One specific couple virtual photoshoot caught my attention. Gerson is currently in Düsseldorf, Germany, and Jessica, his fiancé, is in Singapore. This situation intrigued me to set a special concept. I wanted to display how this couple is on two different sides of the world but they manage to keep going strong. Even their love story is interesting to me.
The term High School Sweethearts kinda fits this couple, but the story didn’t end there. Back in 2008, they were both high school students in a private school in Surabaya, Indonesia. They were classmates – desk-mates to be exact. They were the best of friends. Just like any other desk-mates, they never missed a day talking and teasing each other. Both slowly developed a soft spot for each other, but no one made the move.
Sadly, that “honeymoon” only lasted for 6 months. Jessica moved to Singapore for her studies. 6 months later, for a family matter, Gerson stayed for a month in Singapore and they spent some time together during his stay. The communication continued even after he left Singapore but, again, no one made any romantic gestures, so it stopped before 2009 ended. Since then, their interactions were limited.
The next year, in 2010, they only met whenever Jessica was in town and friends invited them both to hang out. Once in 2011, when Gerson was coincidentally in the airport when Jessica was leaving for Australia for her studies. Once in a basketball game in 2015 and once again in 2017, at a friend’s birthday surprise. This time, Gerson felt something more and his friends, knowing that he had a crush on her, teased him to talk to her but he didn’t, and Jessica was clueless. Again, nothing happened.
2019 caught them by surprise! They met again at a friend’s wedding in September. They first met at the villa a day prior to the wedding. They started catching up and only after a friend interrupted them and said “guys, take a seat…,” they realised that they’ve been standing in the middle of the room for 30 minutes. Red-faced, they took the nearest seat. Long story short, the following day, the magic happened.
They attended the wedding matrimony and had lunch with some friends. There, they exchanged phone numbers and the texting started… He waited for Jessica to go to the reception venue together. At the party, they strolled along the beach, stargazing, laughing their guts out and Gerson said “today is one of the best days in my life..,” and captured that moment with a selfie together. The following morning Gerson sent Jessica to the airport. This time, they kept the conversation going and couldn’t stop thinking about each other. They once wondered how it would have been had they ever got together back in high school.
The coming weekend, they both happened to be in Bandung. They spent some time walking around the romantic city of Bandung, watching the city lights from the hill and talking about life. Feeling an undeniable connection between them, Gerson asked her to be his girlfriend. Despite knowing that Gerson was going to move to Düsseldorf in a few months, they took that leap of faith.
It was a long distance relationship from September 2019 to January 2020. During those 21 weeks, they spent hours on video calls and accommodated to each other’s schedules – made 17 trips to 11 different cities. Months passed by and being very sure that they’re made for each other, Gerson proposed in November 2019 and they got engaged in January 2020.
February 2020 came. It’s time for Gerson to move to Düsseldorf. Jessica was planning to visit him and explore Europe together in April and in June but this pandemic has caused them to cancel all their travel plans.
So here is the closest they could be for now – separated by the distance, but together in hearts.
“Nobody says it’ll be easy, but it’ll be worth it.”