The love affairs that drive our myths are powerful, epic connections that create wonder and chaos in equal measure. I’d never thought my own life would contain anything that momentous. A quite sort of love, a house, a child – I didn’t aspire to much.
Love found me. Impossible and irresistible all at once. I fell in love with the gorgeous artwork and inspiration of a man I had never met in person. Divided by the Atlantic, and with me already married to someone else, it didn’t seem like a feeling I could pursue. But we kept talking, sharing work and ideas, very carefully not courting each other. We created huge stories, and there is a strange magic in that kind of shared creativity. There were all kinds of complications along the way, other people who passed through both our lives, times when we drifted away from each other a little, but we held those threads of connection.
Then, in the summer of 2009 Tom asked me if I would consider going to America for a Cthullhu convention some time, to promote the work. I didn’t even have a passport, and had never been out of the UK. But I thought about it. We thought about it together, and we dared to consider the consequences of being in the same space. After that, there was no going back. I crossed the Atlantic and we had a week together. It took us slightly over a year from there to jump through all the hoops. A year full of dramatic changes and challenges, that tested us both – for me, it meant going far beyond where I imagined my limits would be in terms of what I could feel and endure. Webcams kept us just on the right side of sanity, but to see and not be able to touch… to only have words to offer through those hard times. A friend of mine died, and those thousands of miles of distance were cruel indeed, needing to be held. But we survived, and stayed true to each other. We jumped though the legal and paperwork hoops and slightly over a year after our first meeting in person, Tom arrived in the UK. On Wednesday the 29th of December, we married.
No one in their right mind would volunteer to suffer. But at the same time, the trials we face teach us and make us stronger. In ease, we seldom find the true value of things. After all that we’ve been through already, I will never doubt the strength or sincerity of this relationship. We have been tested, and in proving true to each other, have gained far more than I can put into words.
I’ve seen, this last year, how others have responded to our story. The support from friends, family and wider community has been tremendous. Folk all over the world who know us only through our work and online presence have been there to cheer us on. There is magic in this, a sense of wonder and connection that ripples out in all kinds of ways. To those of you who have supported us with your words, actions and thoughts, we are both profoundly thankful.
I feel I have been given an opportunity here, unlike anything else in my life. Tom and I have managed to do a great deal working across the Atlantic, but being together, the possibilities are huge. This is not the end of a romance story, it is (I promise you) the beginning of something even more epic.