We broke up in August, while I was in Nice. I’m now back in New Zealand setting up my new life. After the effort I/we went through to get back together the last time, the long distance obstacle, the preparation to move countries, this is not the life I thought I would be setting up. But I’m doing it, I’m ok, I’m surviving.
I’m also still in near daily contact with the Train Driver – a recent development since my single return to the land of the long white cloud. I have a new job, I have just found a new flat and the Train Driver is coming home for a visit over his birthday weekend. I’m unsure of how I feel about seeing him – I want to be strong and make a pact with myself to not allow a reunion, but I’m not sure I would be kidding anyone if i were to try and say I wasn’t going to see him. He arrives in the country and I have just moved in to my new flat.
He sends me a message and I feel the wall i’ve worked so hard to build begin to crumble “I’d like to see you while i’m home – I don’t really want to see anyone apart from you to be honest”. It’s 9pm, I’m in my gym gear but i don’t care “you can come over now if you like?” and within minutes he’s here. I open the door and there he is…the man I loved – love? Either way, my heart rate sky rockets and I feel nervous all over again – I even have butterflies! Not a good sign for the crumbling wall. We sit on opposite sofa’s awkwardly ‘catching up’ on what would usually be daily chat. It gets late, he says he better let me get to bed and picks up his keys to leave. We hug goodbye in the doorway and our bodies feel like magnets. We must’ve stood there for at least 25 minutes…before we both realise he isn’t going anywhere. We can’t let go, physically or emotionally. He pulls his head back and looks into my the eyes, I sheepishly look up and back in to his eyes – absolutely terrified. How am I here, back in this position? Totally in love, totally besotted with the man who has broken my heart – twice. He kisses me and I melt. We hop in to bed and we lie there just cuddling and talking. We don’t talk about anything serious, just stories and memories – heck, we have enough – it has been a 10 year love story so far…
I remember walking in to my 6th form geography class, taking a seat next to a few girlfriends ready for the subject to begin. A row of boys sat behind us, one in particular always teasing me, throwing things at me and asking for massage’s. I of course thought he was quite annoying, not yet realising that teasing = flirting – the tall, gangly 16 year old Train Driver kinda got on my nerves to be honest. After a few months the teasing was still going on but one day on our way out of class he asks me to a party – I’m not sure what it was but all of a sudden I knew that I had to be at that party, I had to see him outside of the classroom. I talked my best friend in to coming with me Friday night and as all best friends should, she agreed. Friday night rolled around and we went to this party. Turns out it was a terrible party full of bogans and smelly pubescent boys so the Train Driver, my best friend, his best friend and I hop in the car to go home. As all romantic stories go, we have our first kiss in the back of the car – pure class! A few months later the Train Driver asks me to be his date to the ball – I turn him down – I wanted to go to my first ball with my girlfriends and I had decided I wasn’t that keen on him, but only because he was too keen on me. 7th form arrives and we’re best friends, there are three of us who spend all of our lunch breaks and free periods together – he has his first serious girlfriend, I have a new boyfriend (the captain of the 1st 15 rugby team I might add) and we discuss everything (and i mean everything) that happens in those relationships, his first, the rumour of my first – everything. We’re so close and he is so protective. I absolutely adore him – but not in that way, yet.
Now here we are, 10 years later – I still adore him, but I am also in love with him. It took me a good few years to see it, but the love has always been there. As we lie in bed laughing, smiling and kissing, we both get goosebumps at the realisation that it’s been 10 years and nothing has changed. The next three days are a blur – we spend all of our time together, playing tennis, going for lunch, laughing, kissing, holding hands – nothing could be better. No serious talks are had, which is really nice. He invites me to family dinner for his birthday and I slot back in to place like I or he had never left. I see the smiles on his parents face when I arrive, an unsaid ‘welcome home’ is given through a look and a hug. Lasagne, Eskimo Pies and a game of Phase 10 – this is what I miss, my other family. The goodbye comes and we’re sad, but he says he might come home for Christmas – I don’t hold my breath. I don’t want to get my hopes up – but part of me knows that the ‘meant to be’ mentality of him and I is lodged and secured in my mind, body and soul.
I barely hear from him over the next few months – my heart sinks each time I look at my phone and a message from him isn’t there. I go through a rollercoaster of emotions, I’m angry at him, I’m angry at myself, I’m angry at the situation and the distance – I feel humiliated, I feel used. I decide it’s time to let him know how I’m feeling, but I do it in a typical girl way and ask what I have done wrong. He replies saying I have done nothing wrong that he is just busy. I’m not stupid, we all know you make time for those you want to make time for. My heart drops, I’ve let myself fall for the Train Driver again – knowing that the ocean between us is the only moat keeping our fairytale relationship at bay.
Why can’t we just live in the same country?! Why can’t he just live in New Zealand?! I’m sick of trying to do all of this from a different country. I’m so over long distance!
A friend introduces me to Taylor Swifts song ‘The Last Time‘ – no song has ever struck so close to home with the Train Driver and my relationship. I miss him, I love him and I want to be with him – but how many more times can I ride this rollercoaster? While having a wine with a friend one night after a horrendous day at work I wonder if his birthday weekend we shared will be The Last Time.
The Train Drivers name pops up on my phone…
“I’ve emailed you, don’t freak out”
distanced hearts club ♥