For about seven years of our friendship, Russ and I lived on opposite ends of California. Save for the one summer after we met when we spent every weekend together, Russ and I came face to face maybe twice a year for about an hour or two at a time. Even after moving to Malawi, we saw each other just as often as we had when we lived in the same state.
After I quit my job and went back to Africa, I thought we had cheated the system. Stopped the cycle. Beat the game. We spent 24 hours a day together for 30 days in a row – more time than we had cumulatively spent together in the entire near decade we had known each other. And even when we returned home, he was only 30 minutes away. Hopes were high.
Unfortunately, tortured distance seems to be our thing.
With Russ in LA and once a month visits in my future, my brain is in full crisis rationalization mode. For those of you that are unfamiliar with crisis rationalization, it’s essentially the opposite of rational rationalization. As an example: After watching The Lion King in 3D over the weekend (which everyone should go do immediately), my crisis rationalization convinced me that we should both just move back to Africa. That would be way easier than continuing this long distance nonsense right? Plus, we’d be together just like we were in Malawi and it’s really pretty. Win-win! These are real thoughts that I have. Real thoughts that Russ has to listen to and will even entertain because he’s the nicest boy of all time.
Despite the appeal of a simpler life in an African village, I’m trying to come to terms with the fact that I might have to…gasp…be patient…and let this long distance thing work itself out in a practical manner. After all, a 45 minute plane flight is far better than the 36+ hours it takes to get to Malawi.
But for now, I’m going to finish this container of Oreos that someone forced me to bring home (you know who you are) and reflect on the time when Russ was stuck with me constantly and was instructed to never be more than 10 feet away from me.
“If you’re ever more than 10 feet away from me, I’ll be running towards you.”
– The nicest boy of all time