Julie Lyles Carr: Playing Spin the Telephone...

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Playing Spin the Telephone...

1 of 8 camera france
Just in case I forget to tell you enough, I love your comments and emails.

Love.

I am often abysmal at replying in a timely manner.

A.Bys.Mal.

But I read all your comments and have the best intentions to email and I visit your blogs and love your thoughts and pictures and adventures.

Even as I struggle to email you back and let you know all that.

I wish I could tell you it was because I was all caught up on my laundry. That's why I haven't been emailing and commenting enough.

But that wouldn't be true.

I'm so not caught up on my laundry.

As in, at all.

I just continue to be startled when I look up at some point in the evening and discover that it is late, late, late.

This twenty-four hours in a day thing has some built-in confines.

Duh.

All my stuffed email box issues aside, I love when I see a comment like this...


Hey Julie,
My day doesn’t start until I read your blog every day. I love hearing about your stories makes me realize life with 2 kids is a walk in the park. But I did have a question and it is probably none of my business but I am sure others are wondering. How is 1 of 8 and her boy dealing with the long distance? I don’t remember reading anything in your blog about it and was curious.

Kim
Hey there, Sweet reader Kim!

Thought this was a great question~~and I figure if I'm putting these events out there in the form of a blog, I've kind of ipso facto made it something of your business and would be happy to give you my thoughts.

1 of 8 and Da Boy have long conducted a long distance relationship.

And it's not just your mother's long distance romance. A la pen pal romance. Fodder for a Nicholas Sparks novel. Nope.

Enter the technological age.

1 of 8 and Da Boy were email buddies for quite a while once Da Boy's family's moved away from the island. And once Skype, Facebook and YouTube entered the mix, the avenues of their romance were paved in HTML and CSS.

Ironically, when 1 of 8 began to research doing a year of study at the Sorbonne, Da Boy struggled with the idea of the increased geographic distance. One would think, since the long distance relationship was already in full bloom, that adding an ocean to the distance mix wouldn't be that disconcerting.

But it was.

And I do understand.

Sharing the same continent can seem to keep one close.

Spanning the Atlantic can seem a world away.

Da Boy had the perfect statement regarding 1 of 8's dream of spending the year in Paris. Are you ready for the best boyfriend quote ever?

Get ready.

Nicholas Sparks has nothin' on this.

Da Boy said:

"As the best friend, I'm telling you, go to Paris. I want you to go for the full year, not just a semester. I want you to experience, enjoy, see everything, live it....
...and as the boyfriend (perfect pause here for choking up...) I'm begging you, don't go."
I know.

Perfect.

Profound.

Awesome.

Because in those words, 1 of 8 was given the emotional freedom to follow this dream and to also know that Da Boy was making an emotional sacrifice for her to follow her bliss.

Sigh.

Top that, Nicholas Sparks.

And so, Sweet Kim, they are Skyping, emailing, texting. International cell phone service is slathered in gold in terms of how expensive those rates can be, so while she does have a French-based cell service, she and Da Boy are making great use of all the free communication modalities available on the web.

da boy skype
The biggest challenge has been the nine hour time difference. When 1 of 8 is at her university here in the States, she and Da Boy only have to deal with a two hour time difference. Since she's been in France, I've played operator a few times, talking with 1 of 8 on Skype and dialing Da Boy here in the States on my unlimited domestic long distance plan to let him know that she is online and waiting to Skype with him.

It takes work and dedication and international time clocks on their part.

But a significant portion of their relationship has already been conducted in cyberspace. They have a great dance step down when it comes to leveraging technology. They have an ongoing Scrabble game that remains active online. They send each other jokes, share moments, upload photos, watch movies together online as they sit in the warmth of their connected Skype screens.

It's very sweet to watch.

Because it's a relationship built on their commitment to communication and sharing, not predicated solely on their geographic proximity.

It's inspiring.

I would love for Da Boy to travel to France next spring, to experience first hand the city 1 of 8 already loves so well. I hope they get to have adventure there together. I hope they are able to build memories of each other there.

But all of that will be built on the friendship and romance they have already developed.

Obviously, pre-web romances in the past have survived distance and time. And while I certainly don't claim that cyber dates are as fun and connective as the real thing, there is something precious and unique about taking the time to communicate in such a deliberate way.

But make no mistake.

They miss each other.

A lot.

1/8 nick 5
And we miss both of them, Da Boy at his university on the West Coast and 1 of 8 at hers in the heart of the City of Light.





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