TIMEHOP: Part 2
III. The Post-
The start of the never-ending.
“It’s not that I’m already over with it — or him — . No, not really…
It’s that I’m moving on, setting myself free from what’s pinning me down, scraping off what’s been keeping me vulnerable, weak and strangled.”
We can’t always dodge at the balls. We can’t always hit the ball back to the opponent. Or there won’t always be a buzzer-beater winning shot. The final score is an uncertainty, waiting to receive its last remark.
You don’t have to keep a room for missed opportunities. Chances should always be taken is what I’m saying. But keep in mind that they won’t always lead to victory. Sometimes you just have to have it for the sake of experience. Then from there you must become stronger, learn.
Wander and get lost, go on. Be curious and get disappointed. He’ll always bring us to wherever He destined us to be. Have faith. Go on.
Published: September 26, 2015 (date to use as reference)
A month and 2 weeks ago, I was close to dying. I was, I really was. The pain that I was enduring was exclaiming, threatening. I was living in a coma and what’s worse is that I was aware of myself. I was fully aware what I’ve been going through, what I couldn’t do and what I should do instead. And I’d always let the pain absorb me, choosing not to do anything about it. I’d look in the mirror with a hundred-pound indistinguishable life form at the reflection. What have I last eaten? WHEN have I last eaten a decent meal? When have I changed my clothes? When have I last taken a good bath? When have my eyes last looked fine?
A month and about a week ago, I’d slump against the cold sheets of my bed then stare into nothingness until my eyes become too tired. I’d tell myself over and over that I can’t move on and that it’s impossible, like a broken record on a paging system. Napakalakas at nakakarindi.
The intensity of the emotions that was imprisoned inside me quickly tangled itself around my heart tighter and tighter day after day. Questions started to cloud my mind. Could-haves and should-haves started to haunt me every freakin’ second, tailing every step that I take and move that I make. Para akong hinahabol ng kadiliman kahit anong takbo ko papalayo. Hindi ko alam bakit ako ang pinupunterya’t tinatakot.
Perhaps being alone in the house, with no job, no money, and no friends to constantly talk to made it a lot more depressing. I was going nuts.
Exactly one month and 4 days ago, I went (out) to see everyone. I went to see ‘people’ since I haven’t really seen anyone else apart from my sisters and father. My social skills began deteriorating.
But who was I kidding? I knew who I wanted to see. I knew what really got me there. Maybe, just maybe, I used the ‘missing everyone’ card as an excuse to really pin through with my agenda. At the back of my mind, I was bitching over the lame excuse I had to make everyone — including myself — believe in. But don’t get me wrong, I really needed to see them. I needed to be remembered that I still exist. I really missed everyone — and the world, to be more accurate — like heck.
My eyes were still like a magnet to his presence. I could pick up and sense where he’s at. Like a radar — a high-accuracy radar. I was still familiar with his stance, his form, the curve of his shoulders, the details and the firmness and hardness of his back, the way he walks. I bore my eyes long enough onto the image whenever I had the chance. The longer I stared at it, the more I wanted to swallow the last ball of shame I have for myself and walk up to him, curl my arms under his shoulders and smell the scent I have been missing so much. I wanted to feel my weight on his back; I wanted to feel my skin against his; I wanted to feel his breathing, and my heart beating. I still wanted him.
Whenever he was near, it felt like I was falling. It felt like my chest was digging a hole onto itself. I was thirsty for him. I know I shouldn’t be.
I decided to leave. I decided to walk away before I could do anything stupid. I bid goodbye to everyone. I said goodbye to him. “Uy, una na ‘ko,” I said as I suspended my hand mid-air, expecting for his. The minute my palm landed onto his, I wanted to reach for him and hug him the tightest that I can do. I miss you.
I walked away without looking back.
One month and three days ago, I succumbed to the idea that was less believed and done. Sabi nila, para makamove-on, pilitin daw kalimutan. Huwag gumawa ng kahit anong makapagpapaalala sakanya, magalit, mag-sariling buhay. I didn’t.
Every now-then and then, I still checked what he was doing. I was updating myself what he was up to. Even if he already told me to stop. I guess it didn’t matter whether it would hurt me more or not. You know when you just have to do something because you can’t not do it? Like it’s both a need and want at the same time. But I was assuring myself that I would only do so if I am ready, if I am confident enough that I wouldn’t break anyhow no matter what.
Nobody knew what I was doing. I didn’t want to tell anyone. I kept the business to myself, I was afraid what they’d say. Whatever they would have me do, I know I won’t be doing it. I wasn’t ready to want to do it yet — forget him.
Ginawan ko yung sarili ko ng timetable. Gumawa ako ng sarili kong gantt chart pero open-ended. Walang finish date. Ang condition lang, basta matapos lahat ng tasks. Running tasks lahat pero hindi pwedeng hindi matapos. Yon ang condition.
It’s okay. Let him be. Then let yourself be also, I thought, Forgive and forget.
Exactly a month ago, I was still manufacturing my own bullets, crafted with insanity and grade-A stubbornness. I was carrying a Russian Roulette at the back pocket of my jeans, ironically, at the safety of my own home, loaded with my very own bullets. The gun always pointed at the temple of my head every time I would think of — or see about — him.
It was a matter of luck whether I’d get hurt or not at the shot. Sometimes it would feel fine — “Nah, not feeling anything. Praise the Lord’ type of days — , but sometimes it would hit me hard and my head would explode, chunks of brain meat scattered on the surface of my existence. A very classic Russian Roulette’s game indeed, I was playing. Dangerous game.
But I guess because it didn’t feel so bad, collectively, because I was already having my better days, it meant I was close. I was nearing the end of the tunnel — towards the light once again. Or maybe not close, but I was progressing, at last.
Marami pang iba dyan. Mahaba haba pa ang lalakarin. Marami pa. Sarili muna ang unahin. Marami pa at dadating din yan. Tiwala. Oras.
4 weeks and one day ago, I went out more. I went out of the humongous cage that I was torturing myself in for the past week. I ate sweets, I read more, I slept more and this time with more peace. I started to work more on my writing, brainstorming for my future entries. I was walking with a lighter baggage that time. Focus on those that wouldn’t make you remember how much it hurts. For example, why it wouldn’t have worked out anyway [next]. I pondered more on the things that would make me rather forget than hope.
I fangirled over this new TV series On The Wings of Love. Iniisip ko nalang, dadating din yung Clark ko. Then I even downloaded three movies of my choice: Starting Over Again, One More Chance and My Amnesia Girl. On the first day, I tried to watch them all. I became a fugitive of my own heart. And then afterwards, I looked up at the pictures of us I still had in my laptop. And I would push myself to cry until it became involuntary. I was torturing myself. I was doing it on purpose. Para masanay. Para magsawa.
Kaya ko naman. Parang nagagawa ko na, sa wakas.
August 29, I met new people. It was a spontaneous night and I ended up sleeping over at a friend’s house. I wanted to get drunk, for old time’s sake. But I was also a little too tired, and uneasy to get dazed around a bunch of people I do not know. I dozed off, minutes after getting under the sheets.
The morning after, I woke up and found myself staring outside the window. I looked at the sky and into the morning light for a whole fifteen minutes. Mornings like this, I thought, I used to wake up beside him and he used to take me home. I knew that trip down memory lane wouldn’t get me anywhere. And that made the feelings worse because there isn’t anything that I could do. There’s no time travel, no going back to a certain point of time and experience it all over again. I was stuck in there, with smudged mascara under my eyes and booze filling up my body, beside a sleeping anaconda.
I curled up. I wanted to feel small. It didn’t help. I sat up and started to break down and cry. Then fell back to bed, hugged my friend, while hiccuping between tears. When will this stop for real? I clung and I wished my friend would wake up. Disappointed, I sat up again, shivering, and sobbed on my own. Bumara na nga yung ilong ko dahil sa sipon, pati yung uhog ko tumutulo na. Ang sakit na ng ulo ko kasi pilit kong ibinabalik yung sipon ko. Tapos tinawag ko ang kanyang pangalan, paulit-ulit. Puta gumising ka, I thought. Gumising naman, matapos ko sundot-sundutin ng ilang beses.
I just wanted to be asked with that question for I don’t know what stupid reason. I cried harder. “Namimiss ko siya, sobra.”
Tinitigan niya lang ako. Hindi ko alam kung ano ang tumatakbo sa isip niya. Awa? Galit? Sawa? Walang paki dahil sanay na? “Sige lang. Iiyak mo lang yan. Parte yan ng pagkalimot.”
“Ang sakit parin,”
“Wala tayong magagawa, masakit talaga yan.” At ako’y tinitigan niya lang muli.
On my ride home — riding a jeepney — , I was crying. I felt stupid. But to me, it didn’t matter anymore whether people would see me dramatizing on such unromantic time and peculiar place.
I was walking down our street and I thought, I’m still lost.
Magsasawa rin ako kakaiyak para sayo. Mawawalan rin ako ng oras at pake.
3 weeks and 5 days ago, I decided that I should stop thinking about him. I should stop caring whether or not the future can be for us, whether or not this lifetime is in accordance with my hopeful dreams.
“In order for the wound to heal, you have to stop touching it.”
And besides, I will have a work soon. I’d get to think of him less often. I’ll be meeting and mingling with new people. I’ll be busy. I will be preoccupied with so many ‘new’ things I wouldn’t be able to look back. That and my family would do the forgetting. Oh, and don’t forget music.
I tried sleeping better. With God and my great conviction, I will be able to pass through this, my nightly prayer. If it’s meant to be, it will be — NO. If you are for me, you are. If not, then not. Simple as that.
3 weeks ago, I dreamed about him for all the nights of the week. I was irritated. I wanted to get him off my mind but instead, even in my dreams, I can’t seem to. It felt like I wasn’t allowed to. I was quite spooked and annoyed because I wasn’t thinking about him anymore and yet I was still being violently disturbed and trespassed. And then, every dream wasn’t actually bad. They were all good — romantic and light and ideal. It felt real because he was vivid in my dreams and I could freakin’ touch him. It was like we’re falling in love again but in an alternate universe.
Ah, alternate universe.
Or maybe it was because I consistently clung to this inanimate thing in red, for every night ever since. He made me feel better — he made my mornings sooo much better — how his face lay so close to mine, and his hands rest on top of my shoulders, and the softness of his body promises ownership to my fragile heart.
2 weeks and several days ago, I started making this list in preparation for my ‘Why it wouldn’t have worked anyway’ entry. Then another list why he may not be the One for me. Then another list of what I want for myself. Then another list for the things that I must do.
I ate more. Wrote more. It felt good pouring your emotions and forming them into words. This is the best therapy I have ever treated myself to, so far. This and food and keeping myself surrounded with nice people, I knew I am getting there.
Who needs a man? Who needs who rather than herself/himself, anyway?
2 weeks and 3 days ago, I have told myself too many times that I will never be over this. Minsan nga sukang suka na ako sa gasgas kong linya na “Hindi ko kaya, hindi ako magiging okay kahit kailan” na akala mo alam na alam ko na ang kakahantungan ko sa huli. Hindi pala.
No one ever does.
I was aware that I nearly killed myself from not eating and living. What do I look like from another person’s point of view? What would I feel if I saw myself during those bad days and I saw her going through the same thing? What would I have said or felt towards her?
2 weeks and about a day ago, I realized that I still have so much kindness and love inside me. Totoo nga yung sinabi nila, malaki ang puso ko and I have so much to offer, it’s overflowing at hindi nauubos. I might have given away a huge amount of myself that I’ve lost so much, but then I realized I’m more powerful than I thought. I can get back up whenever I want to. I am self-destructive yet self-healing. I seemed helpless because I, alone, can help myself. No one’s going to do it for me.
Sabi nga nila, Paano mo naman malalaman na may pakiramdam ka‘t may buhay kung hindi mo mararanasan masaktan?
Pain makes us alive. Heartbreaks are one of the verification that we are human beings because we are capable of feeling something, all sorts of things. Pain breaks us, and then fixes us.
12 days ago, I am remembered. I am cherished. I know I am still being thought of by the people that I wanted to care.
They know. They know what he doesn’t know. And I’m grateful for that. I was pleased, flattered above all. They know.
11 days ago, I was consistently feeling great.
10 days ago, I suppose I missed him. I thought of him but not as much.
9 days ago, I started writing this.
8 days ago, I wondered. And wandered.
7 days ago, He started to become a blood that dried up on my walls. I have removed his stain off my body. I drank to it, and on my way home, I couldn’t wait to fall asleep on my bed.
6 days ago, I didn’t thought of him. I wasn’t aware I was smiling for quite a long time already.
5 days ago, Everything was new. New place. New people. New priorities. New.
4 days ago, 3 days ago, 2 days ago —
1 day ago, I dreamed of him. But I quickly forgot what it was all about. I just knew he’s in it.
There’s no good in rushing nor being hard on yourself when things don’t happen as you want them to be. Everyone meets for a reason, everything happens for a reason. What is, will be. What is, is.
I know that there may still be bad days but there’s no way I’m starting to square one. I know I’m still missing him and maybe even cry for a few more, but I will be hurting less. I know I may still think of him but I’m on the learning on how-not-to. I am putting an end. I am putting a period. I’m removing the bookmark so I won’t — and be tempted — to read all over the finished chapter again. I will begin writing on a new page — I think I have.
It’s not that I’m already over with it — or him — . No, not really. It’s that I’m moving on, setting myself free from what’s pinning me down, scraping off what’s been keeping me vulnerable, weak and strangled.
Ergo, I shall be fine. I did my best and I tried. I waited, I fought and I took every chance that I had. It was enough. I believe so.
And then there’s God. I know this was part of His plan. And I know He has a plan, for me (for you). I don’t know what it is, but I believe that there is.
When the time comes…