S: Pandemic Woes

Well. Q and I have faced some tough times these last 8 months, but none as tough as what’s been going on for the last month and a half. A whole pandemic.

Not only are we facing the global implications of this, but locally, he’s on modified lockdown, which means they can barely leave the pod. His JPay JP5 player is on the fritz/broken, so we can’t communicate like we used to with writing emails. Our phone time is strenuous, because I’m working from home and everyone in the pod has unlimited clicks and free phone calls on Thursdays. OH, and a little thing called – we can’t see each-other, as all facilities ended visitation as of March 12th.

Luckily his positive attitude and my ability to make light of situations, make us a perfect match. We keep eachother grounded in many ways.

We spent some time tonight talking about our spiritual connection and not taking anything for granted. Seeing eachother often and going through the hustle and bustle of life allowed us to slack a little when it came to building in that category. Our wavelengths have never been off, but they could definitely use adjustments.

He was talked about how his meditation and prayer the night before made way for a memory that put a smile on his face.

We took the moment to note the contemplation of the week: ‘Focus on what you can control.’ We both get so wrapped up with the fact that we’re not together, that we sometimes forget the present. We are together and we are growing everyday. Learning and experiencing and continuing to fall in love every single day. That is a relationship I want to have.

S

Q + S: How Loving Yourself, Can Equal Finding Love

Q and I talk a lot about self love, and the true love we have with one another. When we were working on the ‘100 Reasons I Love You’ writing we did for eachother over Valentine’s Day, we both mentioned how we wanted to find things about eachother that didn’t have to do with ourselves.

Some people say you can’t love others because they love you, but we say why not? The true love you seek lies within you.

Take a look at a letter Q wrote, sharing his perspective on how it’s okay to love your significant other because they love you.

“I woke up this morning thinking of you and how much I love you. It’s A LOT. It’s funny you spoke on loving me because I love you and loving the part of yourself that you see in me. I thought about that same very exact thing. I thought about the way you remind me of my mother first. Then, I was like – well she reminds of my sister too. and Then I was like… well duh, they both are my relatives, so I love them because they are a reflection of me. 🙂 And think about this infinite model of love… I love you because you love me (not solely because of that, but yeah)… and your love makes me love me more, which in turn make me love you more, which also in turn makes you love me more and the cycle continues on your side of the cycle and on and on…

I don’t necessarily think loving someone because you resonate with the ‘you’ inside of them is a bad thing. On the real, I think that’s the a true means of cultivating our intense type love. It not loving you because you love me per say, its more a love for you based on a self-love. That sounds like a very healthy basis for building a very healthy love, right? That’s why saying we love US is so profound and depicts a deeper aspect of our bubble and its perspective…

I did also acknowledge our differences. Propagated mostly by our upbringing and difference in experience. Which I think is awesome. Two whole halves starting at different points to ascertain life in depth. Just like having two eyes operating in tandem to capture the third dimension… I love nature and its wisdom. And I know you do too. :)”

– Q, excerpt from hand-written letter to S, 2/16/20

When you spend time focusing on loving yourself, you start to see the quality of love you deserve. Not only that, but you start to recognize all the things you love about yourself. This then starts to reveal the things you love about others. It truly starts with the self.

– S

S: You Teach Me, and I’ll Teach You

– Doodle by Q, 1/22/20

Babe and I have spent January connecting on our childhoods. While it’s a subject we’ve built in prior years and months of our time together, it means so much more now.

We found a similar love in Pokémon. Telling stories of middle school. Playing games, trading cards. Talking about memories of our friends and family connections. We sang the theme song together at visitation; it felt like it was only the two of us.

Yeah. Us singing Pokémon together was the highlight of my day this visit was one of the best so far. I could see it… us and our forever. I could see it clearly today. And looking in your face and seeing that beautiful smile and the face of my love…

– Q, 1/21/20

We also shared our love of Parappa the Rapper. Sang some lyrics together from the game and recalled our favorite boards.

There’s something about the past that helps mend futures. While it’s long gone, it builds lifetime connection through good and bad times. Knowing your partner’s childhood – no matter how much it differs from yours – can truly create deeper understanding.

Ask your significant other – ‘Tell me something I don’t know about you from your childhood?’ Then sit back, and enjoy.

– S

Q: NOT Home For the Holidays (Redux)

Prison is not the ideal place for spending the holiday season. Disgruntled inmates treat the holidays with either contempt or disregard. For the last 12 years of my incarceration, I opted for the latter. However, I feel the next few though will be different… now that I have S….

We’d been talking for only a few months. Had some face-to-face time, and solidified a higher level in our relationship. Deciding to carry on a relationship given the condition is a monumental choice; and backed by the pressures of the holiday season to “be together…” let’s just say our first holiday season couldn’t have been foreseen.

S loves to travel… which for a slightly over-protective individual like myself, being unable to be “there” for her, is very troubling… but life persists…

Thanksgiving, S travelled to her mother’s house: a nice driving distance away from home. We try our best to stay connected via phone, especially when she’s traveling. Even though it doesn’t necessarily change the way we communicate for the majority, its like I can feel when she’s not home… I get the same deep sinking feeling…

Even when I know S made it to her destination, the feeling remains. The holidays is about family… and to have her around hers, yet splitting the difference on the phone with me, seems wrong. So I try to avoid it… What seems to be a vacation and a time for embracing to everyone else, is more of a time for restriction and limitation for S and I. Which is okay, because it’s real.

Sometimes, I fear that our relationship won’t be as strong because it’ll lack “real world experience.” Like its staged in a fantastic play, where negatives are often hidden in an array of flowery words unaided by presence. But when those moments arise where you can feel strain, you can’t deny that you are being tried. Strangely, that brings me a sense of relief…

Of course I can’t wait to “be with” S for the holidays. As I have told her multiple times, she IS my family. The visions of us cooking, sharing, loving, and thoroughly enjoying the season are hard, but motivating. A few more holiday seasons dot our path to one day being free together, bringing in the holidays…

Until then though, I guess there is something special to learn of our love and the holidays. We just have to remain open and receptive to the wisdom the times and the trials have to offer us in our life now, and in our future…

Q, written 1/5/20
(Read the S version here)

S: Surviving the 1st Holiday

It’s January 2, 2020, and the holiday season is now complete. It’s a brand new year and a new opportunity to recharge life.

Needless to say, it’s been rough for Q and I. While our love has proven to withstand the test of time, it’s still very youthful and slightly needy; like a toddler.

Therefore, we’ve found ourselves communicating more frequently while going through what they call the ‘holiday season.’

Thanksgiving was the first culprit of the nonsense. Being around my family and traveling, eating and drinking, creating memories… knowing that Q should be by my side throughout. While a lot of the family knows about Q and I and our situation, it’s not always the easiest thing to bring up to everyone. So a lot of the time, I’ve been forced to hold my feelings or sneak away to get my 20 minutes alone with Q via cell phone tower waves.

As expected, we spent a lot of time thinking and talking about the future. After personally ‘doing Christmas’ 4 times, we noted how we will have Christmas at our house to bring everyone to US.

New Year’s Eve was gentle. As a performer, I had a show that night. Luckily, it was a late night at the facility, which allowed Q to be able to call at 11:50pm – letting us count down the minutes to the new year, and spend it together. We were in two different places at once, but together nonetheless.

All in all, we got through it.

The key was remembering that it’s okay to talk often. Meaningful conversation or not, the emotions are going to be high and plentiful. Listening actively and allowing all feelings – positive and negative – to flow, will make it easy to manage.

We ended New Year’s hand in hand at visit, transferring energy to each other, closing our eyes, breathing together and remembering that we make our world. Vowing to set goals and intentions for our next year together. Knowing the bubble is only as strong as we allow it to be.

– S

S: Achieving Greatness Through Love

Yesterday, we got a national holiday visit. 3 hours of bliss holding hands and talking face to face. Recharging the bubble and reminding each other of true love, by only looking into each other’s eyes.

I remember not knowing what true love was; but getting to know Q again and remembering how we were back then quickly brought me back to that point.

Today, I thought of the quality of love it takes to feel invincible. To be able to feel like you can do anything just by knowing and feeling and understanding how rare it is to be exposed to this form of power outside of a family relationship. It’s a beautiful thing. It reminded me that it’s important for us ALL to feel that way in our relationships.

Does your significant other enable you to achieve greatness? Why or why not?

S: The Little Things

Q and I have been seeing each other once every two weeks for the last month.

The first time I went to the prison, it had been the first time we’d seen each other in 12 years. It was almost like neither of us had changed. I was nervous of course, and a little off-put, as I had to wait over 3 hours before I was able to get my moment with him. But it was a moment like no other, and I wouldn’t trade it for the world.

This weekend was the 3rd time I’d been there. The bubble hangover was real, and the focus on the little things really started to take form for me.

When you have a restricted relationship – such as the one between Q and I, you really have to find ways to cherish the moments you have together, and the moments apart.

With communication becoming so on-demand these days, it’s become apparent that people are easy access. Social media allows us all to check up on each other, without ever reaching out. To make false connections in an instant and interpret words and emotions without a second thought. As people, we really have to become mindful of how we think of other individuals in context of ourselves in order to connect. That’s how Q and I have developed our path to feeling complete in one another.

When we’re speaking, it’s like dating. Spending time together, admiring talking about nothing, or talking about everything. Being very conscious of honesty and details. Trying to guess the facial expressions of one another. Enjoying being right and wrong about it. Enjoying the moods we’re in each day and hour, letting it influence our conversations.

His letters have become the pillow talk we’d have in the morning, and at night. They’re my safety net when I want to feel closer to him at any moment.

When we are holding hands, each subtle movement of an index finger to a palm becomes a physical ‘I love you.’

When we are locking eyes in the visitation room, there’s a thin line between purely feeling love, and making love.

Touching each others faces in silence becomes the way our souls slow dance, with their eyes closed, knowing that true love is among them.

My heart is definitely worried everything is too good to be true. But I try to stay present babe. Stay present in the moment and enjoy the Love we’re giving to one another each day.

– S, excerpt from Letter to Q 9/16/19

I’ve learned to start appreciating carrying Q everywhere I go, in my heart. Staying present and grateful for the time we’ve spent together. The things that remind me of him – including places I’ve been while talking to him, various music, random words, post-it notes on my desk, etc. I smile and remember that I am loved like no one else. That I am special in his eyes. That he’s out there being comforted by my love at every moment, just as I am by his. And that all of the little things matter.

-S

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