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Simply Solo Spotlight: The Sky’s The Limit

November 1, 2011

Today, I am honored to have Mark Petruska from Mark My Words join Simply Solo for his THIRD guest post! I love Mark’s writing, his story, his personality, damn near everything about him. But I have to be careful with my adoration – it seems he has a lady friend with whom I’ll need to contend!

Mark is a published writer, and I would love nothing more than for you all to check out his book No Time For Kings. What’s the book about, you ask? Here’s Mark’s summary: While on assignment in Alaska, newspaper reporter Rachel Sullivan stumbles across the aftermath of a brazen attack by a radical eco-terrorist group called Earth Fights Back. Driven by a thirst for notoriety and a desire to protect the planet, the organization is leaving a trail of destruction and dead bodies in its wake while eluding the FBI. When things turn personal, Rachel vows to bring them down herself … or die trying. Sounds intriguing, doesn’t it? Buy it here right after you read and comment on today’s guest post.

Quick shameless plug: Do you have a story to tell? Advice to offer? Did you just have literally the worst date of your life and you must write about it? I’d love to have you as the next Simply Solo Spotlight! Contact me at:

The Sky’s The Limit

This is my 3rd guest post on Catherine’s blog. I only ever planned to write about a date from hell, but then my ex got remarried and that seemed like something worth sharing, too. And then, a couple of months ago, my life changed in a way that was unfathomable, and I realized I had one more story to tell. It’s the perfect ending to what I am calling my own personal Picking Up The Pieces Trilogy.

I fell in love, you see.

To say this was unexpected is an understatement. Not the act of falling in love so much, but rather, who I fell in love with.

It’s a girl I have known for a long time. Almost nine years, to be exact. We met through the blogosphere; reading each other’s words, we became friends, exchanging comments and advice as each of us went through upheavals in our personal lives. We both wrote honestly and openly, from the heart, and our mutual friendship, respect and admiration for one another blossomed over the years. We grew to know each other intimately; when you read somebody’s innermost thoughts for such a long period of time, you develop a true understanding of that individual. I knew her secrets, her dreams and her desires, and she knew mine. I truly cared about her. She was an amazing person – and yet, just a friend. How could it be otherwise? She lived in Nevada, I’m in Washington. I never even gave a relationship with her a second thought.

And then one night, I had a dream. It was passionate and erotic – but also sweetly tender. She was the one I dreamed about, and that blew me away. For two days I said nothing, but the dream had been so vivid and powerful, I finally broke down and told her about it. She was just as surprised as I was, and we grew closer than ever. Still, as wonderfully romantic as the dream had been, neither of us gave it much weight, and never expected it to lead anywhere.

This past March – almost a year and a half after the dream – we finally met in person. She flew up here to visit family, and we went out to lunch. Had a wonderful visit that lasted several hours, and then hugged goodbye. I didn’t think I’d ever see her again. We were both dating other people, and besides, 840 miles separated us. I thought she was a wonderful person and a great friend, but nothing more.

So, when she planned another trip up here in August and wanted to get together again, I was pleasantly surprised. Our frequent texts had taken a bit of a flirty tone lately, but then again, we’d never really shied away from that. It seemed fun and playful, but innocent. Right up until the moment she dropped a bombshell and admitted that she had feelings for me. I honestly could not have been more surprised. I was technically still dating somebody else, though we hadn’t seen each other in ten months. Long story, not worth rehashing, and it certainly wasn’t a relationship in any tangible form. But I told her as intrigued as I was by her admission, we couldn’t pursue anything. She agreed, but still wanted to get together for dinner, so we did. Afterwards, we returned to my place.

And then she kissed me, and my whole life changed.

That moment our lips met was electrifying. Years of pent-up desire and longing were unleashed. This led to an intimate, amazing night together, one in which we both experienced feelings that caught us completely off guard. Within days, I had broken things off with this other girl. My heart was singing a happy song and, obstacles be damned, I knew I wanted to be with her more than anything in the world. Two weeks later I drove to Nevada to spend a few days with her. We both wondered if our night together, as passionately beautiful as it had been, was merely a fluke.

Turns out it was rocks sign

Despite the distance, we decided to try a relationship together. Between the daily texts and nightly two-hour telephone conversations, our bond strengthened. She came up for another visit last week, and in the midst of those four incredible days together – when I least expected it – said, “I love you.” And for the second time this year, my life was forever changed.

I love her, too. More than words can do justice. People say that long-distance relationships don’t work, but I’m here to tell you they can…and they do. As long as they’re not permanent. She’s got family up here and has been planning to move to Washington for years. And now she is more motivated than ever. Sometime soon – in six months, maybe a little longer – she should be here for good. And when that happens, the sky’s the limit. I see a future with her – and that gives me a warm glow inside.

There’s a lot more I could talk about here. Fate and destiny. The meaning of my dream. The fact that friendships can lead to so much more. But really, there’s only one thing left to say.

I am in love. It happened when I least expected it, and with somebody whom I never imagined.

And if it happened to me…it can happen to you.

Copyright 2011. Simply Solo blog by Catherine Gryp. All Rights Reserved.

26 Comments leave one →
  1. bringdaddyabeer permalink
    November 1, 2011 8:46 am

    Congrats and good luck, Mark!

  2. November 1, 2011 9:23 am

    Oh, Mark. What a great story. Your posts and comments are always honest and heartfelt. I am so happy for you. And I hope you are right!

    • November 1, 2011 10:13 am

      I know it’s a cliche, KD, but sometimes you really do have to stop looking in order to find what you want most.

  3. Kelly permalink
    November 1, 2011 10:52 am

    Congrats, my son was in a four year long relationship with the last three being long distant; so I know it works it just takes alot of work. Hope things turn out for you two, love is hard to find so hold on with everything you have and make the best of it.

    • November 1, 2011 3:00 pm

      You’re right, Kelly…love IS hard to find. And that’s why I intend to hold onto this with every ounce of strength I’ve got.

  4. 2NewBeginnings permalink
    November 1, 2011 11:49 am

    I can’t tell you how much your story is similar to mine! Divorced, long-term relationship, in a relationship with someone who was my best friend for years and I never imagined we would be in a relationship together….I don’t know you but your words spoke deep to me and I appreciate you sharing your story. Love does happen when you least expect it and with the person you never in a million years thought you could have or be with. Congratulation on your new life and yes the sky is the limit!

    • November 1, 2011 3:02 pm

      I’m surprised by how many similar stories I’ve heard since people have found out about my relationship. Seems there are a lot more long distance relationships out there than I’d have ever guessed…and I’ve heard a lot of success stories, too. Those happy endings give me confidence and encouragement. Glad yours worked out!

  5. November 1, 2011 4:50 pm

    What a wonderful story and it renewed my hope for my current situation 🙂 Thank you for sharing it and wish you two all the happiness in the world. It’s truly amazing how a lifes worth of hurt and scars can be healed by the right person.

    • November 2, 2011 12:30 am

      In my case, it felt like a life’s worth of hurt and scars was healed with a single kiss, in a single moment. I get chills thinking about that. 🙂

  6. Satu permalink
    November 1, 2011 6:41 pm

    What a lovely story. I didn’t believe in long distance love but then I met my man who is Irish (I’m Finnish) and it all changed. We were in a long distance relationship for about two years before he moved to Finland last year. Now we are having our first baby in two months. Things haven’t always been easy and it’s sometimes hard for him to be here without his family and friends but at the end it’s all worth it. And soon he will have his own half-Irish boy to bond with. 🙂

    • November 2, 2011 12:30 am

      How beautiful (and hopeful!). Thanks for sharing, Satu…and best of luck to you both!

  7. November 1, 2011 8:00 pm

    I love this post. 🙂

    SO SO SO Happy for you Mark. I wish you all the best. ❤

    • November 2, 2011 12:31 am

      Ahh…THE Sarah Beth. Glad you found my post over here – I was keeping it pretty low key. Then again, you’ve already read most of the scoop over at my blog. 🙂

      And I’m happy for you too, of course. Seems like it’s been a good year for us both!

  8. November 1, 2011 10:52 pm

    What a great feel-good post! Nice to know that the “hopeless” part of Hopeless Romantic sometimes isn’t 🙂

    Thanks for sharing, and cheers to you and your lady love!

    • November 2, 2011 12:33 am

      Thanks, Ben – I appreciate that! I’ve always been a romantic at heart. It’s only lately that the “hopeless” part of that has disappeared. 🙂

  9. November 2, 2011 1:50 am

    Oh Mark… It was your first blog here on solo that led me to you. I must admit I do consider you a friend now- the best kind, the kind that can give and take serious smack! I also must admit to being insanely jealous, not because I want you for myself, you don’t fly and think corona is beer so it would never work 😉 but I’m jealous of those lovey dovey feelings you have with T. I miss that feeling!!! Enjoy every stinking second and I am thrilled for you both!
    Robyn xxx

    • November 2, 2011 12:10 pm

      Hey, it’s my favorite Canadian! Thanks, ET. I consider you a friend, too…this is why I love blogging. It’s responsible for bringing me and T together, after all! I don’t think you have to be jealous, though…you have a wonderful family. I’m sure you can find ways to rekindle those lovey-dovey feelings. Actually, that would be a great topic for a Simply Solo guest post. Not by me…I think the third time’s the charm…but somebody could do it…

  10. November 2, 2011 6:01 am

    Hey Mark , was that just a story or was it something really happened to you?

    • November 2, 2011 12:12 pm

      True story, Frank. I’ve got blog posts documenting it all – and even a pic of she and I together. 🙂

      Trust me, sometimes it all feels too good to be true, even to me…

  11. November 2, 2011 10:14 am

    Awesome, Mark. Just awesome!

  12. November 2, 2011 11:06 am

    Beautifully written, Mark. I always considered long distance relationships to be taboo. Low and behold, I met the man of my dreams, and we spent the first year of our relationship long distance. It was easy, because we loved each other so much. They really are possible, and with the right person, don’t take much work. What a wonderful story, we’re all so happy for you!

    • November 2, 2011 12:14 pm

      Thank you so much, Brittany! And I’m happy to see one more example of a long distance relationship that worked out. You’ve hit the nail on the head when you say, “It was easy, because we loved each other so much.” I get that. It does make it easy!

  13. Todd permalink
    January 10, 2012 3:05 pm

    You all should check this video about a blind date out. It’s very funny and true.


  1. Among The Stars « Dreams Collide.

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