“You got nice moves!” I shouted over the DJ’s blaring music.
She smiled. “You too!”
Her shoulders and eyebrows rose and fell in rhythmic unison. I dramatically whipped about my elbows and knees in a poor man’s imitation of Michael Jackson.
Let’s get one thing straight: neither of us had nice moves.
But how do you meet someone at a wedding?
How do you impress a girl?
How do you get a guy to notice you?
Our story is nothing special. Laura and I – eh hem, David – met on a wedding dancefloor in South Bend, Indiana. Take a LUCKY guess at where the ceremony was held? 😉
Laura is from Texas by way of Midwest-parents who relocated for jobs 30 years ago. I’m an Ohio boy, by way of some European muts who came to work in rubber and steel mills but never left, even when the factories did.
Several months after that fateful meeting, many late-night phone calls, and Laura’s bold, what-the-heck-why-not decision to fly 1,100 miles from Dallas to Columbus, we were reunited and haven’t been apart since!
…Except for every Monday through Friday when Laura travels back to Dallas for work at the corporate offices of Southwest Airlines (free standby flights y’all!).
You see, the uniqueness of our situation is that we’re in a hybrid long-distance relationship. We’ve always been dating long-distance, but we are INCREDIBLY fortunate to be with each other almost every weekend! Trust me – we realize how lucky we are!
Laura’s job has phenomenal perks! This is one of those jobs that people kill for. Mainly, it gives her the freedom to travel anytime! Err… almost anytime.
What makes catching unlimited free flights even better is that Southwest does the whole work-life balance thing as well any company you’ll find. Flex-scheduling gives Laura every other Friday off in exchange for a normal 10 hour work day (which she swears she prefers 😛 ).
That means every second Thursday, I am eagerly rushing to meet Laura as she arrives on the last flight of the day. And on her non-flex weeks, she can usually still make it in by Friday night so that we have a full weekend together.
Jobs with travel perks can be awesome! And when you’re at a great company like Southwest where people genuinely enjoy the workweek as much as the weekend, it can’t be beat!
I’ve only had three (but who’s counting?) different jobs since Laura and I started dating, and they’ve ranged from very rigid, structured days to very liberal, work from anywhere cultures.
I’m currently in the latter, which gives me the freedom to spend an entire week or more working remotely. Like, I could literally work from anywhere in the world! Laura prefers I use that superpower to work from the kitchen table of her apartment.
You knew there was a “but” coming, right?
While the perks of our jobs are fantastic and have frankly allowed us to have this life together, we can’t help but feel like we’re not really, truly, together. Not yet.
And since absence makes the hard grow fonder, the last 100+ weeks apart have turned our hearts into erupting volcanoes of fonderness (trademarked). So, so much fonderness.
So here’s the deal!
We both really love our jobs, and not just for the perks, but for the coolness of our companies’ missions, the great friendships we have with our coworkers, and the stimulating nature of the work itself.
We also both really love our hometowns.
Watching the local-pride tug-of-war that happens when a Texan and an Ohioan try convincing each other that their state is the best is like watching an irresistible force hit an immovable object. Matter is destroyed, black holes are formed, time moves backwards. You get the picture.
We also both really love our families AND each other’s! Whether we’re reliving favorite stories with siblings, or making new memories with cousins – and there are plenty to go around in our big Catholic families (figured out where we met yet?) – the moments we all get to spend together mean the most.
In short, we are incredibly blessed to have wonderful jobs, families, friends, roots, and especially each other.
And we’re just crazy enough to try to have it all!
Hence, the birth of this blog.
We are on the path to personal, professional, and financial freedom. For us it’s the path to literal togetherness, but it encompasses more than that. We’re seeking the ability, the FREEDOM, to be with whomever, whenever, and wherever we need to be.
In our situation, that means being with each other, all the time, probably still at Laura’s kitchen table.
Who wouldn’t want the luxury to do that?
We want to set stretch goals for ourselves, thoughtfully plan steps for their attainment, and then execute on those plans. Oh, and document it for you all to watch 😊
Laura and I will use this space to both chronicle our journey and invite you to set your own bold goals for winning the freedoms that you’d like for your life. Whether those freedoms relate to mobility, relationships, health, finances or all the above – let’s walk this road together!
You can start by signing up for our mailing list! We’ll keep you updated with new posts – some may even be funny, but I make no promises you won’t be offended by Laura’s corniness – and any other helpful tips or fun nuggets we come across.
Thanks so much for joining us! Now let’s put one foot in front of the other…