Distance vs. proximity

She regrets the time when they were apart. When he was 4’300 miles away, the distance protected him. She could write to him every day. He was happy to receive her mails, partly because he was alone in a foreign country but most definitely with the distance he felt safe, he did not need to worry that their relationship could go too far or could progress in a positive way. He had let her feed him with her love daily and he had accepted with a certain pleasure.

The moment they were in the same city again, everything for him became complicated. Or more precisely, his interpretation of how things could happen was complicated and irrational. The way he sees things is from a wrong perspective and angle. He anticipated wrong feelings from her. He still did not get her or understand what she really wanted. From his side, he cogitated for nothing. He was scared even though she did not ask for anything. No more, no less. She was being the same woman, just like the one during his absence. He interpreted everything wrong. A text of her to say good morning, like she used to do it, and suddenly he thought that she wanted to see him. He felt the need to text back and said something useless such as: “I have no time, I have things to do, I have to work”. He forgot that she had a life too and this life without him she had been living for months now. She certainly missed him, everyday, or now and then. But she was always alone and he was never there. She was surrounded with other people and friends. He was simply a shadow of her dreams, or desires or maybe love.

It became too complicated that she was obliged to stop saying hello and simply to stop suggesting anything even simple, a coffee, a movie, a drink. The subjective over-interpretation from his part has started to suffocate her feelings. She could not even offer a nice gesture without him thinking that she might want something more. It became annoying.

Everything between them became less natural. She was annoyed he could think that she was clingy. Distance is not that bad sometimes. The feeling of being able to express herself freely was lost somewhere between the ten bus stops separating their homes. Too bad he could not handle that.

Sometimes people think that long-distance relationships are difficult to live with. She thinks differently. Long-distance empowered her love, gave him courage to be there (because he could not be there). They were closer than never. Now they are not even 30 minutes away from each other, yet they hardly communicate. His fear terrifies her. His fear stops her from giving, from being spontaneous. She started to question herself too.

But she knew that it would happen the day he came back. He was this kind of man. The kind of man who put walls around him before you could even get close to him. Just to be sure that you can never get hold of him. The only time he was without this armor was when he was away. How sad for him ! He did not know what he would eventually miss. Their usual nice moments when they were once together. Their talks, their laughs. What he forgot was that the most beautiful thing between them was the real time they had spent together, not the time apart, virtually through e-mails. But as long as he was paralyzed by their proximity, she could not do nothing. If she saw him in the street, she would tell him the truth. Writing him a text to ask him to have this conversation, she would not risk that one more time.

She continued to live her life on her side, without him. She had spent the last three days being sad then suddenly all the sadness seemed familiar to her. It makes no difference anymore. He was there or not. It makes no difference. That was the worst thing for a relationship. Definitely there is one thing worse than love or hate: indifference. She read it somewhere.

She went out this evening and for the first time felt relieved and free.

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