When I stepped on the train in the afternoon, I knew that I would miss the last train home, meaning I'd have to wait all night in a city I'd never been in, by myself, for the first train back home that was scheduled for 5 am. Usually I would have freaked out by the thought of being alone all night in a big city on a wintry Tuesday, but this time, it didn't matter. I was on a mission. A mission of love.
What amazes me to this day is how clear the guidance was that I received. The moment I met Damien I felt closer to him than I had felt to anyone ever before. I felt like we'd known each other for years. It almost physically hurt to walk away from him after our first little five-minute chit chat at the merch booth at a large music venue. He had just finished up playing on stage with his band. Yup, it's the original "girl falls in love with rock star type guy playing in a band" story ;)
On the way home from the concert, my mind kept telling me: "Don't be silly, he's American, for Christ's sake! And he probably has a girlfriend anyway. Or is married, for that matter!"
But I couldn't stop thinking about him. I couldn't eat or sleep or focus on anything productive in the next couple days. A voice even clearer and louder than my mind kept saying: "This could be the man of your dreams, you just have to do something!"
And that's how I ended up on that train that would take me to the German town of Saarbruecken where his band was playing just a few days after our first encounter. I felt very vulnerable, timid and completely overwhelmed with my innocent, yet strong feelings of love at a loud, beer-drenched Thrash Metal concert.
He recognized me, took me backstage (more overwhelm), we hung out in the tour bus. The first kiss felt surreal, but at the same time very natural. When we parted that night he told me: "I will email you every day!". I felt like I could fly. And didn't mind spending the next three hours in a shady bar by myself, waiting for that 5 o'clock train to take me back home to the town I was living in at the time. And no, I didn't have a smartphone to help pass the time...
He kept his word. We did email every day. I got to see him again two weeks later and we were able to spend a whole weekend together. I hid in his sleeping bunk on the bus and actually spent three days on tour with a real band! As exciting as this was, the only thing that really mattered was being with D.
And then the tour was over and he flew back to California. I had no idea when I would see him again. If I would ever see him again. What would happen?
We kept on emailing every day. He sent me a lovely package with little gifts that reminded him of me. And I started to plan my next adventure: I got a new passport and booked a flight to San Francisco via Paris. I had never been out of Europe before, and I had never flown by myself. But it didn't matter. I was on a mission!
It was like an invisible force guided me every step of the way. My thinking, doubting mind had no chance. And so I took a tram to the airport at 5 am on a cold February morning and stepped onto that plane with my little backpack and a heart filled with romantic dreams.
Over the next two years, I took many more trains and flights by myself to see the man of my dreams. I spent three months in San Francisco, three weeks out of these by myself when he went on tour again. We got engaged. I worked my way through mountains of paperwork to get my green card, and we got married in 2013. Leaving my home country and my family behind and transitioning from a long-distance relationship to a marriage came with its own set of challenges. But it's the best decision I've ever made! Or actually, it wasn't really a decision. I simply couldn't have acted any different.
A few times a year he still goes out on tour with his band, and I'm left alone at home for anywhere from two to eight weeks. As much as I dread this time beforehand, it's usually good for me. For us. It's easy to lose yourself in a relationship...it's that time alone that pushes you to define yourself outside of the relationship, take a good look at yourself, and get to work. On yourself. On your life. And reconnect with that inner guidance that transcends all fear and pushes you lovingly, but relentlessly to your own fulfillment.