Every lesbian love story is beautiful, but ours is my favourite.
It wasn’t too long after meeting Natalie, that I bought her a frame engraved with those words alongside a photo of the two of us. I had no doubt in my mind that she was the one, and every time we’d meet, we were sure to let each other know how serious we were about one another. You see, it was love at first sight. A term that I accept is probably hard to understand unless you’ve experienced it yourself. I remember rolling my eyes at the thought. How could you possibly love somebody you don’t even know? Queue Natalie…
…and the start of our sickeningly cute lesbian love story…
Let’s start at the beginning. The night I lay scrolling mindlessly through Plenty of Fish profiles, seeking anybody who’d help me forget the emptiness I felt inside. It had been a tough six months. The worst of my life, in fact. The loss of my beloved Grandmother and the breakdown of a viciously toxic relationship had stripped me of the person I once knew. Little did I know at the time, it was like a snake shedding its skin. I had to encounter loss and suffering in order to grow.
One New Message: You’re Beautiful. That was it — just two simple words from the mysterious beauty with lilac hair and piercings. I stared way longer than is probably acceptable at that photo while figuring out what to reply to such a generic message. Resisting the urge to respond right away, I clicked through to read her full profile. That’s odd, I thought. Our personal write-ups – you know that section where you have to write a bit about yourself – they were almost identical.
I can’t remember exactly what I replied, but it was probably something embarrassing along the lines of ‘that’s rich coming from you‘. God, I thought I was so smooth. I’m pretty sure we saved our first conversations from the dating app somewhere. We’ll have to dig them out to give you all a good laugh. Anyway, I digress, but that’s how we first, I suppose you could say, found each other.
For the first time in what felt like a long time, I was genuinely excited to be speaking to this girl. She was funny, beautiful, and seemed pretty interested in me as well. The conversation flowed so naturally that I hadn’t even considered the bombshell that was to follow. “I can’t believe you live so far away.” Sorry, what? What does she mean? The app should only match me with local people.
Not a Fairy Tale Lesbian Love Story After All…
… Or was it? “What do you mean? Where are you from?” Surely she can’t be that far away. “The Isle of Man.” Oh. Shit. This girl lives on the opposite side of the country. Not only that, but I’d have to take an hours flight from London to get there. OK, I thought, that’s OK. I barely even know this girl, so it will be easy not to get attached. Except it wasn’t. There was just something about this girl. And she felt the same. In any case, the app matched us for some bizarre reason, despite our locations. Surely this was meant to be?
After that, we spoke almost every day. Long-winded messages about everything from work to family and life in general. We both tried to avoid raising the subject of meeting one another as we didn’t want there to be any pressure. But there was no doubt it was the elephant in our virtual room.
It had been around 4 or 5 weeks since we’d first started talking when Natalie announced she’d be coming to the ‘mainland’. She was to be in Liverpool for work and asked if I’d drive up to meet her. It would mean a 4-hour drive up from London. And a 4-hour drive back should things not work out. However, I didn’t hesitate to say yes. Either way, I had to know if the feelings I felt were real. Or had I fallen for somebody who I’d concocted in my imagination?
It just so happened, the weekend we were due to meet coincided with Valentines Day. Was it fate that we would meet on the 14th of February? Or were we tempting fate? So many questions and uncertainties. But one thing was for sure. I couldn’t wait to finally meet the mysterious girl with lilac hair & piercings in person.
Soon enough, the day arrived. I got in my car and commenced on my journey to Liverpool. It wasn’t long before I ran into my first traffic jam of the day. To cut a long story short, this traffic jam was one of many, and what should have been no longer than a 4-hour journey, ended up taking me almost 8-hours. Naturally, Natalie thought she had been stood up, and I was questioning whether the universe was trying to tell me something!
When I finally did arrive, our first encounter was, how can I put this, awkward. Of course, I got lost, so Natalie had to drive out to meet me. She couldn’t get out of the car, so we shared this awkward wave before I followed her back to where she was staying. Feeling flustered and clammy after spending all day in the car, I was feeling far from attractive by this point. But I was here now, so I just had to roll with it.
We both got out of our cars and approached one another for the very first time. It has to be said; it was probably the most intense moments of my life. An unfamiliar feeling washed over me. I was nervous and weak at the knees, but at the same time, I felt calm. It was like something clicked into place. I believe that something inside me knew that I’d found ‘home’.
It’s safe to say there was no reason for me to return to London that night. I ended up staying the entire weekend, and the mystery girl with lilac hair and piercings was the most enchanting person I’d ever met. We barely slept all weekend. We drank, listened to music, and poured our hearts out about anything and everything. It was perfect.
But of course, our bubble eventually had to be burst. Natalie had to fly back to the Isle of Man, and I had to return to my job in London. Would we see each other again? Could we make a long-distance relationship work? Again, we avoided putting any pressure on one another to commit to anything. But my heart broke harder than I care to admit as I left the sanctuary of the apartment we shared that weekend. I sprayed the aftershave I wore all weekend on Natalie’s pillow, in the hope she’d remember me for just that little bit longer.
That night, once I got back to London, we spoke for hours on the phone. We’d only just left each other, but we missed one another like crazy. By the end of the phone call, we’d made a plan that I would fly to the Isle of Man the very next weekend. Natalie flat-shared, so it meant I’d meet her friends after just 1-week of knowing each other, but we both knew this wasn’t just a fling. People say it’s typical of lesbians to move quickly in relationships and perhaps that’s true. But for us, we knew what we had was the real deal.
After another perfect weekend on the Isle of Man, we had sealed the deal. I left as Natalie’s girlfriend, and from that day on, we didn’t go one weekend without seeing each other. Natalie would fly to me in London, or vice versa. It wasn’t easy, but we both put all of our efforts into making it work. Our relationship continued to flourish, fuelled by adventurous dates, shared morals & outlooks on life, and most importantly, abundant love & trust.
After six incredible months, we decided it was time to move in with one another. A dream to travel was one we both shared, so the idea was for Natalie to move to London, so we could both start saving for our trip of a lifetime. In many ways, we were ‘spoilt’ in London. We both had good jobs with a healthy income, great friends, a lovely home, and we were comfortable. But comfortable is a dangerous place to be, so after too many excuses and even more doubts, we booked the one-way flight that would change our lives forever.
Our Travel Lesbian Love Story
Of course, our lesbian love story doesn’t end there. Our travel story began on the 2nd of October 2017. We quit our jobs, sold most of our belongings, and backpacks ready boarded that flight from London to Bangkok. At that point, we were utterly oblivious to the roller-coaster adventure that lay ahead of us. We had plans to travel for a year or so, or until our money ran out. Yet here we still are, living the life we always dreamed about. All because, once again, we took a risk.
So I guess the moral of our lesbian love story is this: Take that risk. Board that flight. Chase that boy or girl. What’s the worst that could happen?
As for the rest of our lesbian love story… It’s just getting started.