Absence Makes the Heart Grow Fonder or Wander?

1 Madonna-Andrew 2 Madonna-Andrew 3 Madonna-AndrewONE DAY, we will wake up in each other’s arms, hugging and kissing as if there’s no more tomorrow. One day we will wake up with the same time zone, air to breathe, sceneries to see and not just a virtual reality and one day you will no longer prepare for work, make dinner, do the laundry and take a walkby yourself because I will be by your side and we will stick to each other forever…

Madonna, 33 had clung to these thoughts for 4 years. She was once miles away from her loved one, Andrew Meadows, 40. Long distance affairs never work according to some old colloquial wisdom;they may work at the onset but will eventually dull out. However, Madonna and Andrew are one of those couples who proved this antiquated perception wrong. She and Andrew had met even before Apple’s Facetime, Skype, Instagram and other social media became handy.

Andrew went to the Philippines in 2006 to attend his best mate’s wedding who married a Filipina. One evening he and his newly wed friends dined in a Japanese restaurant, unmindful that he would meet his “Miss Right,” Madonna who was in the same place with her girlfriends. Andrew was so timid that he asked his friend to take Madonna’s number. Madonna didn’t want to call it love at first sight but rather an instant attraction because she believes that love flourishes as you get to know the person. She also just broke up with her boyfriend so she didn’t want to rush while the Brit decided to extend his holiday in the Philippines for four months to pursue Madonna and it was worth it because he returned to England with Madonna’s sweet Yes!

“I said yes to Andrew but at the back of my mind, I am so scared. Is he really serious about me? What if he changes his mind once he gets back to England”said Madonna. However, she took the risk. “Life is either a daring adventure or nothing at all,” just like in Love. More than the 8-hour time difference;the language and cultural differences were the bigger challenges that the lovers have braved during those times they were apart from each other. Madonna said “there were moments that I wanted to give up especially when you hear people doubting on his loyalty because he is a foreigner, some were prying if he was really single, no children but it was our trust to each other that took away all these doubts.” Andrew called Madonna every single day and sent greeting cards during special occasions. He came back to the Philippines 6 months later to spend more time with his love and to meet Madonna’s family. Madonna recalled that while Andrew was in the Philippines, she noticed critical eyes on them; she heard remarks blabbing that Andrew was her quick ticket to go abroad. She was gutted because it never occurred on her that she would marry a non-Filipino bloke. Madonna just shrugged all these false accusations off because she knew the truth in her heart, she was happy with her life in the Philippines.

Our Filipina saw Andrew’s sincerity and it was then when she realized that he was the one. After three years, they decided to tie the knot however Andrew and Madonna’s love story didn’t end there. They had to endure being apart for another two years because of immigration matters. “2 years was no joke, it was harder because we are already husband and wife, there were times that we fight, it’s normal, we sort it out right away, he would call me first most of the time, communication is so important” stressed Madonna.Being not able to talk often gives you happy jitters every time you hear your partner’s voice. You also learn to master being independent and in a relationship at the same time.

Long Distance relationships might be difficult for others but easy for those who are willing to commit. My mum and dad had been physically separated for 8 years; mobile phones and social media didn’t even exist and yet remained faithful to each other. My Dad simply said, “I made a vow before God.”

The long wait for Andrew and Madonna had come to an end in 2011 when the latter joined her husband in the UK. “In Love, you have to sacrifice. The Lord answered my prayer to be with Andrew and build a family.”Madonna is expecting her second baby; it’s definitely worth the wait!

Opponents of Long Distance affairs point out that they are masquerade of real relationships, can be exciting, passionate and sweet on the surface but beneath, lay empty promises. On the other hand, for a believer of Love, Love knows no distance.

by Joy Mesina


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