Thursday, May 15, 2008

Global Love

A week into his "American Holiday," my boyfriend abruptly packed his belongings and flew back to England. I went to bed last night thinking that "tomorrow" would be yet another delightful day playing host to my British boyfriend in Miami.
We had plans- dinner plans, lunch plans, plans to meet friends, plans with family, boat plans, beach plans. Basically- we had a lot of plans. I had it all figured out- to a tee- what our itinerary would be while he was here with me (and I’m generally not a planner…)
But this morning- at about seven a.m., I was rudely awakened by Michael whispering in my ear, “Morgan. Get up. My agent just called. I have to be back in England tonight.”
And that was that.

I've spent two years in a relationship with a phantom boyfriend. Because of his career (professional athlete)- I've attended the weddings of my best friends alone, gone stag to a number of birthday bashes, and even arrived unaccompanied to my own going away parties. I've been "that girl" dancing on her own- "That girl" with no one to hold hands with while tears stream down her face during the ceremonies- "That girl" who upon replying, “yes, I have a boyfriend” - hears disbelievers declaring behind her back, "poor thing...she must really hate being single to feel it necessary to invent a relationship. British soccer player? my ass.”
And what can I say?
I have no defense.
He's there- I'm here- And the only way for me to be with him is to fly, yet again, over the Atlantic.

I’m closer with Michael’s family than I am with some of my own relatives, I’ve come to know and love the majority of his friends, and I’ve been present at every single significant event in his life since I met him. THIS was going to be MY summer. I was going to prove to all the skeptics that no, I didn’t make him up. I really do have a boyfriend. This was my summer to introduce my loved ones to the man I have shared my life with for the past two years. And now that’s all gone. He’s gone. And there’s nothing I can do about it.

Global love. That’s what this is.
“Globalization” is one of those key words that’s thrown into conversation to either dull down perverse expansions of large corporations, or that token utterance we chuck into acceptance essays and job interviews to make us sound business savvy. Either way, Globalization is as prominent in today’s society as a burger and fries - to a point where we must all define our own meanings for it and integrate “Global Perspectives” into our understanding, thinking, and acceptance of the world.
Now comes the twist: Globalization is related to business, right? We all know that the world is getting smaller- boundaries are blurred- and airline miles are racking up for the majority of uber-successful businessmen and women. We are learning about international laws and practices in school and later, exercising this knowledge once we reach Wall Street (or the like). What we don’t learn in school- or at multinational conferences in Singapore- is how to deal with the Globalization of love.
Surely, The Economist doesn’t include a “relationships” section.

There are a few things that are instilled in us as we grow up.
We have checklists.
One: Find a job that is both lucrative and enjoyable. Check.
Two: Fall in love, get married, and possibly one day, reproduce.
It seems easy enough- but what about Globalization? What if my company is based in London, I spend half my week at the office in Hong Kong, and the other half working with clients in Geneva and New York? Where do love and marriage and children come in? Where does the second date even come in?
When I lived in NY, I wasn’t the global one- but I dated a few of them. I must say that “Globalization” is the best excuse to break up with someone- or to stave off the “how should we define our relationship” conversation. I definitely heard, more than once, that “It’s just a critical time for the business right now. I’m here and there and I just can’t give you what you need.” I took it as it came, sent a few nasty e-mails, and then one day- I was the global half of a relationship.

Since that fateful wedding two years ago where I met Michael, together we have re-defined long-distance relationships to a point where “long-distance” became “long-shot.” At times, our phone bills have exceeded our paychecks and our physical distances have ranged anywhere from New York-England, England-France, England- Dubai, Russia, Thailand, Mexico, and beyond.

And this was supposed to be MY summer:
Michael’s season had ended- He came to America.
No more time-zone calculations, no more incessant e-mail checking, no more Skype headset testing- this was supposed to be it.
And now? He’s gone and I’m moving to Spain in a few months.

And that, my friends, is Global Love.


Anonymous said...

Thats so sad!!! I completely understand how you feel. I love the way you word it and the context you put it in. Keep the posts coming!

Major said...

Can't believe you're talking about marriage and babies... It's depressing.