To all the friendships, never finished
When I was 12, my parents decided to live overseas and take me with them. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not angry at them anymore for this. But for a long time I was.
And they didn’t take me to Europe or England, or America. They took me to Japan. A place I had studied for 5 years and was actually pretty sick of. While history and culture fascinates me, Asian culture has never interested me like European. It’s probably all the different food (I’m Fussy).
Now of course, when I was over there, I wrote letter, after letter to all my friends back home in Rockhampton (Queensland). One of them even came to visit me. It was kind of great.
But one by one, someone stopped writing back. And I’d bet 9/10 times it was the other person. And I’ll let you in on a secret. I don’t mind. Because here’s how it goes when you live in another country where it’s difficult to foster long lasting relationships (like when you don’t speak the language very well) you get emotionally stretched. You have to send half your emotions back home, to your friends, your family, your partner. (maybe, not me) You’re invested back there as much as you are in your foreign country. And it’s exhausting. Skype and Facebook messenger can only do so much! (Particularly when you’re 12) So someone has to stop. and why would it be you? Your family’s back there anyway what’s one more person? One more friend?
It’s like being in two different places.
With you, over there, and with me, over here.
We both want it to work, I know that for certain,
but you don’t have to survive off scraps of emotion, I do.
a ten minute, twenty minute, two hour phone call, it’s just not the same.
I can text, talk or sign and it’s still not the same.
I’m coming back, but it’s like you can’t wait.
You’re being sped along the track of your life,
while I’m still on the treadmill.
Grinding out hours and hours of work,
with little but sweat to show for it.
We’re both doing the same work, and it’s still not the same.
I can make lasting connections over here,
just like you can over there.
But with one difference. I’m leaving, I know I am.
Then there’s just more long distance.
Now I’m watching you get engaged.
A thing for which I am so happy, and yet.
I can’t help but feel bitter.
It should be me alongside you, getting excited
Getting the first phone call,
being in the wedding party.
But I won’t be, because we haven’t spoken for months
Because long distance sucks,
and when you don’t have to, you don’t.
Even if you want to.
Get Reading. Get Travelling.