Stars fall down in you

And love is only heaven away...

And love is only heaven away…

Exactly ten years ago today, you and I looked at each other for the first time in our lives. We had been chatting and I mentioned I was going to Makati for some reason or other. I had also mentioned that I had never had the chance to read Neil Gaiman. You suggested we meet up so that you could introduce me to Gaiman, believing that I was missing half my life.

Leading up to the meeting, I was so nervous and giddy. It felt like something important was going to happen. When I got off the train station at Ayala, we were texting, where are we going to meet? We actually texted each other that question at the same time. We also reacted the same, “Sync!” we said. The first of many. But that first time, you said, “If this is really a sync, let’s not set a place and see if we still find each other anyway.”

We set a place, though. Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf in Greenbelt 3. I had told you a few days before that I was obsessed with men with large angel wings. And you plopped down a copy of Neverwhere and Murder Mysteries, which was a graphic novel full of naked men with angel wings. I felt that day ten years ago that something very important did happen to me, and that my life was never going to be the same.

When you left me forever, I discovered so many things out of sync. Losing you hurt enough, and suddenly all these things you kept from me came out of nowhere and just hurt me some more. It was very difficult to accept. Where was the man who loved me all these years, who made me feel like I was the only woman in the world? Many times these past four months, I would find myself in a very dark place, unconsolable. Angry. From the start, I forced myself to be the bigger person, the forgiving one. But it just destroyed me, I think. So I decided to stop forgiving you and allow myself to be angry.

These past months, I would involuntarily picture random places in my mind. That corner of EDSA and Buendia. The walkway from Greenbelt to Rufino. RCBC plaza. The friendship route that passes through Philam. The stretch of road that leads to Charlie’s and Poco Deli. The corner of EDSA and Reliance. The outside patio of Coffee Bean in Greenbelt 3. But only the places, never any people or any actual memories. I realise, these are images I’ve captured in my head when I’m on my way to you. So although I don’t want to remember you, my brain has found a way to subtly remind me.

I still find no sense in how and why you left me forever four months ago. Sometimes, I am still angry. But I forgive you. I comfort myself with the belief that for all those years, I was capable of a love so great and true. You did make it easy for me for the first six years. For the last four years, you made it very, very difficult, but I loved you anyway. I find it satisfying that I am capable of that.

And you will forgive me for falling in love with someone else. Maybe it will be as strong as how I loved you. Maybe I will eventually love him more. Maybe not. But I will always remember you. I posted this for you before, and it resonates so much more today than it ever did:

I don’t ask you to love me always like this, but I ask you to remember.
Somewhere inside of me there will always be the person I am tonight.
– F. Scott Fitzgerald
Happy ten years, Bliebie. See you when the world ends.
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