeling at the moment. I'm horrible, I know.
I hope he had so much fun tonight and will do the same tomorrow and that he is looking forward to celebrating when I'm there as much as I am. I can't wait to take him out for a nice, romantic birthday dinner and snap a picture or two of him as the waiter delivers his drink to the table, so that the special moment will be documented. I just can't help but think that I will be snapping those pictures to pretend like it's the first drink he ordered on his own. I realize how melodramatic I'm being right now, but I'm trying to prove a point.
This is what I realized tonight: I'm transferring. We aren't going to be in the same place anymore. We will be in a long-distance relationship. Yes, I knew all of this, but now I really know all of this. We won't be together for the big stuff and I can't do anything to change that. It's just the way it's going to be from now on, at least for the next few years. Of course, we will see each other every break we have and as often as we can, but what about in between? What about on January 30 for our two-year anniversary or on March 10 for my twenty-first birthday? I know holidays aren't everything and I am more than happy to celebrate things when we are together, even if that means celebrating a few weeks early or late. After all, it's not the occasion, it's the person you share it with. What about the other stuff, though? I'm talking about seeing that great new movie together, or going on a date just because, or spending a lazy night in watching movies, ordering pizza, and just goofing off and making each other laugh. What about those things? For me, those are the kinds of things that make up a relationship. It's definitely the small stuff that counts and I am very proud of the comfortable friendship and romance that Tom and I share. We're not going to get to experience a lot of those things together anymore.
I do have to say that through all of this, we have (well, more like he has) been pretty strong. I honestly do believe that we will be okay. We have a strong relationship and are very open with each other. We talk everyday and nothing besides seeing each other every day has changed. In fact, I will venture to say that emotionally, we have never been more in tune and connected. My visit to Columbia a month ago reassured the faith I already had in our relationship and made me realize that now, our time together will be even more special. He's the best person I know and all he has to do is assure me that everything will be okay for me to know that it will be.
Truthfully though, I feel guilty. I have said this to him before, but I honestly know that it's my fault we are in the situation. I am the one who left Mizzou and is transferring, therefore I am the one that put us in the situation. I'm having a hard time, but I'm putting him through it, too. I feel guilty about this and I am reminded every day how amazing he is because he still loves me and wants to make things work despite all of my baggage. I have a lot of it, in case you haven't noticed.
I'm a horrible girlfriend. That pretty much sums all of this up. I'm a horrible girlfriend because I'm missing my boyfriend's birthday.
He called me back tonight after he got home from the bar and filled me in on the evening. It sounded like he had a great time and that his birthday is off to a great start! We talked about our days and what our plans for tomorrow were. He told me that his dad is taking him out to dinner tomorrow night at Shakespeare's in Columbia to celebrate. I love that his dad is coming from STL to be with him, but, again, I'm sad I won't be there. Tom told me that he wishes I could be there to go to dinner with them, which caused the waterworks to start flowing again and forced me to suppress them. Don't get me wrong, I don't usually hold back my emotions from Tom, but it's his birthday and I didn't want to be a party pooper, for lack of a better word. I told Tom to tell his dad how much I wanted to be there. I hope he tells him. I'll remind him a few times tomorrow, just in case. I feel like it's important for not only Tom, but also his family to know how much I care about about him and want to be there on his special day. I didn't want to hang up the phone. It was almost 2:30am and Tom usually gets up around 6:30 in the morning for work, but I had a hard time hanging up.
I know that as soon as I see him (in less than 2 days!!!!!!), it will be like nothing has changed. That's exactly how I felt last time we were together. I want to make his birthday the best one he has ever had and it already seems like it is off to a great start! I know he doesn't feel the same way I do about all of this and he has told me how happy he is that I am able to come and visit him. I'm a lucky girl.
I don't mean to sound like Tom is the only thing that I will miss about Mizzou. I am leaving my best friends and sisters, but this is just where I'm at right now. The experience that made me realize all of this was with Tom. I am anticipating a somewhat similar experience when I start hearing about work week and recruitment from my Phi Mu sisters.
I also realize that I won't be a freaky loner loser living under a rock at UNT. Two of my best friends go there and I want to get involved somehow and do things that I didn't have time to do at Mizzou. I want to make this transition as positive as I can, but at this point, I find myself wanting to just get through it, graduate, and move on with my life. I feel like I will regret this later, so I'm hoping that my outlook changes before it's too late.
This is where I'm at right now. It finally hit me. I realize that I am probably just overreacting. In fact, I know I am overreacting. I am in a wonderful relationship with an amazing guy and I am flying up to Missouri on Thursday to celebrate his twenty-first birthday. In the big scheme of things, the fact that we celebrate one day late will most likely not even be remembered. It's just the principle of it.
August 4, 2010 at 4:16pm
I spent the end of last week and the beginning of this week spending time with Tom and friends in Columbia. It was so great to see everyone! I am so happy that I was able to celebrate Tom's birthday with him! I enjoy our time together so much. I have to say it: we are really good together, and the time that we have together is so special. I loved every minute of being with him, just as I always do.
I was also lucky enough to see a few of my good friends on this trip, too! I spent my good friend Lindsay's birthday with her and a few of our friends. We had a great night laughing and catching up, but right as I was about to leave, it hit me. It hit me that I don't know when I will see them next. I don't know when we will all be hanging out like this again. I told this to Lindsay and we both burst into tears. Now, this outburst may or may not have been helped by everyone being slightly less than sober, but it was so sad. I had a really hard time saying goodbye to everyone. I know we'll all keep in touch and talk frequently and that my good friends will try to make an effort to come see me, just like I will make an effort to see them when I'm in town, but it's not the same. I hate goodbyes. Ugh.
I don't want to skip over my time with Tom, but I will be posting about it in more detail at some point soon. I want to remember everything! Leaving, however, was tough, just like it always is. I hate airports. Really, that's not true, but I do hate Lambert when I am catching a flight home to Dallas. I like being home and love my family, but I'm never ready to say goodbye (which I try to think of as "until next time" rather than "goodbye). I can't even remember how many times Tom has dropped me off at the airport, whether it was for school breaks or quick little trips like this one. It sucks every time. We got to the airport and, just like always, we sat in the car for a few minutes saying goodbye and talking about seeing each other next. Just like always, I started to cry. There's a very good possibility we will be seeing each other in about a month, but I can't help it. It's so hard to leave every single time. I don't think it will get easier. I don't think I want it to get easier, honestly. I feel like if it gets easier, then it means we have gotten used to being apart, and that is most definitely not okay.
I have to say that I feel a million times better about not being there on his actual birthday (see the post above) now that I have seen him and got to spend some time with him. I didn't miss much, to be honest. We celebrated on our own and had a great time and, therefore, I just missed the actual day. I'm not thrilled that I wasn't there, and I'm sure that if I think about it too much I'll be right back where I started, but I'm okay with it and he's always been more than okay with it, so it's done. Moving on...at least I'd like to think so.
August 5, 2010 at 9:27pm
My good friend, sister, and roommate of the past year, Passini, moved into the Phi Mu house today, along with the rest of the Exec. board. Passini and I lived in a four-man room last Fall semester and then lived in a two-man together this past Spring. We had decided to keep the same room and live in it together this Fall semester. Then I found out I wasn't coming back. Passini is living with another friend of mine, Betty, in our room. Well, I guess I can't really call it my room. Passini is there. I'm not. I would have been moving into beloved 503 Kentucky sometime over the next two days, but obviously, I won't be. Betty will be adopting my desk and chair as her own, which is fine. I'm glad someone can use them. Oh, that desk. It's just weird. I won't be living in 304 with Passini. I'm going to miss the Phi Mu house so, so much. I loved living there. There was always someone around to talk to or to goof off with. I'm going to miss having an infinite number of closets search through when I have "absolutely nothing to wear." I'm going to miss walking down the hall to talk (or complain) with my friends Jill and Sherbs. I'm going to miss studying in the kitchen until 3 a.m., believe it or not. I'm going to miss watching Glee cuddled up with my girls on the best couch in all of Greek town. I'm going to miss Whitney's stuff in the corner of my room since she never went home (we never did get you a box, I apologize). I'm going to miss grilled cheese and tomato soup lunches. I'm going to miss Susan, our amazing house mom, who always encouraged Tom to help himself to all the food he wanted (the wonderful cooking staff loved him because he finished all the leftovers) and was always there to talk to. I'm going to miss shower parties, doing crafts in the lovely annex basement, and the magic drawer. I'm going to miss Phi Mu and all of my amazing sisters. I am thinking about all of you during move in and wishing you the most successful recruitment ever. This is our year, ladies! I can really feel it. I wish I was there with all of you.
I'm sure there's more to come, but this is long enough already. I'll keep you posted.
More to come,