Tackling a Long Distance Relationship

Posted on January 25th, by Shelby Wilder in Shelby Wilder. No Comments

Shelby and Johnny 2017

Christmas 2017

“How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard” -A.A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh

When you move away for college, everyone tells you that you’ll have the time of your life. They say you’ll meet new people, experience new things and make new memories. I think all these are true, and I have already met some amazing people and made great memories in my short time here at Findlay, but what happens when that one person you want to experience all of these things with is three hours away from you?

Shelby and Johnny 2013

Homecoming 2013

When I started dating my boyfriend, Johnny, in 2013 at the end of my freshman year of high school, no one prepared me for the journey we would take together. I thought the hardest things we would ever have to tackle were prom plans, long football practices, and having to agree on which movie we would watch. Little did I know the crazy plans God had lined up for us.

Being two years older than me, Johnny and I were only together for about six months before he started looking at, and got accepted into college. I was terrified at the thought of him moving away and put off the idea of his graduation every chance I got. In fall of 2014, Johnny started his freshman year at Miami University. Everyone says that long distance relationships are hard, but I had no idea. Suddenly, I realized how much I took for granted the fact that we got to see each other every day in high school, or the fact that we only lived seven minutes apart. My significant other and best friend was now two hours away from me.

Two years later, my senior year of high school finally came, and I had a big choice to make. Johnny and I had already taken on long distance for the past two years, and I had the chance that I could finally go to the same school as he did if I wanted to. Honestly, one of the most frequent questions I was asked my senior year was:

“Where are you going to go to college? Miami with Johnny?”

Shelby and Johnny prom 2015

Prom 2015

At first, all I could focus on was how hard long distance was and how much I would love to go to school in the same town as Johnny again and take on college together. However, I could feel that it wasn’t right. I love Miami and I love Johnny, but I knew deep down that it wasn’t the place for me. Even though every time we have to part ways I miss him right away; even though I only get to see him once a month; and even though choosing Findlay meant that we would now be three hours apart, I knew that the University of Findlay was the place for me and that Johnny and I could get through it. Just because Johnny chose Miami didn’t mean that I had to.

I feel like this is one of my biggest pieces of advice for people taking on long distance relationships: do what’s right for you! Long distance relationships are difficult, and not for every couple, but don’t let the fear of being apart from your significant other keep you from following your dreams … it will all work out in the end!

Johnny and I have officially been taking on a long distance relationship for almost four years now. Living three hours apart is never fun, but he is so worth it! We will be celebrating our five year anniversary in May, and we just celebrated one year of being engaged this Christmas! Anything is possible as long as you put in the time and effort… you can do it!

Shelby and Johnny proposal


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