The story of our relationship
Well, I, Graziella, will begin telling how everything started. It's clear all will be written here is focused under my point of view and, because of this, additional comments or contrary ones will be done by Thomas and duly detached.
Everything started when my friend Ronaldo, who already knew ICQ, tried to persuade me to get to know this program. I asked him for what such program could be useful, and he said me that it was really good for talking with our friends all at the same time in a chat. Then I didn't feel so interested and I said to him that this would be too tedious and flat. If we maybe would feel the need to talk with our friends, we could do this in person or by phone. The time passed until one day I decided to accept Ronaldo's proposal and try the program. At the early beginning we chatted between us. Until the day that showed up a message of an American girl. I got astonished. What would this be? I asked her then how she had found me out, but I was so surprised and curious that I guess I scared her away. So this was the starting of one of the phases of my life: the one from ICQ. My new-rouse curiosity took me to discover how that American had found me out and from that day on my chatting-freak began. For me, it was really a fun once it was a way of training my English and also of getting to know other cultures and distract myself. I even chatted with 5 persons at the same time! I got really addicted!
And in one of these days when I was 'hunting' people in ICQ random, I met Thomas. As I lost my data from ICQ later on, I've never known which date was this. Unlike many men and me either, Thomas has a good memory for dates and he believes that this date is 10th November 1998. Well, I believe him! J
At that time he was passing for a difficult phase of his life because of a non-corresponding love and, see how the things are, I got a little bit sick of this and I even had deleted him from my list. How life is unpredictable! After a love crisis I've passed, Thomas called again one day to talk and since then we didn't stop talking anymore.
When we started to feel that there was a different feeling between us, a wave of insecurity and quarrels also began. We argued really much and, analyzing later on all these moments we passed, we realized that all this was fear; fear of feeling something for someone we have never met in person, fear of hurting ourselves, fear of feeding a relationship that maybe couldn't prosper, especially because of the distance. But we were able to fight against some of these fears time after time and, in 6th March 1999, we accepted that we had fell in love for each other.
Everything developed really amazing and fast. Even this way I was the most insecure of we both. I distrusted everything could be a lie and I would hurt myself. Thomas, always optimistic, faced all this in a natural way. At that time I started entering in a crisis with myself. I was really afraid of getting disappointed, especially because I was always linked to the appearances. As everything couldn't continue like that for me, I felt that I needed to see him in person and solve all this deadlock. And then Ronaldo, who always had the wish to travel around Europe, accepted to travel with me to there in July. This was really the best thing that could have happened. In 9th July 1999, there were Ronaldo and I waiting for Thomas in a bus station in Berlin.
I guess it's really difficult to be able to express in words all the avalanche of feelings and thoughts inside me that moment. I will try to tell here my overview about instant. As Ronaldo and I didn't know in which platform Thomas would arrive and as I had much misgiving, anguish and fear of getting disappointed, I asked for Ronaldo if we couldn't sit on a bench from which we could have a nice general sight of all platforms so that we could see Thomas first than the opposite happens. We saw then many buses' arrivals, when arrived one that Ronaldo commented he had seen a guy with flowers in the hands and maybe he could be Thomas. Wow! What an anguish I was feeling when I realized that the moment of we finally meeting in person was close to happen! And then a guy of 2 meters high with orange colored flowers in hands came in our direction. Being honest, and maybe this was really selfish and despicable of my side, I didn't like so much that flowers and I got a little bit ashamed. I regret myself that I have felt this when I was thinking back later on about this again... And then we gave an ashamed hug and we all continued walking...
We chatted while we waited for Ronaldo's cousin arriving so that Thomas and I could go out a little bit for talking and walking. We felt more free to talk with each other and now I can confess that I felt something stronger for him, a wish of getting closer to him and even touch him while I observed him talking... After hours of waiting Thomas and I went out, but I guess we made a big mistake. We took the keys of the apartment and left Ronaldo locked inside it because we couldn't leave the apartment completely unlocked and we thought Ronaldo's cousin wouldn't take time anymore for arriving. Well, I was rebuked really hard by his cousin. I got sad because we couldn't avoid such mistake happening. But now I will tell what happened while we were walking though the city. Berlin is a really beautiful and charming city. We arrived then at the square in front of the town hall and while we were walking, I felt the wish that we could sit for a while on one of those benches and talk one looking to the other, face to face. I always was shy and full of misgivings concerning take the initiative, but that moment came up to my mind the following analysis: 'You came from so far just to seeing him and now that you really feel that you have an interest for him and you aren't disappointed as you had thought, you won't do anything? Don't waste time! Enjoy each moment you can get to not regret later on!' And this was what I did. J I got some courage and invited him to sit together. I was even more shameless and I asked if I could touch his hand. Since the first moment I've seen his hands I've found them so beautiful. I guess because of my acts he got also courage to ask for a hug. We hugged and I didn't hesitate to give a big kiss on his mouth anymore! J I guess it was the really right decision I've ever done in my life... Something that was only virtual became real then.
That July ninth has become the most marked date in our relationship. I will never forget that day. It was a really pleasant summer night. That so clear firmament , without stars but with endless and defined color. I still remember how bright was the Town Hall tower clock, with its shine passing through the trees' leaves. And there we were in the following year recalling our first meeting. I guess I developed an affection for that place, and I am sure each new visit will be a new emotion.
Most of our crises are related to the distance and, from my side, also the dubiousness about establishing ourselves in a near future as well as the momentary immobility. The lack of living closer always hurts. The dissatisfaction and even the revolt against the situation we have to pass surely makes the relationship difficult. It just doesn't destroy it because of love and conviction knowing that one completes the other and that we will overcome the barriers. It's really a patience test and I can even compare it with a Chinese torture. J
A question someone did to me one day: The lack of body contact for a significative period of time due to the distance doesn't make the relationship incomplete, opening space for other adventures? This is the first remark everybody does... I consider that it range from case to case. There are people that can't wait, don't have patience, lastly, they start a distance relationship but soon they give up because they want someone closer, more real. They can't stand to live like that. I've seen many cases like these ones. In my situation, there is no doubt that we miss closer contact, but as we know that we will meet again, we live intensely each single moment when we are in person. I think this makes us to value even more the importance of being close to each other. Only a hug, how this can make the difference. One day I heard a girl talking about her weekend. She said that it was a pointless weekend once she stayed with her boyfriend watching a movie in front of TV. I start thinking and I said to myself: 'You can't imagine how much this would mean for me. Spending a whole weekend with my boyfriend in person...' What a thing... There are people that have everything around them but they are dissatisfied. They don't value the little things of life that sometimes can make us so happy.
So it's this. I think when we love and beyond this we trust, there is no space in your heart for other adventures. Especially because your mind is bound to the other person, the one who you love, the one with whom you really would like to be. Then this kind of adventure becomes too small, too stingy, it can't bring any pleasure...
Since I met Thomas by Internet the affinity was so intense that I decided to do a German course right away after it. Nowadays I study by myself once I got disappointed with the German courses I experienced. Or they take time as much as they can so that you spend more money or they follow strictly what is written in the book. Thus, I decided that if it was to follow a book, I could study by myself. I was even criticized when I took an evalutation test in a renowed German school when I said that I was trying to be a self-taught person. The German started telling me that women don't do the things without a special reason. My answer was: 'For everything in life we need motivation. I've never thought all my life long that I would study the German language, but I am here. I am giving my best in this.' People sometimes mislead themselves in the moment they think they don't want to take advantage on the things. Whether money, or love, or happiness, there is always the interest in get something.
For those people that want to learn German, I don't advise to be a self-taught person since the early beginning. It's fundamental the help of the teacher in the beginning of the course. Learning the pronounciation, the first words, understanding the sentences formation. Sure I have difficulties in establishing conversations as well as listening to the language. Many times I know the word but when someone repeats it to me my brain can't connect the word and its sound. But I think that in order to get really used to the language, only listening to it in daily life.
I am finishing the German basic course and I am with a step on the intermediary. Thomas' family got really surprised during my last visit once I talked much with them. Well, for someone that didn't speak a single word in German in the first visit and everything was translated by Thomas, I think that a sentence makes a big difference. J But time after time I have my progress...
Our biggest challenge now is to find a way to stay together. Thomas has more three years of faculty. I am closing my faculty this year and I am searching the best way to harmonize professional carreer with emotional life. So, for those people that thought I was in Germany, I am not! J I am sure that the only alternative for us in this moment is that I go to Germany. But I won't go without having everything well planned and defined before. I don't believe that marriage would be the solution just to be able to get some papers in order to stay in the country. Marriage is a really important and special stage of someone's life and I don't with to have it arranged by convenience. Sure it wouldn't be convenience because we love each other, but it's not the right moment yet once we are not duly established in life. The better thing it would be my getting a job in Germany. But as not always we get what we want, and have to adapt to each new situation, let's see what happens...