How The Orlando Shootings Affected Me Indirectly

This weekend was full of mourning for Christina Grimmie, the 49 individuals who died and the 53 who were injured. My heart hurts in ways that I can’t describe. I have never met these people, and now I won’t get to. All of them were gone too soon, by sick minded people. All an hour away from home.

On Sunday, I saw a person running out of a store. My heart began beating faster and I almost started running too, until I realized he was a kid catching up to his family. I was so scared that another thing was going to happen. That things will continue to go out of hand and people will continue to die for the third day in a row.

Is it selfish of me to think this way? To be afraid, even though I was not personally affected by the events that happened? Maybe I am. But I know I am not the only person who feels this way.

I am in a new state of being constantly aware. I am this tiny little speck in this huge world. I’m just one life. It can be taken so easily by hateful people. We shouldn’t be living in constant fear. We shouldn’t take life lightly. That is what this weekend showed us. Innocent people with so much life ahead of them died for reasons that we will never understand. It makes people feel hopeless and faithless. It makes people feel like there is no good in the world. It shouldn’t be like that. There’s no one at fault, except the shooters. It’s not the government’s fault, because if someone has the intention to kill, they will kill. There are sick people on this planet and there always will be.

Many people feel defeated, including myself. I’ve seen articles saying prayers don’t do anything. But the last thing you should do is to stop having faith and to stop praying. I truly believe that what happened in Orlando is more than just a hate crime. I’ve read countless articles and they only scare me more. I’m terrified for what’s to come within the next month. So, I will never stop praying. I have God in my heart and I know he will protect me. So don’t lose faith or sight of what is important. Stay safe, because nobody knows what can happen next.

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What They Don’t Tell You About Long-Distance Relationships

They suck. They’re hard. And no matter what your friends say, they don’t understand. Not unless they’ve been in a long-distance relationship.

But they are so worth it, especially when it’s with the right person.

I’ve only been in a long-distance relationship for almost six months now. So, I am not an expert. But there are some things that I think everyone should know about long-distance.

Some people don’t think it is as hard as it really is. I’ve had to drop off my boyfriend at the airport four times now and each time it has gotten harder and harder. There’s no easy solution to calm my tears. My biggest pet peeve is when people say, “Why are you crying? You’re going to see him in a month.” I know I’ll see him again. I just can’t handle driving to the airport and knowing I only have an hour left with him. I can’t handle saying goodbye and watching him walk away to the shuttles at the airport. I can’t handle not being able to do anything about it. All I can do is ask God for strength. Because, letting go of my boyfriend’s hand at the airport and watching him cry as hard as I am breaks my heart. Every trip ends with a mini-heartbreak. It creeps over us and in the back of my mind I know I’ll have to say goodbye to him at the end of the weekend.

That’s what people don’t see. I get sad, because there’s nothing I can do about the distance. Especially since we are both in school. If I could, I’d drive all the way to Milwaukee to visit him. It’d take me 19 hours and hundreds of dollars on gas, so it doesn’t make much sense. But if it was up to me, I’d see him every single day.

The positives of our relationship will always be worth all of the mini-heartbreaks. The distance makes me appreciate him more. So, I will never take my boyfriend or time with him for granted. Every trip we have makes us remember why we love each other so much. It strengthens our relationship. We are forced to develop stronger communication skills. Since we are not in person, we can’t see the other person’s body language. Especially if there is an argument or disagreement. We are forced to talk things through and tell each other what’s on our mind, which betters our relationship. We also have something to look forward to every month. We talk about our upcoming trips for so long, so when the countdown ends we are extremely excited. We always have something to celebrate during our visits, since we don’t get to see each other for every single holiday or anniversary. All the little things become more special.

Long-distance isn’t easy. My boyfriend and I hate it. But it’s something we have to do, because not being together isn’t an option. We just want more support from friends when we get back home. We want someone to actually ask us if we are okay, because more than likely we aren’t. We want people to understand that FaceTime is not the same as face to face. That nothing is better than being in person together. So, the next time you have a friend who is upset about their long-distance boyfriend/girlfriend going home. Please be supportive and comfort them. They’ll really need it.