4 Min ReadLifestyle 02 May 2020
And just like that, the United Kingdom was added to the travel ban due to the Coronavirus. "Could this year get any worse?" I mumbled over Skype trying to not let the tears fall as my husband watched my living room TV through the computer screen.
President Trump was discussing the new restrictions regarding the pandemic. My British husband, who has been waiting on his green card for the last 20 months, and I have struggled with our long-distance relationship and the frustrations that come along with it. (You can get inside scoop in my book "Female. Likes Cheese. Comes with Dog: Stories about Divorce, Dating & Saying "I Do.") An eight-hour time change from Los Angeles to England, scheduling skype dates, flying back and forth to see one another, and the costs that come along with it have been taxing, to say the least. But now being forced to not see each other at all for the foreseeable future? The thought of light at the end of the tunnel suddenly became a dark wet hole I felt trapped in.
I know I'm not the only one out there in a long-distance relationship during this COVID-19 quarantine, but am I the only one fed up about the advice that others have been giving me on how to handle it? How about you try a sexy date night on facetime? Or how about you each buy a plant and watch it grow together? How about no.
Am I the only one fed up about the advice that others have been giving me on how to handle it?
That's like me telling you, "How about you paint the walls and watch it dry?" Here's a thought: How about you and your significant other just be. Remember being in a long-distance romance back in college? It was exciting! They'd come to town and you'd get to show them off to your housemates and at parties Then you'd have the melodramatic goodbye. Nothing was more romantic than that rollercoaster of young love.
But this, this is no fun adulting. From what I've experienced, and all I can offer is don't force yourself or your partner to have these "lists" of things to do, just because you have more free time on your hands. Being present and being quiet is enough. Even if that means sitting on skype for two hours doing nothing while they're in the background. Our minds are already overwhelmed with so many what-ifs, there is no need to stress out our relationship in the process. It is okay to admit to yourselves that this is a shitty situation. The "Positive Pams" of the world are the ones that concern me. Always positive. Always okay. Always happy and smiling.
How about you try a sexy date night on facetime?
What are you covering up? What are you hiding? We are going through so many ups and downs that putting on an "everything's alright" attitude is only fooling yourself in the long run. It's okay to access those emotions and let your guard down, especially to the one that cares about you the most. There's no stage. No show to put on. Know that it's okay to admit to each other there is nothing wrong with having fears about the current situation. My husband and I have accepted that we have no idea when or where we will see each other again, but what does keep us going and what never changes is how important we are to each other and how important our marriage is to each other.
Your friends may be coupled up with their "person" while you sit alone in your apartment. Unfortunately, most of them will not understand your personal struggle of being without your person — sad, but true. There have been countless times I've been texting with friends and they ask the same questions over and over again, and I've given the same answers.
It is okay to admit to yourselves that this is a shitty situation.
Sometimes I wonder if they have even heard me in the past. Those who aren't in long-distance relationships don't know what it's like to go to bed without a kiss goodnight each night or, hell, even go to bed after an argument. I would love to just be able to argue over him playing too many video games during the quarantine and not paying enough attention to me or who is going to clean the bathroom this week.
Let's face it, most people are focused on themselves and their own problems, not yours. But you know who does understand? Your person. I know my husband and I will be stronger when we are together permanently because we have gone through this dire situation and learned about perseverance in one another. I believe those of you out there going through a long-distance relationship whether it's 20 miles, a few states, or entire oceans away know that love is love no matter where you are. Who knew we would be tested in such a way in our relationships? So, write the lists together if you want, or don't. Put makeup on for a "date" or don't. But, most importantly, just let yourselves be.
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3 Min Read
I am a proud Black business owner carrying a line of lip colors for the woman who wants to shine. At Vatarie Cosmetics you can find cruelty-free and vegan lip care products, including clear lip gloss and liquid matte lipsticks. The line is still under development, so there are more products in the making that you'll hear more about soon!
My products are high-quality and it is my dream to take my brand into high-end storefronts across the nation and even across the globe.
I have worked my way into my entrepreneurial career as I did not come from money. The goal of my cosmetic line is to bring excitement to everyone who tries the line. My products are high-quality and it is my dream to take my brand into high-end storefronts across the nation and even across the globe. I believe that with added makeup and a good set of threads, anybody can confidently face the world. I am a proud and firm supporter of the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement and a proud member and supporter of the LGBTQIA community.
There have been plenty of hardships that I have had to face throughout my entire life, the most recent being the recent death of my father who passed far too soon. I have never allowed these hardships to deter me, and won't start now. I will continue to progress and work hard to build my business, knowing that this is what my father would have wanted.
About the Vatarie Line: What It's All About
Upon launching the line, I had the mission of inspiring every human to find their inner beauty and to have fun along the way. With this in mind, my products are designed for people of all genders, races, religions, and creeds. The Vatarie line will have more to offer customers very soon as I am continually working on developing products and expanding the line. In addition to the lip colors currently offered, the line will soon include highlighters, eyeshadows, and new lip gloss additions.
I believe that no one needs makeup to validate themselves, and we are all beautiful on our own. I do believe, though, that makeup can make life a lot more fun. Now more than ever we are living in a world where there is so much sadness and darkness. Sometimes all we need to change our moods and get away from that darkness is something to help us feel better and more vibrant — this is where a pop of makeup and a well put together outfit can really make an impact.
Now more than ever we are living in a world where there is so much sadness and darkness.
I encourage everybody to embrace their inner beauty and inner style, and express themselves no matter what. My line of products is inspired by high fashion and designed to make a bold statement. The running theme across my products is empowerment at every stage and level. I create products that make my customers feel happy, and I ensure I am happy myself with my products before I release every single one. There is no place for cutting corners as I believe in producing the highest quality product.
I bring my sense of humor and quirky personality into my products and you can see this in the names of each item. Take the lip color "Blood Money," which signifies all the money, tears, sweat, and yes, blood that was put into the brand. Let me tell you, it was hard work, and it still is hard work, but at the end of the day, it fulfills me to know the type of quality I am providing. It gives me great pride to create a line of legendary products that will positively affect someone and bring them to a place of self-love and acceptance.
About the Past that Gives My Business Meaning
I have struggled over the years with mental abuse that has left me feeling as if "I wasn't enough." Added to that, being a Black woman in an industry that is predominantly dominated by other races, I had to work harder to get to where I am today.
Coming from a broken home, my family struggled with addiction, making my entire childhood a miserable nightmare. My mother abandoned us as she was being physically abused, and it was up to us the kids to do everything necessary to take care of the home and each other. We eventually ended up living with my grandmother in Miami, Florida. At a very young age, I had to endure physical and mental abuse and was locked up. At the age of 22, I lost my younger sister to gun violence and found myself raising her one-year-old son as my own.
Being a Black woman in an industry that is predominantly dominated by other races, I had to work harder to get to where I am today.
While my past was a rough one, it is what has made me the strong, independent, and vibrant woman I am today. That woman strives to be her best every day and works tirelessly to provide a line of only the best cosmetics products. I couldn't see this while I was living through those bad situations and struggling to grow up, but I can look back and see how I was made more resilient because of my hardships.
As I grieve over my father's recent passing, I become stronger. It is this added personal strength that will push me forward in everything I do and will be reflected in my work ethic and in the development of new products for my Vatarie line of cosmetics.