He will call you. You won’t have to remind him that you’re still alive and breathing. It won’t be a question of if, but rather a matter of certainty, knowing that eventually, he’ll pick up the phone and dial you because he hasn’t heard your voice in a day, or an hour, or a week, and he just can’t take it anymore.
He wants to talk. You see his name on your phone and your heart stops, knowing that no matter how many miles are between you, for just a minute or an hour or five, you’re together, if only through a handset. There is no doubt. The conversation is fluid and you can breathe a little easier hearing his voice. As the conversation drifts on and you run through what’s been going on in each other’s week, your eyelids begin to get heavy. This is security. This is home.
This is love.
You breathe deeper, lower your guard a little. Laugh a little longer than you should at Dad jokes that aren’t actually that funny, saying you’re just tired, when in reality maybe you’re a little love drunk. The world spins a little slower and you drift off easily, knowing that your other half is there, somewhere, on the other side, also easing into their evening and contemplating what life will be like when you’re together, at last, for good. There will be a time when the miles aren’t mitigated by a phone call; you can press your body into theirs, not using words at all.
In. Out. Heaviness.
Thoughts drift to what being in love for the first time felt like at fifteen. Everything that you ever lost comes back to you all at once. It was falling asleep next to someone warm who would move high-school-sized mountains for you when they rose. It was crying your way through some lame argument by your locker, realizing how much you love this human who still thinks you’re beautiful with tears running down your face.
It’s eleven years later and I haven’t felt like this since. I’m glued to my phone, wishing I was glued to your side. How do you do this to me? How, states away, does one create such a pull that I find myself booking flights at 3 a.m. to see you for 36 hours? Holding you in the palm of my hand, hearing your voice, there is a feeling of completion — this is it. I have found my person. So, what’s next for us? And the ‘us’ is so key.
More deep breaths, slower now.
Tonight, let us lay here on mismatched duvet covers and say nonsensical things until we fall asleep, dreaming of days ahead. Let’s talk about the roads and shitty drivers and the weather, all of our day-to-day happenings. It is in these small spaces, these small conversations, these glimpses into each others’ realities, that I fell in love with you in the first place.
Falling in love with someone else’s mundane day-to-day activities, recognizing the beauty in their carefully-crafted word choices, imagining how the words form on their lips as they whisper into the phone, somewhere, on some duvet cover, a thousand miles away.
This is it, your 21st century romance.