I began writing for Forever Twenty Somethings with a blog dedicated to my boyfriend. If you haven’t already read it, keep your judgmental Internet stares to yourselves and give me the benefit of the doubt first (it’s only fair). From that point on, I began to dabble in all sorts of topics regarding romantic relationships—constant miscommunication, jealousy issues, balancing a career and a love life—you get the idea. However, the subject matter that became nearest and dearest to my heart, though I hate to admit it, is the frustrating and unforgiving battle that so many young people are now faced with: long distance.
This is nothing new. I’ve gone on and on about how difficult it is to maintain a healthy, mutually satisfying long distance relationship. You need all kinds of key ingredients: trust, honesty, commitment, patience, means of transportation, means of payment for said transportation, and above all else, sanity. Once you lose the last one, there’s absolutely no hope for either of you. And if you think you’re fully prepped for the warpath that is long distance love, make sure you’re armed with a gym membership or some sort of exercise regiment (punching bags work best for me), chocolate and alcohol (never in that order), and family and friends who love you enough to listen to you complain about it (keep it to a once a month maximum, please and thank you).
Every once in a while, we long distance couples have the chance to stick it to the God of Relationships and be extra romantic, in spite of all those stubborn miles. We send corny packages, we mail handwritten letters, we have Skype dates and fall asleep next to our Macbooks; in short, we adapt to our surroundings and embrace the positive aspects. But there will come a time when these substitutes no longer do the trick and we need more than a silly fix—we need the real thing. At least that’s how I felt on February 5th, when I left logic at the door and spontaneously booked a flight to see my boyfriend. No, he didn’t have a clue. Yes, I was bursting at the seams with anticipation. And definitely, it was more than worth it.
Feeling extra romantic? Here’s how I pulled it off.
Step 1: Trick him into thinking you won’t be seeing him for a REALLY long time by sending him something in the mail.
Being that it was Valentine’s Day, I did what any “girlfriend who wasn’t seeing her boyfriend in a couple months” would do, and I sent him corny shit. I bought the bear, I wrote a cute little note inside the card, I found his favorite chocolate—the whole bit. Not only did this random act of kindness win me some extra brownie points (my birthday is in a couple weeks), but it also solidified the fact that he would not be seeing me for a while. The mission was well underway.
Step 2: Begin to craft a very simple, nothing-out-the-ordinary white lie approximately 3-4 days prior to the day of the surprise.
Like clockwork, we talk on the phone before I go to bed most nights. So if I’m all of a sudden MIA for a few hours without any sort of warning, he’ll know something’s up. I planted the seed the weekend before my Tuesday night flight. **Saturday Lie: Danielle has this work thing that she invited me to next Tuesday. Sunday Lie: Remember that thing I told you about that Danielle invited me to on Tuesday night? I think I’m gonna go. Monday Lie: I found out that thing that I’m going to tomorrow night runs from like 8 – midnight, but free drinks! I might stay LOLz (literally, laugh out loud). Tuesday Lie: Hey baby, I’m on my way to that thing, I’m not sure when I’ll be getting out but I’ll shoot you a text later!** And that, is how it is done.
**Ladies, we all talk like that.
Step 3: Play it cool.
This is crucial to your plan. Keep to your normal routines and prohibit the use of hint-dropping. I mean it, no “you’ll never guess what I’m up to” lines—any boyfriend with a brain will crack that code in a second. You have to go into it with the mindset that nothing has changed. You never booked a flight, you’re not going to see him in less than a week, and this isn’t the most romantic show of affection you’ve ever demonstrated in your life. No, it’s just the end of February (double wink).
Step 4: Do not, I repeat DO NOT post anything on any of your personal social website(s).
You’d think I wouldn’t have to tell this to educated levelheaded adults such as yourselves, but as social media has taught us again and again, some of us need the extra reminder. By the way, this is the most important step! So don’t screw it up.
Step 5: Look really friggin’ cute.
Need I remind you that this will be the first time he’s seen you in more than a month (at least that’s how long it’s been in my case). So when he lays eyes on you, you better make damn sure you feel like a million bucks. If he loves you, he’ll think you look beautiful in sweats and a messy bun; but let’s be serious, we want to leave him thinking, “Oh gawd.” (if you said that in your best Big Sean voice, I adore you).
This is Cappawhat reporting to you live from the Long Distance Battlefield. Goodnight and wish me good luck.