Personal · Writings

Once upon a time but never a happily ever after

Today, I choose to stay in bed all day and lock myself in my dark room. Today, I choose to lick my own wounds and cry it all out. I will weep and wail until it hurts no more. I could still smell the alcohol in my breath that I secretly hid under my bed and gulped it all last night. The sunlight passes through the window blinds.. I stare at the ceiling. I could hear the cluttering of the utensils in the kitchen, I suppose it’s my grandma, along with it, is the tick tock of the clock, in spite of those sounds, I can hear my own heart thumping loudly while ugly tears are streaming down my face. I look at the clock and it is 10 am already. At this very moment, the man who brought back the smile on my face and turned my sky blue again is getting married.

Pao and I had been together for 2 years and a half. We started as  friends though I knew for him, I was more than a friend. I met him when I had my vacation to my cousin’s place. I was a fresh graduate then, and I was still grieving from my ex who had just passed away.

Pao is 3 years older than me and he always looked after me when my cousin who happened to live alone in her own apartment had needed to go to work. Basically, we were group of friends. I couldn’t count on my fingers how many were we. I was supposed to have my vacation for only two weeks but it was extended because my newly found friends were so fun to be with. And they were a huge help for me to move on with my miserable life after the death of my ex, somehow. Within those day, weeks, and months of being together, our relation had bosom. I reckon the beginning of our relationship was full of humps and bumps. Perhaps what they said was right, I was lonely and I needed someone to be by my side and Pao was there. He was there to hold me when I was crying in the middle of the night because I had a nightmare again. He was there to comfort me when I was drowning from melancholy and anxiety. He never failed to make me laugh.He always left me teary-eyed every time he said his punchlines or weird jokes again. He was such a funny guy, that was maybe the reason why I fell for him. I had no intention to fall in love again after my ex had passed away but fate had its other plan for me, I guess.

As the time passed by, everything was going smoothly between the two of us. We were both okay with our families. We loved each other dearly and we were inseparable ones. I am not saying that our relationship was perfect, most of the time you would see us screaming at each other. Though Pao was sedulous and a type of person you could always count on especially with household chores, he didn’t have a stable job. Until I decided to work overseas. At the beginning, he opposed my decision but I was adamant. I was determined to travel. I admit, half of the reasons why I decided to travel was to be away from him for a while. Pao was so loving, he loved me so much and there was no doubt in that but in some way, it was suffocating. I wanted to widen my horizon and meet new people; to explore the big world of opportunities. I was a big dreamer and he wasn’t. He seemed to be contented on what he had and that usually made me so irritated. We often talked about our future. He even asked me to marry him after my 2 -year contract, and I agreed for I thought why not? we’re going to end up with each other in no time.

I eventually left the country. I was so drunk with the idea of having a happy life and independency that I took him for granted. Our conversations became shorter until there was none. Frankly speaking, it was I who chose to distant myself to him. He sent me tons of messages and I didn’t respond any of them. My friends and family started to bombard me with messages and calls asking what was wrong because Pao was getting hysterical. I didn’t care. I lost my affection. At that time, I truly understood why a lot of long distance relationships don’t work. Finally, after few months of chasing and fleeing, we broke up. I was left confused and he was left hanging. He continuously sent me messages but I left them unanswered. After the break up, Pao drowned himself with alcohol, crying and weeping every day and night. Wicked me! Instead of pitying him, I was furious because instead of fixing himself and find a decent job there he was, drowning himself with alcohol as if it would help him for me to come back. All I wanted was for him to dream a little bigger, it’s not because it would benefit me but because it’s for his own good whether we end up or not at least he has a career.

After almost a year, I heard nothing from him until I had learned from my family and friend that he had a girlfriend. I shrugged my shoulder and tried not to be affected. “Good for him.” I just said after few more months, I heard from my mom that he got his girlfriend pregnant. I was bitterly dismayed. He was supposed to fix himself and proved me that he could be a responsible husband to me and a father to our future children. How could he?! if he still hadn’t figured himself out. How could he support his future family if until now he hasn’t had a stable job enough for a living?! Wasn’t he thinking straight?! I calmed myself and sat down for a while, trying to absorb all the shock. When I thought things profoundly, I realized that it was all my fault, It was I who had fallen out of love. It was I who abandoned him when I was supposed to be the one who encouraged him to be at his best. It was I who chose to end things between us. It was I who had an affair. It was I who had to be blamed..

One year had passed and I returned back to Philippines. I resigned to my job because of some certain reasons. After a week of staying in my hometown. I decided to go back to Laguna and visit my friends even if it meant seeing him again, perhaps could have a proper closure at the same time. In spite of my mom’s strong disagreement of I, coming back there. She told me, he was getting married already and there was no way I could stop it. I was angry about her remarks, I told her I wouldn’t come there to see him and stop the wedding, such things won’t happen, I’d pay a visit because of my friends that I had missed.

While I was on our way to Laguna, my cousin who was driving the car, and I at the back of the passengers seat. The memories of Pao, our sweet memories started to overwhelm me. It was 6am already and the sun started to beam its rays passing through the windows and it blinded me for a moment when I gazed at it directly. I looked at the road that was so familiar. When we were finally approaching the apartment, a sense of nostalgia hit me off. My cousins had their own scheduled at that day. It was Monday, Mariz needed to go to work and Beth needed to go to school. I was left alone. I looked around the house, nothing had changed except there were some furniture added and it was messier than before. I made myself a cup of hot chocolate and sat down on the sofa. I turned on the TV before I plummeted to a deep sentiment but it was too impossible to concentrate on watching when I was feeling excited and agitated all at the same time. I was haunted by our memories. This house that had been our love nest. I saw myself screaming at him, I was totally annoyed and he liked annoying me, I was telling him to bugger off and he was telling me some hard punch line that made me smile in the middle of quarrel. I smiled at the memory. He was always the calm one and I was the nagger one. I wondered how did he put up with me. But that was then, what we had is now hers; not mine anymore.

The night after, I finally met him. I already expected it,however, I was nervous as hell to face him. I wasn’t even sure if I had a face to show to him and to the rest of our friends. We talked and chatted for how many hours, trying to catch up all the things I had missed while I was away. I stared at him and I caught him taking glances at me. The feelings were still there, I knew that. Our friends gave us time to talk. We talked outside. We stared at each other and he broke down. He cried then sobbed. He was sobbing and I knew why. My heart ached to see him on that state. He hugged me and I hugged him back tightly as if we owned the world while he kept saying how sorry he was and how asshole he was for he didn’t know what to do when I left him, he was completely lost and there’s this girl whom he had met somewhere. I would never forget that night, he told me that there’s none he ever dreamed of, it was only me who was his very dream but I have my own dreams and he totally understood. It moved me.

I rubbed his back and told him to hush and that it was okay and we couldn’t do anything about it for it happened already. That time, I was sobbing already. The idea of him, getting married with another girl made me moan. Regret swallowed me whole. But what was the point of regretting when all is said and done? He told me that he still loves me and he doesn’t know what to do and it seemed like the most sensible thing to do was to marry her. I told him that he doesn’t need to marry her if he doesn’t love her but I knew with his answers, deep down his heart, he wanted too and it pained me but I couldn’t do anything. Who am I anyway? I was a part of his past now and she was the present and the future. Who am I to take him away from the innocent tiny creature of his very own flesh? I am nothing but a person in his past.He told me that he’s going to get married at the end of the month and how scared he was. He kept on muttering things like how he missed me, and still loving me all this time but it was too late because he had done a mistake. He has now tied in a responsibility. A lifetime responsibility—being a husband and a father.

His wedding day has come and with a broken heart, I have to accept the fact that our story has ended. He was once my once upon a time but never will be my happily ever after..It’s funny how I always end up grieving in every relationship that I’ve had. I believe that one day, I’ll be fine. I’ll be fine again. But not today and definitely not tomorrow either…

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