At the beginning of 2017 I didn’t even know you existed. But before I knew it, you would be cemented in my heart like no one outside my children had ever been.

Looking back, I remember the day we became online friends. Meeting through a social media group full of so many others with stories similar to ours.

There was an instant connection, we both were aware of it before we even had our first virtual hello. You kept showing up in my feed, impossible to ignore and yet what choice did I have?

You lived in a different country for crying out loud. I’d never even been on a plane in my adult life. The thought of living a life of travel was so far off my radar, you may as well have lived on the moon.

Thinking back, I remember Mak saying to me numerous times “there’s 7 billion people in the world, yet you think your perfect person lives here? In this city? In Alberta? I think not” I’m certain she cursed me every time she spoke those words. Nonetheless she was right.

In July it happened. I innocently made a flirtatious comment on one of your selfies and you took the bait that I didn’t even realize I was dangling.

Later that day, your weird way of communicating back was to message me your 120+ song Youtube playlist. You were the oddest most intriguing person I had ever met.

I remember thinking “how could someone so beautiful be such a strange, nerdy person lol” I was hooked. Your intelligence and quirky sense of humour along with your intense eyes and adorable smile were too much for me to resist.

How could this possibly work? You still lived almost 4000km away. I had no interest or intentions of being in a long distance relationship and neither did you. Yet from the moment we had our first FaceTime chat, we both knew that the distance was going to be an obstacle not a road block.

At the end of August, you came to Canada for the first time. I met you at the airport and you ran into my arms and we hugged with the tightest of grips and the knowing that we were never letting go. I remember feeling like the world around us slowed right down in that moment and was witness to the subconscious intentions that were being set in that embrace.

We had 5 blissful days together. Getting to know one another. Touring my city and province. Hanging out. Falling in love. And then it was time to go back to the airport. This time our hug was much more painful. My first time experiencing the heartbreak of airport goodbyes.

The next couple of months were a mix of trials and joys but we found our groove quite easily as an LDR couple. We stayed in touch throughout our days, looking forward to our evening FaceTime ritual. The hardest moments were when we weren’t able to physically be there for one another when a couple of hard things in our lives happened. The day Bo had his seizure I felt your absence tremendously and I know you felt mine earlier in that month as well.

Nevertheless, we support each other amazingly well for any couple even with the distance. Our level of communication is like nothing I’ve experienced before.

After 11 weeks I was finally boarding a plane to come see you. I was terrified but overflowing with excitement. I had never flown in my adult life and I was a nervous wreck. But you were waiting for me at the other end so nothing would’ve stood in my way of getting on that plane.

For 2 weeks we woke up together every morning and fell asleep in each other’s arms every night. I met some of your closest friends and quickly realized why you loved them all so much. I tasted Chipotle and sweet potato casserole for the first time and damn do I miss them now! It’s hard to pick a favourite, but the day we spent at the beach was probably it.

And then it was time for another one of those heart wrenching airport goodbyes. Leaving you that day was harder than I could’ve imagined. 34 days later and I’m still reeling from it.

December was a hard month. Lots of ups and downs. Stressful decisions and painful realizations. Holidays spent apart and still another month until we’re together again. But we made it. Stronger. More bonded. Committed.

It’s January 1st, 29 days until I board a plane again. My countdown is once again making me smile rather than groan. 2018 is going to be one hell of a year, I can already feel it. I’m not sure what it has in store for us, but what I do know is that we’ll be facing it together, and that is something worth celebrating.

Happy New Years Ace. I love you ❤️

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