So I had successfully disarmed his bomb…but was about to hit him with mine. Well, not exactly. Date numero uno I told him that my goal was to move to Arizona and live with my family. It wasn’t planned out. I wasn’t sure when this would happen, but I knew it was happening. And since I had brought it up, he knew it was happening, too.
So now we were somewhere in the 2nd or 3rd month of dating and this started to fall into place. I had applied to be reinstated as a student at Northwestern. I had figured out when my lease is up and when I can move without incurring more expenses. It was becoming more real. So we talked about it. A lot. Sometimes I’d bring it up. Sometimes he would.
The Owl: So can I tell you something kind of weird?
Me: Of course. What’s up?
The Owl: I started looking at jobs in Arizona. That’s weird isn’t it?
Me: No. I think it’s sweet. BUT let’s get through the three months I’ll be in Chicago before we worry about Arizona, yeah?
The Owl: Yeah. I just wanted you to know.
Me: I’m glad you’re thinking in that direction though.
So that’s where I was at at 2 months.
That’s where he was at at 2 months.
That’s where we were at at 2 months.
Anyway. We spent the next 3 months together. Not inseparable, but we did a lot of things, and we did them together. We went jet skiing for my birthday. We went to Naples for a weekend trip. We attempted to go parasailing (but got rained out.) We tried restaurant after restaurant. We went to movies. We watched comedy specials. We cooked. We spent entire days in bed. We went on double dates with my friends. We went to parties and hung out in groups of his friends.
Really, it was a really good and healthy relationship. Every once in a while my anxiety would flare up like wildfire and he would just sit with me while it ran it’s course and died down until it was small enough for me to talk about and handle. Mostly, we just had fun and really enjoyed being together.
As the months went on and September was drawing near, I got more and more weepy. Part of me was scared that moving would mean losing him, and possibly, the best relationship I had been in to this point. Part of me was sure that we were going to work it out. We’d make it through the three months in Chicago, then he’d come to visit a couple times in Arizona, go on interviews, and move also. After all, he had brought up looking at jobs in the area…and he likes hiking, and climbing, and outdoors things…
Finally it was my last weekend in town before heading out on my road trip to Arizona by way of a three-month stint in Chicago…and we spent as much time together as we could. Every once in a while I’d cry – like after dinner in the car, or when parasailing got rained out – but mostly, I was happy I was with The Owl. He assured me that he thought it might work out. That he thinks we’re bigger than just Florida.
And off I went. Six months of dating. Six month of happiness. Six months and I left.
I didn’t cry. I didn’t call him every waking minute. We talked and texted the same as we always had… it felt just like every time one of us went out of town for work or family. Nothing changed except my physical location.
And I immediately started looking at flights to go back and visit a month later.
What would happen while I was away? Would he still want me to come visit? Was my moving away a convenient excuse to break up? Would he still consider moving with me? All this and more…