Grow old along with me, the best is yet to be. – Robert Browning
In 1994 .. (That long ago!? omg!) I was poking around on the internet. It was still new to me and my boyfriend at the time told me about IRC (Internet Relay chat). My friend Peggi and I were considering taking a trip to Ireland (Where we were going to get the money I don’t know, amazing how you think it grows on trees when you’re young!) So I decided to join #Ireland on “That IRC thing” to see if anyone could give me some info on where to go, what to see, etc
One of the very first people I spoke to was someone going by the name Mightor. He was extremely friendly and helpful and before long I realized hours had passed while we were talking! Not only was I excited to be talking to someone from so far away (Keep in mind that way back then it was very new to speak to people far away so easily) but I couldn’t believe how much I enjoyed talking to him.
For six years we spoke on the internet, writing letters, postcards, email, and talking on the phone. We would talk about everything from our families, where we live, my boyfriends/his girlfriends.. you name it. We became extremely good friends and always made a point of keeping in touch and having a good old gab whenever we got the chance.
So in June 1999 I was living in Toronto and had just split up with my jerk-ex, Xander was living in Enschede (The Netherlands) on the campus and working. We were talking a lot and decided to finally meet! He was coming to Toronto!
Man was I NERVOUS!!
The minute I saw him step off the plane, I couldn’t even move. When he saw me he smiled and came towards me.. while my feet were still glued firmly to the floor. The first thing he did was scoop me up in his arms, kiss my cheek and whisper “You’re beautiful!”
For the next two weeks we were inseperable, so much so that he decided to extend his trip by another two weeks! We hung out, met up with my friends, talked till all hours of the night. We even drove back to Cape Breton so I could show him my home and my family. We were on the road for three days going to Cape Breton, and four days coming back. I can still see us driving along the Trans Canada singing at the top of our lungs. My family loved him instantly. I’ve never brought a man to them that they took to so quickly. I was in heaven..
Then.. he had to go..
Saying goodbye to him at the airport was one of the most painful things I had to do. I knew he loved me, and I loved him.. but he was going so far away, who knew when we’d see each other again. So many things were going through my mind.. would he get back and realize it wasn’t worth it? Would we try but cave to the distance in the end and give up? Would he meet someone else before I got to be near him again? It was hell .. pure hell. I cried all the time, everything I looked at reminded me of him.. the phone calls, emails, IRC chats and everything we shared as friends didn’t satisfy me anymore. I loved him and I wanted to be with him.
Meanwhile… he was across the pond thinking the very same things. Each conversation was about how we hated being apart, trying to figure out how to be together while still being realistic that we’d only spent a month together in RL. Did we really feel we knew each other enough from our six years of online-friendship, to make up for the short time we were together in real life? Would we be making a mistake to take drastic steps to be together? It was all so confusing, but after much encouragement on his part I agreed to grab life by the balls and move to Europe.. EEEK!!
On August 28th, 1999 I arrived in Amsterdam.. He proposed to me that evening in a beautiful park in the town of Woerden. It was like a fairy tale. We married on May 12, 2000 in Enschede, The Netherlands.