My finance is currently living in Armenia. She is from the U.S. but moved there about 9 months ago to work with children and do other humanitarian work. Armenia is somewhat a backwards country technologically and that has made communication between us more difficult than what it normally would have to be.
Right from the start though, we got ourselves set up to be able to talk on the Internet through instant messaging. We talk nearly every day even though she is about 10 hours ahead of me in the States. It is important for us to be able to share our days with each other.
We have a date night which is usually Friday night for me and Saturday morning for her. Our dates will consist of sharing the same food, which we each make and then afterward we will watch a movie together or play an Internet game.
We each have Webcams although they are slow and make it difficult to communicate because of the often delay or the signal just not going through at all. We send each other gifts and cards through the mail and via the Internet.
For her birthday I created a treasure map and gave her a new clue each day that eventually led her to a website that I created just for her that had pictures and a PowerPoint presentation with music that I created.
Packages are slow to arrive and are very expensive to send. I am able to send flowers and chocolates for special occasions like our anniversary and her birthday. We also read the same books and articles so that we may discuss them. We share the challenges of work with each other and ask each others opinions about how to handle problems.
Because the Internet often goes out on us, we have learned that we must be patient with each other and not assume the worst if one of us cannot get on line.
And one of the most valuable things to help our relationship is that we pray for each other toward the end of each conversation. I pray to be able to meet her needs and for her welfare and success. She does the same for me. When we are faced with problems and miscommunication this time of honest prayer breaks down the barriers between us and really allows the love to flow. I cannot tell you the number of times our prayers have ended with happy tears.
I have also made a rule that seems to help, which is that only one person is allowed to be a fool at a time. That means if she goes off on some problem, and is upset and irrational, that I know I must step up and comfort her. She does the same for me. This is important because sometimes our situation is quite rough on us and we wonder if it is really worth the difficulties. I have realized that sometimes she just needs to here from me, “Honey, I love you and you are so very much worth the wait.”
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