Caity Phelan could never have thought that the fact that her lover was sentenced to prison the previous year would turn out to be one of the nicest things that could have ever happened to their relationship.
The 23-year-old had been seeing the man who would become the love of her life, Dayne, who was 25 at the time, for only seven months when he made a “poor decision” that resulted in him going to prison.
Caity realised that her attachment to him was too ingrained in her heart for her to simply walk away from him despite the fact that she did not wish to go into the specifics of his crime.
The woman, who is a mother of two and from from Mackay in Queensland, was aware from the very beginning that the path was not going to be an easy one.
Caity's in-person visits can be taxing because Dayne is now housed in a facility that is around 700 kilometres away from where she currently resides.
It takes the eyelash technician a gruelling 16 hours to drive round-trip for only a single hour of service, which leaves her feeling a wide range of unfiltered feelings.
However, the tradition is something that is very important to her, and she eagerly anticipates seeing him once or twice a month, while in the other weeks the two of them have a virtual encounter.
She told News.com.au that “every single second we get to spend together is a treasured commodity.”
I am certain that once he is free, neither of us will ever again take for granted the opportunity to spend time in the embrace of the other.
Before he was arrested, we had only been seeing each other for a total of seven months. I was reduced to shambles.
“My feelings went through the gamut of the emotional spectrum. It was a time of mourning and reflection.
“Everything I did on my own that I would normally do with him was a continual crushing reminder that I couldn't just pick up the phone and call him, or give him a hug,” she said. “Everything I did on my own that I would usually do with him was a constant reminder.”
“I wouldn't wish this on anyone,” the speaker said. It's an awful sensation to have. You have the impression that you are continually wishing away your life in the hopes of drawing closer to the day when they will return.
Caity is only permitted intermittent phone calls of six minutes each to update Dayne on what is going on at home. This is the same regardless of whether she is visiting Dayne in person or virtually.
She writes him impassioned love letters, which often take a long time to get to him and are also opened and read by the guards before they get to him. She pours out her entire heart in these letters.
Caity mentioned that she and Dwayne's connection is stronger than it has ever been, despite the fact that the stringent regulations and unthinkable distance are a major burden on any couple's relationship.
The fact that she could only see her family once a week and had to travel such great distances to do so made things very difficult for her, she added.
Because you never feel like you have enough time, it's natural for you to feel emotional afterward. There are instances when they go days without receiving mail.
“I try to maintain a positive attitude by telling myself that this won't last forever and that things might always be much worse. There are those who make blunders that end up taking their own life.
“It has resulted in our connection becoming stronger than it has ever been. It has helped us see how much affection and appreciation we have for one another.
When people say that you don't know what you have until it's gone, they are speaking quite truthfully. Because he has all the time in the world to contemplate, it has provided us with the opportunity to express our ideas in a more clear and concise manner.
“In the letters that we send to one another, we discuss our emotions in great detail. Because of this, it has helped us communicate more effectively.
Caity revealed that when her boyfriend was incarcerated, many people in her life put a lot of pressure on her to end her relationship with him so she could move on with her life.
However, she stated that she intends to remain at Dayne's side for the foreseeable future and that she is thrilled for the life that the two of them will lead once this situation has been resolved.
“There was a lot of pressure from other individuals to leave him,” said the witness. People are always curious about my reasons for wanting to have a partner behind bars.
“I do it because I love him, and anyone who loves someone will stand by that person no matter what.” I do not condone the decisions that led him to end up in jail, but I am a firm believer that one should take full responsibility for the outcomes of one's own irresponsible behaviour.
“If you genuinely love someone, you don't support them just in the highs, but most importantly, you support them when they're in the lows. That's why I made the choice to be with him,” she said.
As his spouse, it is only natural for me to want to help him overcome any challenges he faces in life.
I stayed by his side because I want to be a part of his recovery and seeing him become a better person, so I contributed to his rehabilitation.
Caity and her boyfriend had their first encounter ten years ago, and ever since then, they have maintained a very close friendship.
But it wasn't until they talked to each other again over the course of the past year that their feelings for each other began to develop.
She remembered, “We met 10 years ago in high school, and although we used to hang out all the time as friends, it never grew into anything more than that.”
“As the years went by, we each led our separate lives and eventually lost contact with one another. Meanwhile, I had two children with the person who is no longer my partner. After some time had passed, we ran into each other again after a previous relationship had ended, and from that point on, we were inseparable. After some time, we started going out together. He adores my two kids just as much as if they were his own.
“He has a great sense of humour and is always up for an adventure. Because he is so loyal to the people he cares about and possesses such a kind and generous spirit, I couldn't help but fall hopelessly in love with him.
Being a girlfriend or wife of someone incarcerated requires a significant amount of bravery and strength.
“It's obviously not for everyone, but those that do it create so much strength and resilience within themselves,” the author of the article said.
It has been said that in order to earn the good days of one's life, one must first persevere through the difficult times.