Saturday, August 27, 2011

Introducing Alex

I suppose this post is more than eight months overdue. No, I'm not writing about how I should have posted more frequently, or how I have a ton to share in an update. Instead, I want to tell you about a person I met in December (2010), who has become a daily part of my life.

Over the years, I've shared a few stories about friends or roommates of mine who have done great things in life. For a while now, I've wanted to start a blog series honoring some of these people and their accomplishments. While this isn't necessarily the start of said series, I do want to introduce you all (seeing as how I have a huge reader base - not!) to someone who is special to me.

As I said before, I met this person in December, as sort of a last minute social outing before heading home to Louisiana (from grad school in Raleigh, NC) for the Christmas holidays. The meeting was at a Krispy Kreme restaurant with one of my friends and her boyfriend. Sparing several details, the outing turned out to be a bust, and I went home feeling as though it was a sincere waste of time. However, almost nine months later, I look back and think about the irony that this person plays such a large role in my life today. For, on that awkward evening, I met the person who is now my boyfriend - Alex.

A month later, the day after I returned from the Christmas holidays, Alex offered to take me on a date. In fact, he drove over 8 hours (round-trip) to spend only half of that with me. At that point, I knew any guy who would go out of his way to spend this kind of time with boring 'ole me, haaaaaad to be special. And well, I was right. ;)

Anyway, for all you creepers out there, here's the dish!

Alex is 26, he lives in Spartanburg, South Carolina, and works as the Assistant Media Relations Director for the University of South Carolina - Upstate. Originally, Alex is from a small town southeast of Raleigh, which is where he met my friend's boyfriend while interning at Campbell University a few years ago. Currently, Alex is responsible for the stats and media releases for several sports at Upstate, which keeps him busy for at least nine months of the year. (If you're super interested in those details - look him up online, lol.)

Knowing me, and now knowing Alex's situation, by now you've probably figured out that we're doing this whole relationship thing via distance. Fortunately or unfortunately, Alex and I have been friends via distance from the very beginning. As long as I've known him, Alex has lived in South Carolina, and I've lived in Raleigh, Abbeville, or Little Rock...which translates to at least 4 hours of distance between us at all times. I'll be honest, it was tough to work through those decisions about finishing school, accepting jobs, moving, and being apart. However, neither of us really wanted to give up on something that seemed to be such a natural fit, so we've stuck with it.

It's very important to both of us that we maintain our sense of "self," so we try to hold onto friendships and encourage each other to do fun things with others. (This is much more challenging for me right now - having moved to a new area with little time and few friends.) In April, I met Alex's parents, and in July he met mine; family is a crucial piece to this puzzle and we're trying to piece it all together strategically. It's a process that takes time and special attention to detail, so we're working at it as we go.

We try to be creative in our communications and really cherish the time that we do have together. It can be fun to stretch our capacities for creativity, and like the Lady A song ("Just a Kiss") says, we hope it'll "make forever longer" when we are eventually able to move into the next season of our relationship. For now, we try to take it day by day, and I continuously remind myself that many people have be successful at this before, so it is indeed possible.

On a lighter note, I'm headed to Spartanburg next weekend, and I absolutely cannot wait!! By that point, it will have been 7.5 weeks since we've seen one another and just thinking about it almost seems surreal. With that, I'd like to ask that all of you keep us in your thoughts and prayers - we need all the patience, strength, and support that we can get. Thanks, in advance!

...And there he is!