Strike 4: First Mistake, Lesson Learned, First Heartbreak

I actually needed 13 years and an approval from my present (and hopefully, forever) partner to write about this. About who was before him, about my past and how beautiful and painful it was to finally learn to love for the first time in my life. It took me 13 long years, to finally be able to write about one of the most beautiful firsts in my life.

My first love. My first heart break. The One That Got Away. 

Sabi nila, first love never dies, and I believe so. Sa lahat ng ex ko, yung first boyfriend ko ang hindi ako kahit kelan naging bitter. Maybe because it was my fault we broke up in the first place. Yep, everytime na may nagreremind sakin about him, they’d laugh because we were so damn young that time but we fought for what we wanted. Maybe, it’s what “young lovers” do, fight for what they think is right even if it isn’t.

I won’t spill our age that time but we were young. Three years in a relationship, and we thought we’d last forever. Hindi masipag mag-aral yung ex ko, pero when we were, he was determined to be a nurse someday, and work in the US with his aunt, and build his own family, and all that. He showed me he was at least determined. We were happy. We were actually so into each other, we forgot that there is a bigger world out there, waiting for us.

I know his parents and he knows mine. He’d spend Christmas evenings in our home, and I’d talk to his dad like he was my own. His dad, in particular is one of the best persons I’ve ever met. I met his grandparents, I’ve babysit his little cousin. I was best friends with his sister. He’d spoil me with gifts, and chocolates, and anything I’d ever ask him of, but we were young. He’d visit me every Saturday. We’d sneak out during weekdays, and he’ll fetch me from school. We’d lie to our parents, and we’d give not a single damn.

One new year’s eve, he saw me outside our house, talking to boys whom I was only friends with, at least during that time. He was mad. He broke up with me. He’d drop my calls, and leave my texts unreplied. Remember, we were young and maybe, we really did not know what love was. We were selfish and immature.

I tried my best to reach out, but knowing him, and how bad he doesn’t want me talking to the boys he saw me talking with, I knew it was the end. I was sad. I was frustrated. I cried a lot but I moved on. It was the end of my first love story.
Strike 1.

Fast forward to one year after, I was in a relationship with the someone already, again. I forgot about us, about him. But there’s something about fate that plays with us, and we were again speaking to each other.

Were we still in love with each other?But I forgot about us already. But I was happy already.

But why? Bakit ngayon? Bakit okay ka na ulit?

There was even an instance when he came to our house, faced the boy I was with that time, because he heard that this boy was *physically* hurting me. Don’t get me wrong but the chismis he heard was false. Hindi naman ako sinasaktan. Pero yun nga, hinamon nya yun ng suntukan. Jusko hindi ko alam gagawin ko pero nagpapigil naman sya. 

Oo, gagamitin kong dahilan to kahit alam kong mali, pero dahil bata pa nga ako non, I started hanging out with him again. I started talking to him again. May instance pa na yung kuya ng present boyfriend ko noon, would send him a message on YM saying that I am not available to talk to, or would fight him kasi umiiyak ako because of him. Pero we did not end up together again.
Strike 2. 

Another year passed, nag kakatext na kami ulit noon. Imagine, 2 years after the break-up. And you know why? Kasi he asked me to pretend that we were trying to patch things up, kasi yung present girlfriend nya pala, nakipaghiwalay sa kanya. yata. Basta, I do not know the story behind that pero we pretended to patch things up. Dahil nga bata pa kami, at hindi naman naiintindihan talaga ang konsepto ng pag-ibig.

“Baby-ng baby ka parin.”

Bes, baby ang tawag nya sakin dati tapos two years after namin maghiwalay, sasabihin nya sakin yon? Bes, my heart. 

So we texted all day again. We called each other again. We wanted to hang out again but I wasn’t allowed to, atleast during that time. I heard his parents also did not want us to be together again, kasi nga I was in a relationship with someone else. So ang ending, hind parin kami nag work.
Strike 3. 

Hindi rin kami tumagal masyado nung naging boyfriend ko after him. Instead, I ended up with who I am with today and it is with his permission that I am sharing this story. I am in a seven year relationship right now, and bago pa kami tumagal ng ganito, nung nagsisimula pa lang kami, nagkausap ulit kami ng first boyfriend ko but because of a super heart-breaking event.His father passed away.

Three days before his father died, kausap ko pa yung papa nya sa chat. I literally shook when I heard about the news. Tito Jun was like the father I never had. The last time we talked, he told me to do well in the UPCAT, and that he’ll wait for the day I get rich. I was shocked when I heard the news. And take note, not thru him. Kasi we severed our connections that time.

“I heard the news. Anong nangyari? I’m sorry.” 

And we talked. I told him how great his dad was, and I would want to see him for the last time. He gave me details of the wake but what’s agonizing was they had to wait like 20 days or more. And when the body finally arrived, Tito had to be cremated right away and he told me about it. I can remember that, I was with Patrick when he called. We were going to my gown designer because I had to fit a gown for prom. I told him I’ll come to the wake.

But I never did. I never saw him again after this heart-breaking event in his life. After that one last call. After that promise of seeing him and his dad for one last time. Up to the end, I wasn’t able to fulfill my promise. 

I never saw him again after that, until now, and if we ever see each other on the roads, or anywhere, we never talked, nor smiled at each other. We became strangers. Like we didn’t know who we were. No closure. Like we weren’t each other’s first love.
Strike 4.
Last strike. 

Now I find closure through this blog post. Finally, after 13 years, I can write about him.Now, I believe he is happily in love with his girlfriend, or wife, maybe. And I too am genuinely happy with my boyfriend of seven years.

The kind of love I am with right now is nowhere near perfect. It’s not a perfect love, and it’s nowhere similar to my first love. But know what? The love I am with right now, is the right kind of love. The love that trusts and protects. It is the love that doesn’t confine me in my shell, but allows me to discover things on my own, and is proud of me. The love I am with right now allows me to be best friends with another man, the love I am with right now is the love I am travelling the world with, even if we don’t ask permission from our parents anymore, because it is a love that my loved ones also trust. Yes, first love never dies, and now I know why. It’s because it needs to remind us of one of life’s greatest lesson, of forgiveness and kindness, of growth and trust.

Sometimes, we meet people for a reason, and meeting him was because I needed to learn how to love. He taught me how to love first. He was my first love, yet my first mistake, and mistakes were meant to teach us a lesson, and I learned mine.

What I’m saying here is that, sometimes, kailangan nating pakawalan ang mga bagay na akala natin pang-habang buhay. Kailangan natin pakawalan ang mga bagay na pinaghirapan natin dahil may mas magagandang bagay pang darating sa buhay natin. Hindi naman masamang ipaglaban ang pag-ibig, pero kung talagang hindi na tama, at hindi naman talaga tugma, kahit anong gawin mo, maghihiwalay at maghihiwalay pa rin kayo. Iiyak at iiyak ka pa rin kasi masasaktan at masasaktan ka parin.

Pero wag ka mag-alala, kapag pinakawalan mo ang maling tao sa buhay mo, doon darating ang tamang para sayo. Yung aawayin ka, pero hindi ka hihiwalayan. Paiiyakin ka, pero patatawanin ka rin. Iiwan ka, pero babalikan ka rin. Yung taong hindi magdadalawang isip na masaktan ka, kung eto lang yung paraan para maging better ka. Pakawalan mo ang pagmamahal na alam mo namang mali, dahil isang araw, may taong magtatama ng lahat ng mali sa buhay mo.

———————————————————————————

To my first love, my first heart-break, my lesson learned, the one that got away.
To Jio,

It took me 13 long years to even gather enough courage to write about you, about us. If this ever gets to you, as if you’d even want to read it, I hope you’ve already forgiven me for all the promises I broke, and for the trust you willingly gave and I effortlessly shattered. I am happy that I see that we’re both genuinely happy now, and no, we do not need to be friends.

As the writer that I am, I only wanted to document one of the most painful yet most beautiful firsts in my life, and that was finally knowing what it feels like to love and be loved for the first time, through you. I wrote this because I want to immortalize the idea of how who I thought was my first love, was also the first lesson I learned the hard way.I wanted to remember my first heartbreak and how the love that I have right now made me whole again. How the love that we both have right now, are the true kind of love we should forever treasure, and take good care of. The love we used to have is no match to the kind of love we have right now.

We’re both lucky to have met each other, or atleast in my opinion. We’re both lucky to have made a mistake of fighting for what we thought was right, we’re both lucky to have shouted at each other, and to have hurt each other both unintentional and intentionally, because kung hindi dahil sa mga kagaguhan natin dati, sa katigasan ng ulo natin, hindi natin malalaman na mali tayo, at maling tao tayo para sa isa’t isa. Swerte tayo kasi sa pagkakamaling yun, tinuro tayo ng mga durog nating puso sa mga taong muling bumuo sa atin.

Thank you for letting go of us, and of the idea of us together. Because if we didn’t do that, we wouldn’t be pointed to the persons we are with right now, the persons who love us completely, no matter what our past was and who we were. Our life would definitely be pointless together.You are the mistake I’ll never regret making, because you are also the lesson I first tried so hard to understand, and now I get it. I know that your Papa is proud of you and the person you’ve become.

And I want you to know that I am proud of you, too. I want you to know that never in my life have I denied you were my first boyfriend (because yes, dinedeny ko yung ibang kong ex. hahaha). I don’t know much about you now, and I definitely do not know anything about you now, but I sincerely wish that you’ll be filled with all the goodness of life. Your papa surely is proud of the man you are right now, and the person you can still be in the future. I hope you become a father as great as he is, or maybe a better one.

I pray nothing but the best for you.

– E.

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