Mars & Deborah 3:
As Deborah went to the departure hall to fly out of Adelaide I knew that the next few months were going to drag on slowly and that I would miss her like crazy. I just didnt want her to go but that was the reality of the situation. When she got back...
>> Continued




She's From:   United States
He's From:     United Kingdom

Love was never supposed to be this easy for me. Yes it was a distant dream, but I was beginning to think that for me, such a fairy tale could never be a reality.

At 19, I was living on my own and in college so I guess you may not know my reason for thinking that I would never find my prince?

  Ben & Carissa during Ben's visit to the U.S.
  Well I am in a wheelchair and unable at this point to drive. So after I moved out because I felt lonely I used the computer to find friends and just people to talk to. Another thing I liked was that the chair was never an issue. So needless to say I quickly became hooked.

It was in February that I met Ben in a chat room. By this time I had became a regular in a MSN chat room called the secret garden, but it was quiet in there and I got bored that day so I decided to go explore. I found a chat room called Do dreams come true? and thought the name was interesting so I went in. It was there that I found "bert".






His chat nic interested me. I don’t really know why… now I just chalk it up to fate. We talked for awhile and then decided to add each other to messenger. Another thing I think was fate was recently Ben told me that he only start chatting weeks before.

On messenger we talk on and off about any really. There were times we flirted too but nothing went more then friends. Part of the reason for that was that in April I met and got involved with a guy online named Jimmy. Really at the time I thought Ben got bored talking with me, and Jimmy showed an interest, so because of my chats with Jimmy my chats with Ben stopped. 

As the summer went on problems between Jimmy and I started. He would promise to email and wouldn't. He would want to chat and then I would wait online and he wouldn't be there. I would phone Jimmy and the phone bills got more then I could afford. He promised to come and the date kept getting pushed back. He was becoming a person I didn’t think he was. This was very upsetting to me because I shared so much of myself with him. Opening up to people is not any easy thing for me to do, so the more I thought of what I was sharing with him, all I was putting into this, and what it looked like I was getting in return, then more angry I became. I almost decided to give up chatting all together. 

While waiting to chat with Jimmy at times I started to talk to Ben again. Only this time it wasn't just small talk and I have to admit now these different talks with Ben are one of the things that kept me online. We talked about hopes, dreams, goals we had, and the conversations got deep at times. I also would tell him about things with Jimmy and he would just listen not judging Jimmy or me at all.

There are certain things that stick out in my mind that helped me realize I felt more for Ben the just a friend. One of these happened during a chat Ben had with me. I remember we were talking and he told me that he found the greatest girl ever, told me that it was someone that lived far off, and asked me if it was possible. I thought at first he was talking about me, until he told me that it was a girl he visited in Taiwan on holiday. I had no right to but I was jealous and let down. For the first I felt as if I wanted to be the one in Ben’s life. I needed and came to depend on this person at a time in life when I was so confused and felt alone.

Being the thick headed person I am, my confusion only got worse when I decided to ignore what I felt. I was supposed to be with someone else and maybe if I only tried harder to make that work that the problems would go away. I even started calling Jimmy because it seemed to be the only time we would talk. The phone call over the month cleaned out my savings and once it did, I was right back where I started: still barely any communication with Jimmy and still the same feelings for Ben which I was trying to convince my self I was crazy for. Those problems combine with others and home, including an accident that left my brother in the ICU, and my goal of walking, I felt like I was falling apart Ben still chatting with was there through all that. At the time he had no idea how much he was helping a person who thought she was dying inside. I was trying to hide it from people around me and everything I felt inside was tearing me apart.

I thought about giving up the internet and if it wasn’t for my talks with Ben and crying sessions with another friend I probably would have. Things were over with Jimmy although you couldn’t get me to admit that, nor would I admit my feelings for Ben, because I refused to open myself up again to someone like that and have them hurt me.

Then one night I had another one of my crying sessions my online friend “Null” but this time over the phone. He called because he said it was high time I opened open and let out all I had built inside. He told me that he wasn’t hanging up the phone until I did that I cried telling how I wanted to know where I went wrong with Jimmy, that I would never have love the way it was meant to be, and what I felt now for Ben. He told me if that he had a feeling what happened with Jimmy and I didn’t. He told me that Ben seemed to be there for me and really seemed to care. Then he told me that to be happy sometimes you have to close a door on things to see a window God has placed for you. He felt Ben was that window but I had to drop Jimmy to that, I had to be willing to open up or I would never get what I truly want, and in my heart I knew that was Ben. 
I also write to sort out my feelings. So I turned to my poetry for an outlet too with things like these: 

Thoughts at a Crossroads

She hangs up the phone
And wipes away the tears.
She wanted him to be there
To calm all her fears.

She picks up his picture
That is sitting on her desk.
The pain becomes more real
As she holds it to her chest.

She asks herself “Why?
He let me down again.
All I wanted in the world
Was just to talk to him.”

She thinks about the commitment
She made to him from the start, 
And how she felt the day
She gave him her heart.

He made her very happy.
He promised to love her forever,
And no matter what happened
That they will be together.

She began to think about 
Sacrifices for him she has made,
And what she has done 
In order to be with him one day. 

Her family disapproved of him 
Those she had her heart set.
They said it’s impossible 
To love someone you’ve never met.

She didn’t care.
She believed what he said.
And now only broken promises
Keep going though her head.

Then in an instant
Her mind drifts away.
To someone else she has met 
Who seems to make her day.

Whenever she needs someone
He always seemed to be there.
To make here laugh or just listen.
She knew that he seemed to care.

He started as a good friend. 
Now there is something more,
Because what they defined as friendship
Is now different then before.

He still confessed the feelings he has
Knowing that she loves another.
His words now echo in her mind:
“Why can’t we be together?”

She thinks about his words 
And the smiles that they bring.
She knows that there is something new
Tugging at her heart’s strings.

She thinks out loud once more
“Is this suppose to be?
I know that there are feeling here
But is it fair asking that he wait on me?”

Then her thoughts go back again
To the one she is with now,
And she wonders if these new feelings
Are unfair to him some how.

He doesn’t even know there is a chance 
Her heart could be stolen away,
And how there is a risk 
He might lose her one day.

Still she has to wonder
About the choices she has made.
She wants to be happy
So can things go on this way? 

Her heart is at a crossroads
And she wonders what to do.
Should she keep the promise she made
Or seek a life with someone new?

The Impossible Possible

I must be caught up in a fairy tale,
Or one glorious dream.
How else could so much be felt
Only staring a screen?

I look at how far apart we are and think “impossible.”
And yet my heart must still have wings
Because it found its way to yours.
Are feelings blind to impossible things?

I am unsure what will happen next,
And unsure what to make of it all.
But I do know how happy you make me now,
And there was something special in you that I saw.

I know that I think of you by day,
And dream of what could be at night.
There’s a smile on my face because of you
And everything about it all seems to be right.

There are times when I find myself thinking.
If I can only read your mind
Would thoughts and dreams of me be there?
Would that be what I’d find?

Other times I wish you were here now 
So I could show you how I feel.
Because no matter how fast or crazy this is
I hope and believe it has to be real.

How amazing this could be if it works,
But who knows what tomorrow will bring
I do know if I was asked this second what I want
My answer would be you it seems.

You know that I have been hurt in the past 
So lets just take it one day at a time,
Follow what we think and feel at the moment 
And see from that what we find.

I can’t tell you what will happen next
When we travel down that road.
But just making the impossible possible
Sounds like the greatest love story ever told.

Then I guess it was September (by then we talked daily and that isn’t easy with a 6 hour time difference) when Ben told me that that we had be come very close friends, he really liked me, and he hoped to meet me one day in person. I didn’t put much faith in us ever meeting either. Anybody can say that and I had learned that. Well awhile before that, we were joking around one day and I had given him my number. Every once in a while I would joke with him, “So when you going to call?” never thinking he would, and he never did until not long after he said he liked me. So not only did we chat but also by phone when he called. God I remember one time he stayed on the phone with me of 2 hours, that is not as long as we chat usually, but I am sure not a cheap call.

Then first week of October he told me he had the plane tickets to come see me and he would be here November 3rd. I have to say it that shocked the hell out of me. He could tell I was hesitant and asked me several times if this was ok. I told him yeah through, and made plans for my sister to pick him up at the bus station and my friend Melissa to stay with me originally. All of this because my mom and others were going to think I was nuts for letting a guy stay with me who I have never met in person before and in a way I knew they would have a point.

None of this shocked me as bad as a phone conversation we had about a week before he was suppose to fly over. We were talking and laughing. I don’t even remember what was said, but I do remember what can out of my mouth after, “Ben you know I love you to death.” Well I liked to have hit the floor because I told him that and it just came out. But I swear that if I weren’t in this chair I would have hit the floor after what he said to me. “Really?… Well Carrissa, you know I really do think I love you too.” That was followed by weird silence from both of us. I guess because we both knew we had just crossed a line.

The next time I talked to Ben on the phone was when he was in Chicago. He called to tell me that he had missed his connecting flight because it took him 2 hours to get though immigration, he had to get another flight, and he would be at the bus station 7am Sunday. That is when I first thought he was actually serious. 

My friend didn’t end up staying at all, but my stepsister said she would spend the night with me and she and I went to get him on Sunday. Right before I met him I was so nervous I thought I was going to puke. My sister and I both said I was crazy before he got off the bus. Later he said he felt the same. 

We had I swear about 20 or so people call or come by that day. But there were a few minutes that day where my sister left to get something at her house and we alone on the couch watching TV. He pulled a stuffed pooh bear out of is bag and gave it to me because he knew I liked pooh. (I sleep with it now.) He took my hand to hold it we started to talk for a bit and he just leaned in and kissed me. Yes it was a tasteful kiss and very sweet. I knew then that he was feeling the same way I was. That kiss also let me let go of all I was fighting and trying to hide where he was concerned.

Things he did for me were very sweet. It was his idea to get our picture made. I can also remember a morning where he can in and woke me to tell me the sun was rising and asked if I would go like watch it. He wrapped me in a blanket, carried me outside, held me, and we talked and watch the sun come up. He wasn’t scared to help me at all. In fact he offered many times. He even helped me put on my shoes. (Something That I have trouble with) We could be going some where and he would just take my hand or put his arm around me. Ben went to church with me once. He even went and helped me in therapy. Later he told that he watched how hard I worked and felt proud to be with me. He also liked to tease me a lot to and a couple times we argued but who wouldn’t staying with each other 24/7. 

The making up was always fun too. He liked it here so much that he called work, took an extra week off and changed his flight so he could stay. We spent thanksgiving with my family. It was his first because they don’t have thanksgiving there. The Tuesday before he left I went to school and he said he was going to take a bus to the mall while I was in class and he would meet me later. That night I was looking at my mail and he went in the bedroom. He came out, told me he had something for me, and dropped a black box in my lap. I opened a necklace with a butterfly charm on it. Butterflies are my other favorite thing besides pooh. There’s so much I can tell you that we did or that was said but I’d be typing all night.

The last night he was here we stayed up all night and even took a walk to the church because he wanted to go in. We sat in that church and talked. There was some silence (time that I prayed and I think he did too) and tears from both of us. We went home watched a movie, he packed, then held me while I bawled some. I tried not too because he hated to see me cry, but I couldn’t stop myself. I love him and didn’t him to go. He cried too at one point and said he didn’t want to leave. Then he said he loved me, he swore he would be back, and said the thought he would in May as we talked about before. He even left some things here and swore he’d be back to get them. I wanted give him something then. I knew that when he take my hands he liked to play with my rings, so I took my senior ring off to put it on him and told him he can bring it back to me when he comes. About 20 minutes later mom came and we took him to catch his bus. He didn’t say 2 words in the car on the way there. I just cried. He barely looked at me but later he said he couldn’t watch me cry so he sat there thinking. When the bus pulled up he kissed me, told me he would be back, and said he’d call when he got home. When he got out of the car mom said he hugged her and started to cry. I lost it again as I watch that bus pull away. Mom let me stay until I couldn’t see him or the bus anymore.

I bet I cried for a week straight after he left looking around the now empty apartment and remembering all the things felt and shared. My mother and sister both held me like a baby while I cried and sobbed to them saying “I didn’t want him to go.” All they could repeat was “ I am sorry” which didn’t help cus that was what Ben would say to my when he’d hold me while I would cry on him about going back to the computer. I cry when my 2 year old nephew ask where he was because he didn’t understand Ben leaving. That I can say is hardest thing I have ever been through now. 

We are back to chatting every day religiously now and the occasional phone call that he makes. One of the chats we had since he asked what I was doing for valentine’s day. I said I would like to be talking to him. He asked what I thought about him coming to stay for 2 weeks during then. Of course I loved the idea so he now has bought plane tickets and will be here February 9-23. (30 more days now.) He is still coming back in May too for 3 months if he can work it out, and I am planning to go there in December.
Ben has tried to share my love for writing. A poem that he wrote he wrote recently for me tells our story as well:

Love on the Internet

It all started many months ago with a simple hello
We would talk occasionally but just as a friend
At the time, who’d have thought it’d turn out as it has
Certainly at the moment I can see no end

Initially things were slow after that first hello
Both of us seemingly unaware of the future
So much so we had plans to be with others
Then things happened, how I’m not sure

We started to talk more and more
Sitting there for hours staring at a screen
Things were suddenly changing between us
But still we struggled to admit our feelings and come clean

Secretly we both had had feelings a while
Then one day three words changed it all
I love you
Such meaning for a phrase so small

There it was we both knew how we felt
Would this be the start of something new
Where we were both finally where we felt right
Something good, honest and true

The time had arrived for us to go further
To meet in person, how would it turn out
Finally to put a face to your dreams
Was it true love, we were about to find out

Here we were, together as one
Would it be all we had wished
Well it didn’t take long for me to find out
All it took was the first time we kissed

From that first touch I changed forever
For I had finally found love
I was truly happy, more than ever
Because I was with the one I love.


Saturday, 05 January 2002

So what can I say happens next… I can't now. I just know that we both love each other more then we ever thought we could and we both look forward to the to the day when we are not an ocean apart and we are working towards that. All we can do is let the story continue, see where time take us, and hope that it has no end.


>> Continued in Part Two.