Shana and Michael:
It all started last July. I was baby sitting my younger cousin Kristian while my aunt was out of town for the weekend. As it was getting late I put Kristian to bed and I began to watch TV... 
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She's From:   United States
He's From:     United States

To me pure love is the highest plateau attainable in a love relationship, a place only a few people are lucky enough to reach.

     
 

I was one of the lucky ones. Arriving there was a bit of a revelation. It wasnít a place I was looking for. I just arrived and said, "Hey, this is different!" The road to that utopia was lined with gold however.

When I first met Sandi online it was "like at first sight" for both of us. I had been in a loveless marriage for many years and was planning a divorce. She was in the midst of difficult divorce proceedings. From the very beginning we confided out deepest secrets to each other in a myriad of long and detailed emails. After all, 2000 miles separated us. Wyomingites donít visit New York, and most New Yorkers donít even know what state Wyoming is in! We both knew that weíd never meet. Complete honesty was easy.
 

 

 



   

 

 
 

We comforted each other through our troubling times by "listening," offering encouragement and understanding. Online, in only a few days, we had each found a new best friend. In a matter of a couple weeks, we knew each other better than anyone else knew us. In a matter of a couple weeks, we knew ourselves better than we ever had. In a matter of a couple weeks, our lives had changed. We were "in love," even if we didnít admit it.

Impossible, you say? Consider that we were both prolific writers. After three weeks of emails, I decided to print out the letters Iíd received from Sandi. One ream of paper (500 pages) wasnít enough. And I had written an equal volume of letters to her. In essence, we had each written a book about our lives, our heartbreaks, our dreams and our dreams that we thought weíd never realize. The little details were left out, but who we each were was in those written pages, and with each page I read I felt closer to the person who wrote them.

It was two months after our first emails that I asked Sandi if she would show me the New York City tourist spots "if I show up on your doorstep." By this time my divorce had been filed, hers was in its final stages.

My heart skipped a few beats when I first saw her. This wasnít a "first date." This was the coming together of two soul mates. Almost as beautiful on the outside as I had come to know her soul was, she exuded elegance and charm in a down home kind of way. I didnít see any of New York City that weekend, for I couldnít take my eyes off of Sandi. On the third day of my visit, I told her that I loved her and wanted her with me for the rest of my life. (Why wait when you know itís right?) With tears of happiness streaking down her cheeks, she admitted that she felt the same way about me.

It was an agonizing but sweet four months that followed, as we waited, 2000 miles apart, for first my divorce, then hers to finalize. The day hers was final, she loaded up her car and began the long road trip from the hustle and bustle of New York to the wide open prairies and towering snow-covered mountains of Wyoming.

If ever there were doubts about whether or not we would stay together, they vanished shortly after Sandi arrived. We meshed. Passions were high. We worked together and played together, but more than anything, we talked. Day in and day out, we sat and talked for hours at a time, never running out of topics, never bored. We were married later that year. (Why wait when you know itís right?)

Our love grew deeper and stronger day by day, and every day I was amazed to discover that I loved her even more than I had the previous day. Our love for each other filled our lives and overflowed into the lives of others. We couldnít dislike anyone because there just wasnít room for that. It was a wonderful place to be, and we wondered if anyone else in the world felt love as strongly as we did. Surely, we thought, in this world of billions of people, there must be another couple as much in love as we were. But we knew what we had was extremely rare. Was this "pure" love? Not quite yet.

This is a true story, and in real life nothing is ever quite perfect. I learned that Sandi didnít keep house as well as I wished she would have. I learned she was a shopoholic. She suffered emotionally from early childhood abuses. I learned that she wasnít perfect in every way.

So my arrival at the pure love utopia came unexpectedly one evening while I was peering over a countertop filled with dinnerís soiled dishes. Sandi was sitting contentedly in her recliner knitting something and totally impervious to the dirty counter. There had been a time not long before when Iíd have wished she wouldnít ignore the mess, and Iíd have simply cleaned it up over her objections. But this time I looked at it and fell in love with her all over again. She left a mess and I loved her for it!

Thatís when I realized my feelings for Sandi had risen to a new level. I call it pure love. No matter what she did from then on, it made me love her more. The fact that Sandi did it made it right, made it good, showed me more about her, and the more I knew about her, the more I loved her.

I donít know how far our love affair could have taken us. We honestly felt we had the power to change the world. The more love we gave, the more we received. It had a snow-balling effect. If we could spread our love to everyone, there would be no more wars, no more crimes, no more anger in the world. But then one night, a little less than four years from our first email, Sandi kissed me on the top of my balding head, said, "I love you," climbed the stairs to take her nightly bath, and joined Godís angels in heaven. I had caught but a glimpse of it.

"Don"