“…I still believe in forever when it comes to love story. I guess, others simply need to wait for theirs,” was Elaine’s comment to a pessimistic note that I wrote on Facebook when I was still new to the sorrow of love.
I came to know her in a desperate attempt to gain knowledge of someone I was deeply concerned about. I never expected that our short, occasional conversations in the social network would open doors to a brand new season of friendship in our lives. Although I have never met her in person, I felt her kindness the moment I decided to reach out to her online.
This love month, I received a gift from her, a treasured story she graciously entrusted with me, a hallmark of a friendship made distant by space, but made close by what we share as truths in our hearts.
This is her love story.
My hypothesis is that our love could be sweeter the second time around. This is absolutely true to me and my beloved Woodroow (with two O’s), since we are “two–old-friends-who-meet-again-somewhere-long-ago.”
High School Sweethearts
I was in junior high school when I met this young, mysterious boy. He came in our classroom everyday looking sorrowful. I later came to know that his father passed away in the same year and that was the reason the rest of his family moved to Cagayan de Oro City for good.
We didn’t experience the “love at first sight” phenomenon, yet he got me infatuated by his wits and his bully personality ― a kind of seriousness with a little foolishness. Ours was not a “tweetums” love story. It was not something I had taken very seriously at that time, but it led our paths to cross somewhere in time.
The Goodbye Kiss
Though I couldn’t fully remember the details of it, he was my first boyfriend and my first kiss which happened at the same time before my high school graduation. He was also the first man to break my heart after graduation. Ironic, isn’t it?
In one of our reminiscing conversations, he reminded me that I said “yes” to him six days before our graduation when we were on our way home from Lim Ket Kai mall. “With that yes, you gave me a kiss,” he recalled.
I knew that a sweet feeling happened to me on that day and I wrote it on a stationery pad which I was supposed to give him on our first “monthsary.” I said “supposed to give” because I’ve unheard from him after graduation. He suddenly became cold. He didn’t talk to me anymore. In my sadness, I burned the pad and all the feelings I wrote on it, until I have forgotten everything about us. He broke my heart. The end.
We went to different colleges and never saw each other again for ten fruitful years of my life. I had my first serious boyfriend in second year while Woodroow reconnected with his first girlfriend according to what I heard from my friends. I have to admit that my new relationship wasn’t that bad. I had enjoyed it in the same way as other college students do. Yet, I also have to admit that personal and professional growth weren’t the aim of that relationship and I failed to build myself to the kind of person I would want to be. Woodroow, if I may say “unfortunately”, had been wounded as he least expected. He had enjoyed his past relationship for a few years, though. Marriage had been, in fact, one of their plans. However, destiny didn’t lead them there.
Woodroow and I traveled different roads and learned different lessons. We may have stumbled at the same point. We may have loved in the same intensity with different partners. Though it may sound cynical, I’m grateful that those past relationships didn’t last forever. If they had, I wouldn’t have my prince back to my loving arms again. That was where the second part of our love story began.
Am I Really Looking For You?
In a Facebook note dated May 21, 2014, I wrote:
“I’m not looking for love. I’m not. No, I’m not. Yet, each time I say this, I always look back to the years I was loving and to the years I wasn’t; to the years I was loved and to the years I wasn’t. It may be hard to admit, but there is really this part of me that searches for a sweet caress, an honest care, and a real love ― a love that would last, a love that is worth what I have, a love that wakes me up when I’m oversleeping on illusions, a love that listens to my every word, a love that would lead me to what is me and would keep me away from what I am not.”
I am immensely grateful to Facebook for its valuable part in writing the next chapter of my love story. It was during the Christmas season in 2014 when I’ve met my high school sweetheart again. We saw each other online and became friends on Facebook.
It wasn’t awkward to chat with your high school classmate and sweetheart, but to be teased in a high school group chat was. Chatting with him privately gave me the chance to know him better. He explained why he became cold to me after graduation. I guess that being too young and selfless way back then was not a crime; it was a forgivable mischief. Besides, it really didn’t matter to me anymore since it was just but a part of my high school life. So, these chitchats went too sincere with good disposition.
“Stupid Is Forever”
Since it was Christmas and Woodroow was in Manila, I asked him to buy former Senator Miriam Santiago’s “Stupid Is Forever”. He did promise to give me one, but I didn’t really take his promise seriously because I simply didn’t expect so. Yet, he did. He went around malls in Metro Manila in order to find the book which had been fast-selling at that time. When it was delivered to me, I was astonished and I asked him what was that all about. He said that he was just compensating what he owed me in high school. Wasn’t that sweet? Or, wasn’t that just one of the so-called signs of a hopeless romantic?
A Second Chance
Ours isn’t a unique story to tell. It is not the kind of romance that would hit blockbuster in theaters. It started all over again simply, yet unexpectedly. I prayed for him in Camiguin last summer; then, we had our second hello’s in a more mature way.
We take care of our relationship by simply knowing, accepting, and loving our differences. [Click to Tweet] He knows and loves different brands; I don’t. He is or was addicted to online games; I am not. He loves slow rock; I don’t. He loves meat; I love cakes. He loves me and I care… I care for him and I cherish the love that continues to grow in us every single day.
Our Church Visits Together
With the love that we share, we are now pursuing an interest that strengthens our bond, and that is visiting different churches here in Mindanao. That is one of the best things I would love to keep recording on my notepad aside from running, eating, traveling…and marrying him someday.
Visiting churches has molded us to become better individuals and better relationship partners. It has calmed our worries that we might not be able to reach our dreams as partners. It also allayed our individual worries ― him not being able to secure a stable job because of some health conditions, and myself not being able to sufficiently provide for my family’s needs and wants. Our church visits, indeed, have strengthened our relationship and have provided us answers to our prayers.
We Believe In Forever
We have found each other again at the second time…at the right time when we have already known ourselves better, when we are old enough to know when love is real.
Our love story is one great dream that we never saw coming. Ours is, as they said, the best story because it is written by God, and we would wholeheartedly let Him continue writing it until we reach our ultimate dream ― FOREVER.
There is forever in us and there will always be forever in Him. ― Elaine Marisol Garces, Ideya ni Elay
About the Author
Elaine Marisol Garces is a passionate learner, advocate, idealist, and educator. She teaches English in high school and lives in Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines.
My Story is a collection of posts written by readers who believe in the power of a story to positively impact other people’s story. It offers a safe space to share your personal life stories, as well as, inspiring adventures and moving insights that interpret and re-imagine what it means to live, love, and share. Tell us your story right here.