Long Distance Love Can Work
By Rachel George
When it comes to long-distance relationships, there are so many questions to consider. How are we going to do this? Are we going to see each other, often? Will there be frequent communication? How do we make this work? It can be quite overwhelming, but worthwhile at the same time.
Trinidadian-born Kassandra and Peter made their long-distance relationship work after meeting at a music festival in Montreal in 2009. It was a “pretty undeniable” spark that led them into years of matrimony, with a few apart. They spent the first year of their marriage together and the next few years of being together long distance.
“We don’t live a typical married life, with 9-5 jobs and seeing each other every day at dinner. We don’t live that life because he’s a touring engineer, and sometimes he’s gone for months,” she said. “We’re still long-distance in many ways in our marriage, but we’ve built a foundation that makes it work for us.”
When they met, Peter was a U.S. resident living more in Trinidad and working as an audio engineer. Meanwhile, Kassandra was a business consultant living in Montreal. She had her reservations stemming from a previous long-distance relationship the year before.
“I told myself I am not getting into a long distance relationship again. He’s really good looking and very intelligent, but we’ll stay friends,” she said. But when the matters of the heart are involved, you just can’t help it.
Their relationship progressively grew after diligent and consistent communication leading to a trip to meet his mom and a life-changing ultimatum. Kassandra told Peter, “if he wants to get serious, then he has one year to relocate permanently to the U.S.”
In eight months, Peter uprooted his entire life and professional career permanently from Trinidad to the US to be near the woman he loved. Talk about traveling for love. The couple wed at the Ladies Pavilion at Central Park in New York City on October 27, 2012, with only their mothers in attendance and a gang of park onlookers.
“Beyond her communication, intelligence, and her beauty, she’s a very outgoing person,” he said. “Sometimes she’ll wake up wanting to do something new or she’ll starting pursuing it before you could even blink. That was a driving force for me.”
So how did they make it work? How did they stay connected while taking their love on the road? Here are 5 tips to help stay connected in your long-distance relationship.
- Check-ins. “We ensure we talk at least once a day, whether its text, a call or video. We make some point of contact, every single day.
- Effective communication. “We’re kind to each other and thinking about the tone of voice we’re using when we approach one another,” Kassandra said. “We can be upset and disagree, but there’s a way to communicate your discontent with someone. I love him too much to disrespect him. That’s my soulmate, that’s my partner.”
- Shock and awe. “We still celebrate our birthdays; whether we’re apart or not, we still celebrate our anniversary. He surprises me sometimes by sending flowers to our home. I’ll send him something too.
- Maintaining your independence. “Sure, I have my moments where I miss him a lot, but I’ve always been independent and also focused on achieving what my personal and professional goals. So that takes up a lot of my time, as well.”
- Be prepared. “If you’re not prepared to do a little work or sometimes go the extra mile, it’s not for you, ” Peter said. “But give it a try.”