Oh no! I’m THAT kind of girl

Sightseeing at the cliffs
Out and about

You know the type. We’ve all had a friend who upon finding a new love disappears from sight.

That’s what’s happened to me with this blog since mi novio arrived, and I understand the feelings of neglect the blog must be having. However, I don’t want to be that girl, so I apologise to all and sundry for my disappearance…and want to try and make up for it.

The arrival of mi novio was exciting, surreal and a little strange. For the first couple of days we looked at each other in a kind of “are you really here next to me, in person?” way. It was a bizarre experience to move our relationship back into that face-to-face variety after it had grown so much via Skype, but after day 3 we finally believed that yes, we were really together again.

The past couple of months has been a learning curve for us both with things like his level of English (not as high as I’d thought), my normal life stressing (exacerbated by moving) and my desire that he have a most amazing experience here (while he’s happy to study English and spend time pottering around with my family).

But things are all good.

I am excited about the move to Colombia. I’m happy that mi novio gets along with my family very well (even to the point of being enthusiastic Dad’s vintage machinery interest) and I’m loving spending time with my family.

Meanwhile all the sorting of affairs in order to move to another country for an indefinite timeframe is taking up brainpower and hours. There’s new bank accounts with fee-free international transactions to find and open, old bank accounts to close, superannuation funds to consolidate, copies of birth certificates to get, documents to be witnessed, possessions to be sold, given away, thrown out or stored and, most importantly, the decision on what to take with me. And that’s not the half of it.

It’s quite daunting, but I guess that’s to be expected when you are moving countries and don’t know when you’ll be back (if ever). But I’m not the first person to move overseas, and in all this, I can’t help but feel for those who don’t have the time or ability to collect the documents, pack up possessions and prepare themselves for a move to a foreign country.

He arrives tomorrow!


Mi novio arrives tomorrow!

After 186 days apart, it’s only one more sleep until we get to throw our arms around each other.

Everything is ready for his arrival. The place is tidy and I’ve baked him a chocolate love cake (and also a lemon tart). Now all that remains is for me to calm my nerves.

As of tomorrow, in less than 12 hours, everything is going to change. This is why marriage, particularly that of the type where people don’t live together (or even have sleepovers) before getting married, is such a big deal. It is a massive life change and it’s not without its stresses. I can see why people get cold feet when that little change-resistant, pessimistic voice starts getting in your ear. But the most important thing is to keep looking forward and trust your decisions that have led to this point. Change is exciting!

Mi novio is finally going to be on my territory and I’m anxious about how that will go. Will he like it? Will he feel comfortable enough here in order to one day come back here to live? Will he like the person I am here, in my home environment?

I guess all that will be answered soon, after I greet him at the airport with a massive public display of affection and we start the next phase of our lives, the one where we live together – in the same country – and we talk face to face instead of on Skype.


A long distance love affair

I last saw mi novio in person five months ago.

I jumped on a plane leaving my heart in his hands in Colombia. I didn’t have an exact date as to when I would next see the love of my life, but every confidence that it would happen and we would overcome any challenges that distance imposes on a new relationship. We had made plans to be together, and I knew returning to Australia was just a short-term pain for a long-term gain.

I had spent the last couple of weeks we had together in an emotional frenzy. All at once I was glad to be with him and yet missing him already for the time we would spend apart. I feel like I cried more times in those weeks than I had in my entire life. (And still he wanted to be with me!) Our last day together was strange and stressful as the cable guys arrived to install internet access to his house so we could Skype each other, a blessing that cannot be underestimated in a long distance relationship of any sort.

I look back on the past five months with the satisfaction of knowing there is only one more month to go until we are together again in person. It has been like the five-day trek to Ciudad Perdida where we met, only elongated. There have been tough climbs to reach the top, exhausted with the effort, but happy that once reached, the terrain would change again to be easier. You marvel at the magnificent scenery and pause to take in the incredible views. Then unexpectedly, the difficult and treacherous passages would appear again and require delicate maneuvering to pass the obstacles. Heavy rains would come and make the path even more treacherous, making it slippery and muddy so you had to step with care so as not to go sliding down the mountain. But the jewel, the reason for the hike is reached, and it is beautiful and rewarding and a very happy moment. I’m looking forward to that jewel moment in just one more month. I’m nearly there!

I commented to a work colleague that one of the unsettling things about being in a long distance relationship is that you don’t know how you are going to feel about the situation at any given time. One morning I could waltz into work, happy for having spoken to mi novio and feeling comfortable in our situation and then by lunchtime I could be feeling an ache in my heart because he’s not physically present and I can’t go home to a normal life, just to a Skype screen. There is no rhyme or reason for this see-sawing. There’s nothing he’s doing or saying that causes me grief or irritation, it’s just a giant Wheel of Fortune spinner whirring away bringing the good and bad feelings at random.

In a moment of clear headspace I had an insightful conversation with myself. It went something like this.

Inner Voice: So Camille, where do you really want to be?

“In Colombia with mi novio.”

IV: Then why aren’t you there now?

“Because I didn’t have the money to go back straight away after my commitments back here.”

IV: But you’ve already met those commitments, so what are you still doing here?

“It’s really important for me that mi novio comes here to meet my family and friends and find out where I’m from before I move to Colombia indefinitely.”

IV: So?

“Money is a factor, you know how much the airfares are. And I need to have money to buy things for my new home in Colombia.”

IV: When has money ever really stopped you before?

“Yes but it also takes time for mi novio to get a tourist visa, so I’m working in a temporary job and dealing with the time apart from him so I can have it all.”

IV: Okay then, appreciate the journey because you will get there. Stop feeling hard done by, because this is your choice.

My inner voice is right of course. I need to enjoy the journey, enjoy the time I get to spend with just me before it is the two of us and appreciate that distance is making our relationship stronger.

Are you in, or have been in, a long distance relationship? How are you coping or did you cope with the distance?