I watched as my sister struggled to get comfortable on the chair, she was due in a few weeks and I observed her, as we waited for my then 3year old nephew to get his hair cut in the hair salon. As I looked at her I thought about who would I have children to, what my future held for me, because a few months prior, I thought I ‘knew’ what would happened because I had everything planned.
Then LIFE happened…
I was newly single; it was a novelty, a new freedom that gushed from the wound that started as a 7year itch; a beautiful pain, a necessary pain.
I was excited, but I was scared. I had just turned 25, who would I find now?
I was with someone who slid out of my life like a pair of glasses sliding off a perfectly straight nose, and I couldn’t see my future anymore.
But I trusted in the NOW. I didn’t think about what the future would be like, the present was already bright, and distracting me from looking behind or too far ahead.
I was awakened, and everything around me that was once was dull beamed with colours that I had never noticed before.
I watched as my nephew was being served hot chocolate in his throne, a distraction from the terrifying clippers that would soon be cutting away his unruly, child-like hair, like the loss of innocence and in that moment I yearned for my own childhood, a time when no expectation laid upon me
Now, I would be watched to see how I would cope, how would I react, being newly alone.
For the 90th time that day I scanned my social media apps on my phone, the usual ritual of scrolling, like a magician pulling an unending supply of tissues from his pocket.
Within a fraction of a second a curtain had opened a scene on the stage of MY life, because just then, in that moment, my life changed upon giving a photo a ‘like’ on Instagram. The photo stood out to me, because it was of the very salon in which I was sitting. I was curious to see who took the photo.
I didn’t know who he was.
But the photographs he took, what he took the photographs of, were of the small, common things in life, but he made them majestic.
Then I spotted a photo of him. With a sharp jaw-line and virile height he looked convincingly German. My only clue that he was Irish was his collection of Instagram photos of my own city.
“Who is he?” I quietly murmured to myself. I had never seen him before.
Why was I feeling so drawn to him and his photographs?
I was meant to be enjoying my new single life. Surely I couldn’t be showing interest in someone already?
Against the ‘logic’ of my mind, that was often infrequent, I sided with my intuition that I had been neglecting recently.
And so, I ‘followed’ him.
He ‘followed’ me back. The first time he made me smile.
I soon discovered, with the help of Facebook, that whilst he was from my hometown, he actually lived in Germany.
‘Add as Friend?’, you bet.
“Guten Tag”, I messaged him, trying to impress him with my G.C.S.E German.
And so it began.
We messaged every day for two weeks before he suggested ‘Skyping’.
I was not used to this new-age digital romance. I was nervous, unsure of what I would say and what he would think of me.
It rang, doot doot –doot doot- doot de doot doot. He was ‘Skype-calling’ me.
I answered, but didn’t appear in front of the screen until I could see him and get a good look at him. He stared blankly, wondering where I was.
He was wearing red, which made his sparkling blue eyes pierce my computer screen. I was envious of his beautifully arched eyebrows, and his cute ski-slope nose. He was beautiful.
I appeared on the screen to him, smiling and my heart pounding, already knowing that he was something very, very special.
We spoke for hours, completely at ease, enthralled with each other, yet mystified at the fact that we had never seen each other before despite having mutual friends.
He would be in Dublin the following week and he asked if I would meet him.
Of course I would.
“I’m meeting that guy from the internet in Dublin”, I said to my parents.
Having heard me talk about him since the first day I discovered him, they knew that he was the real deal, and I didn’t have to convince my Daddy that he’d have to do a Liam Neeson stunt.
For the 4hour bus journey to Dublin I sat, not moving and not daring to snooze so not to ruin my makeup. My nerves wouldn’t let me sleep anyway.
He told me he would wait at the bus station.
As the bus pulled up I tried to look for him, and I couldn’t see him.
Doubt filtered through.
I stepped off the bus and proceeded to walk, and then I discovered him. He walked out from the shadow of a pillar and dazzled me with a smile.
“Hello” he said to me, as he kissed me on the cheek. A gentleman.
“I have to go to the toilet” was my reply. I casually walked off to the bathrooms until he stopped me to tell me that I would need a Euro to get into the toilets. He gave me the euro.
I checked my reflection in the bathroom mirror, almost ready to ask myself “You’ve never done anything like this before”
I smiled at myself, ready to explore this new discovery.
We walked towards the hotel we were staying at, IN SEPARATE ROOMS, of course. I observed him as we walked. He had a smile that triggered my own smile. His eyes had a soothing effect on me.
I checked in to my room as he had been already staying in the hotel the days before. He would wait for me outside my room whilst I left my bags in and changed my shoes.
I opened the door.
“Oh somebody forgot their…”
Then I realised, the beautiful rose in the vase wasn’t left behind by anybody else, it was there for me.
Him, he had done this.
I looked at him and he stood at the door, looking at the ground and smiling bashfully.
The card on the roses had the lyrics of ‘Guns ‘N’ Roses’ on it, my favourite band, my favourite song, the most beautiful lyrics.
“You did this?” I asked him.
His vibrant eyes and animated smile was his response.
I stood, in awe, at what he had done. The fact that I thought the rose was left behind was evidence that I had never experienced such a surprise before.
I discovered in that moment that he was considerate, kind and I was surely falling in love with him
It’s almost three years since I stood in that hotel room looking at him, incredulous at how I, little old me, was the object of this beautiful man’s affection.
For three years we have been in a long-distance relationship. For the last three year’s we’ve discovered so much about each other. We meet up and travel every three or four weeks. Some day we will be able to spend everyday waking up to each other, but for now, we're still discovering the world.
In Rome, he laughed at my uncontainable excitement upon seeing the Colosseum and quoting the lines from the ‘Gladiator’ movie.
In Barcelona discovered how I considerate he was when he scoured the entire city at an unsociable hour to get me painkillers for my sore ear.
I discovered how funny he was in Australia when after a night out, a group of us sat in McDonald’s at 3am, and having found sunglasses, he sat and gave his best rendition of Stevie Wonder.
I see how he treats my family. I see how he treats me. I see how he loves me. I constantly see, and I constantly discover.
I want to keeping discovering him for the rest of my life...
|Ramsay Street, Melbourne|
|Christmas at home|
|New Year's Eve 2015|
|My nephew, Stephen and I|
|We love our night robes|
|Celebrating my nephew's 1st birthday|
|Sicily, Summer 2016|
|Germany, Summer 2016|