Claire was supposed to spend the long weekend with Franco but because of the kiss, Claire realized that it is not right to spend 2 days with someone who’s in love with her.
That vacation that she has planned is for her to clear her head and not to fall in love again, or to have a rebound guy or whatsoever. Claire wants peace and she wants to free herself from the stress of her past relationship.
“Hey, I don’t think spending the weekend together is a good idea.” said Claire
“Why? But it was all planned.”
“I know. But remember, we planned that when I still see you as a friend but since you’ve confessed, I think you’re not the right person to spend those days with. If you really want me to be okay, you will let me be. I need this Franco, please understand.”
“Okay. If that’s what you want.”
“Thank you. You do know that this is better than keep hurting those people around me, including you, right?”
“Yes. Get in touch once in a while Claire. You do know that wherever you go, you always get men’s attention in spite of not doing anything. Please be careful and talk to me every now and then so I won’t worry too much, okay?”
“I will. Thank you, Franco.”
Claire flew to Phuket alone. She didn’t tell anyone where she’s going. She didn’t take photos. She was there to think. She didn’t even send a single message to Franco, or to anyone.
2 days and it’s time to go back home.
It a perfect day for Claire. She woke up at the right side of the bed. A few things she realized after the long weekend vacation:
- She does not have to live in hate.
- Hating someone for hurting you is a sign of weakness.
- She has forgiven everyone. When she said everyone that means everyone; from the past, no matter how many years have passed.
- She’ll face her fear and begin to test her discipline. There’s no need to block anyone, it is just a matter of discipline and respect to herself.
- No regrets. Everything happened for a reason. She has to accept that pain is part of everyone’s life, for them to become stronger and more firm with their principles.
- Principles. Yes. Principles. A broken heart should never lead her to doing anything that she might regret in the future.
- Make peace with her past, move on and face the future with pride and more love.
After having thought of everything, Claire rushed to her work table and turned her laptop on. She remembered writing her New Year’s resolution around the same time last year. She wanted to check if she has accomplished what she has written last year.
Claire wrote last year:
She did pretty well this year in terms of those she’s listed so she decided to make a check list. Reality check, that is.
- I will be the best person that I could be.
I’ve given the best version of myself to everyone. I’ve tried to become better if someone say’s I’m doing something wrong. Hmn.. I was at my best when I was with John.
- I will give the best love and will never get tired of loving people.
I did. I loved him so much. I’ve given all that I know can make my man happy. In spite of seeing the relationship to not work, I never stopped holding on – even without constant communication. I kept my words.
- I will give the best relationships, bring out the best in all the people I love and care the most.
I might have failed on this one but at least I’ve tried my best. Maybe, it’s just not meant to be and maybe it’s all about the clashing personalities.
- I will be confident as I always had been. There will be no room for insecurities, depressions and anxiety.
I have always been the confident girl. I do not want to be compared to anyone because I know how different and rare of a person I am. If you had me in your life, I know you can never find someone else like me. Never. (Confidence is the key.)
- I will ditch everything that is capable of causing stress and sadness.
I did. No further explanations needed.
- I will look at life in the most positive way.
I might have thought that life is unfair, but I managed to get up and realize what I have written last year. Thanks to writing, I always get reminded of what’s out there, what happened in the past. They remind me of both the wonderful and saddest things in my life.
- Whatever it is that caused me pain in 2014, I will treat them as a lesson, an experience that made me an even better person.
I did. Always lessons charged to experience.
- If I have given a lot of love this 2014, this 2015, I will give even more.
I did. If you only knew how much love I’d given to just one person.
- Never hate anyone from 2014. They were there for a reason.
I did. In fact, I am now friends with all my exes. Even the evilest of them all and I can even treat what had happened before as a joke.
Ex: O wala ka na yatang hugot/bitter posts ngayon?
Claire: Syempre, wala ka na sa buhay ko e. High five!
- Family first.
Christmas is just around the corner. Christmas songs are now playing everywhere. In spite of losing John, Claire believes that there’s no reason to be sad. She’ll be making the best out of everything and will start all over again. She believes that in due time, the right love will find her. No rush. That the next person she’ll fall in love with will experience the improved version of Claire.
Claire is smiling. The vacation must have helped her a lot.
“I will fall in love again. At the right time. If my ex didn’t do what he did, I will not meet my true love.”
I understand that you are fighting for your man. I understand how it feels like to be cheated on, to be taken for granted. I have felt that too and it was never easy. When I first found out about the Nicole (other girl), I was in denial. I don’t want to accept the fact that someone is cheating. I don’t want the stress, that in spite of all those proofs, I never bothered to try to find out about the truth not until one day that this girl has gotten into my nerves. I have been called names by that “girl”. I looked like a helpless creature trying to fight for something that I should have.
I have become a monster. I lost my poise. I appeared very uneducated to be fighting over a man who cheated on me.
I was a mess. I have been crying for months but I am not yet ready to talk about it. All I needed then were friends who would laugh while I was crying. I didn’t want to go into details. All I wanted then was to cry. I remember a close friend told me:
“If you can’t talk about it, just write it. Anonymously.”
A man when caught cheating will always look like a cute, innocent pup. “It will never happen again, I’m sorry.” And you will be like, “let’s start all over again. Let’s forget that it happened.” But deep inside, the pain’s still there. You are still under the state of denial because you know that what he did can never bring your perfect relationship back.
Trust is very difficult to earn, break it once and you can never have it again.
We always wanted to be that someone our man will choose after all these battles but come to think of it, is he really worth fighting for? Or was it just about feeding your ego? That in spite of having that Nicole, he still chose you. If he chooses to stay with you, it feels good but you won’t feel the peace that you deserve. The pain will forever haunt you. Walk away and let them be. They will never be happy; anything stolen can never make anyone really happy. Trust me on this one; I had once been the other girl too!
As for me, I have learned my lesson. Never will I allow myself to become a “Monica” again. One instance of cheating, I will definitely leave you with nothing. I know I deserve better.
I have forgiven my Adrian, I have forgiven Nicole. But I am not forgetting what they did to me.
“Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.” but never will there be a second chance.
Dear Rebound Guy,
It’s been a while since we last talked. I haven’t had the chance to tell you how sorry I am for what had happened between us but I want you to know that you are not at all taken for granted.
When we started seeing each other, you already know what I have been going through. You already know that I have been holding on to something that does not exist, and so you helped me forget about it and continue with my life.
Being the rebound guy does not always have a happy ending. For some people, yes, they ended up marrying each other because all the love that was supposed to be given to the ex was given to you but we also have to remember that it is not always the case.
Although rebounds help people forget about their exes and move on, it can also lead them to realize that they love their exes so much that no person can replace them. A rebound is all good for broken hearts when the guy has most, if not all, passed the other person’s standards. If you know how far you are, or how far he is as a person from you, then you must know what to do.
I know you have always told me that my ex is far better off as a person compared to you but you are more than willing to take the risk – that you are willing to take the challenge of making your dream girl fall in love with you. But, I am an adult. An adult who no longer believes in the “you and me against the world” quote.
You have made a lot of special things for me, but I failed to appreciate everything because my attention is somewhere else. While you are waiting for me to call you, while you are waiting for me to come home, I was out drinking beers with the thought that I am not happy with what I have been doing. I know and I am aware that you have tried to be with me, to do everything just to be with me and it was me who resisted all your efforts. It is not because I didn’t want to see you. It is because I know how limited your capabilities are in spite of having the drive to see me and I don’t want you to cross that line simply because I know that I am not worth it. Because I know that I am not in love with you.
I cannot really say that I no longer love my ex but I cannot also say that I am in love with you. I am sorry if we ended up like this but I am thankful that through your help, I realized that I am not that person who would choose to be in a relationship in spite of knowing that it will lead nowhere. I wanted to be the truest version of myself to you; because you deserve it, because I failed to love you, because that is the only thing that I can give you. And with that, I want to say thank you. Thank you for staying by my side when I was at my worst. Thank you for loving me. Thank you for seeing that beauty in me which I myself failed to see. Thank you for making me feel appreciated.
I didn’t want to talk to you. I didn’t want to show you that I appreciated your efforts simply because I am afraid it might send wrong signals. I have to stay away from you because I can see that I am beginning to destroy you and I can’t afford to see you like that because of me, because of my selfishness.
I want you to move on. I want you to stop loving me. I want you to stop hoping that there will be “us”. I want you to become the person that you once were before you met me. Maybe for now, you’ll hate me for hurting you. I tried to forget him. I tried to like you. I honestly did.
I am sorry but to tell you honestly, I can’t see my future with you in it.
Sundays are for families and to spend quality time with them, our family decided to try outdoor dining.
Our choices: Frank and Charles’s or Blake’s Wings and Steaks
We have been regular customers to Frank and Charles’s. They serve really good burgers, fries and chicken wings and I must say there was no time when I left that burger joint with disappointment.
Since burgers are what we want, we have read a review online about this new restaurant near our place, Blake’s. It is located at Mayor Gil Fernando Ave, Marikina City just beside Omakase, one of Marikina’s famous Japanese restaurants.
Since it’s a Sunday, a long queue should be expected. It’s a three-storey restaurant with the third floor as an open area. We were third on the queue and it took us almost an hour before finally getting a seat for three. Seeing the long queue did not turn me off. That means their food is good making people flock in their small restaurant.
So we waited. We were given a list of their menu. Unlike any typical restaurants when their menu would be on a board or a laminated paper, Blake’s menu is on a brown paper. They will give you that plus a pencil so you can mark your orders and they can prepare everything while waiting in line.
Spaghetti with dried tuyo in olive oil
I must say everything is really good and the price is right. Not that expensive but not that cheap either. Kids will enjoy their burgers and fries, moms will enjoy their pasta and dads will enjoy their steaks. Their menu is complete for the family.
If you want to visit and try Blake’s you can use Waze. It will lead you there. It’s just in front of Petron and Shell, just beside Omakase.
Claire has started packing her things when a knock on the door broke the silence.
“Hi Miss Claire. We didn’t know you’re leaving so here’s a small token from all of us here.”
The agents gave her balloons and a bouquet of flowers with “Good luck! We will miss you!” message on it.
Claire has finally decided to leave the company she’s been with for several years. She will now focus on her work from home job – the job that she took for John – but this time, she’ll be focusing on it for herself. To change her daily routine and live a new life.
She was in tears when she left her office while Franco is in the car waiting for her. When she entered the car, there’s another bouquet of flowers seated at the backseat.
“Oh flowers. Are you going out on a date tonight?” said Claire.
Franco smiled. “That’s for you.”
“Funny. Who are you going out with tonight?”
“I told you. That’s for you!”
“Me? So resigning from my long time job showered me with flowers. That’s weird.” said Claire.
Franco holds her hand.
“Claire, I like you. Since day 1, I have always liked you. I have been seeing you before but it was only a few weeks ago when I had the courage to approach and it is only now when I get the chance to tell you how I feel.”
“Shut up. Franco? Is that you? Hahahahaha!”
Claire’s reaction was not what Franco had expected. He was expecting rainbows and butterflies but it didn’t happen. To get out of that awkward moment..
“So, you’re mobile now. You can go anywhere. Where do you plan to go?” asked Franco.
“I’m not sure yet. I am supposed to attend a conference in Colorado next month and I’m not sure if I’d go.” said Claire.
“I thought you’ve already resigned your job? What’s that for?” asked Franco.
“Yes, I did. But I am still their Consultant and I still represent the company on various Conferences and events. Something like an Ambassadress, I guess.”
A long moment of silence.
Franco thought that he can finally spend more time with Claire. That it is now his turn to become that special person in her life. But after hearing what she said, it felt heavy.
“Hello?” said Claire.
“It’s in the US, and John is there. Do you plan on seeing him when you’re there?” asked Franco.
“John is my past. I’m going there for my future and not to live by the past. I don’t think there will still be a time when I’d see him. At least not in this lifetime.”
Franco was relieved.
“Wait, are you jealous?!”
Franco laughed. “Why would I? We’re just friends, right?”
“Yes, we are friends. We are good friends. Let us not forget that.”
Claire kissed Franco on his cheek. “You are like a brother to me and I am so blessed to have you beside me.”
Girls. Why are girls running after some guy who does not even know how to take care of them? Who does not even know how to compromise? Why are they always after those guys who would cheat with a girl they wanted to marry for a girl they didn’t plan to be with? Why?
While Franco has a lot going on in his head, he didn’t realize that Claire is already back to how she’s like a week ago. Staring blankly nowhere. No emotions.
Franco holds her hand. “You’ll be fine, Claire. You are a beautiful, smart woman. Every guy dreams to have you simply for who you are. You don’t have to be sad for losing someone who did not see your value, your worth. Do you want me to tell you how different you are from that girl? If that will make you feel better, even if guys are not into that, I’d do it for you.”
“You don’t really have to compare us. We’re incomparable.”
“So now tell me, have you gone out with anyone after what happened?” asked Franco.
“Yes and it didn’t last. I am not fit to be in a relationship right now. I’m a mess and if I continue going out with him, I’m afraid I might break him.”
“Did he know about John?”
“Yes. He knows everything. He knows that what we have is for me to forget. All in my advantage. I’m so selfish.”
Franco hugged Claire. Move on and forget with me. I will not ask you to be my girl and I don’t want to be with you as long as you have not forgotten him. I’ll stay with you until that time when you can proudly say you have moved on and you don’t love him anymore.”
“Thank you.” Claire hugged Franco.
“Let’s go try that painting shop nearby. I’m not a painter but if I had to learn it, I will.”
“Really? Your treat?!” asked Claire with excitement.
“Yes.” said Franco.
“Yay! I’ve been planning to go there. I have asked a lot of friends to bring me there for years and now, now it’s actually happening! Thank you!”
When Claire was about to kiss Franco on the cheek, he accidently looked at her so an accidental kiss happened.
To be continued.
Beers. It’s been raining beers.
“Two for the road please!” Claire said.
They have been there for several hours and Claire has not said any words about what really happened. She was just there, pouring all her emotions to every bucket of beer.
“Claire, you’re drunk. Let’s go home.”
“Nope. If you want to go home, then leave. I’ll be fine.”
“No. I am not leaving you but please, you can’t move forward if you won’t tell me what’s going on. If you won’t let it out.” said Franco.
“I’m not really good at that. I’m a writer, not a speaker. I wanted to tell you, but I just can’t put it into words.”
“Then write it. Write your emotions. That’s who you are. What do you need? A pen and paper? A laptop? Tell me. I don’t like seeing you like this.”
Claire is drunk and starting to get emotional. But she’s still firm. She won’t talk.
“Okay. Okay. Give me that pen and I’ll begin writing. Maybe this is the time that I have been waiting for. The time that I can finish what I have started writing 2 weeks ago when we met.”
Franco gave her a pen and paper and Claire began writing.
Dungeons and Dragons. A long moment of silence. Franco focused on his own phone just to entertain himself while Claire writes her emotions.
I never thought that this day would come. This day when I realized that it is no longer healthy to love you; that our love for each other is no longer healthy for the both of us.
You make it look so easy, getting over me and moving on. While I’m still trying to pick myself up, you are already out there, partying and enjoying your single life. You enjoy your single life while I remain on the dark spot because you simply refuse to be forgotten.
There were nights when I am about to forget you and move on. Just when I am already beginning to open myself up to other people, here comes a message from you telling me how much you’re missing me; reminding me how much you love me.
MISSING SOMEONE AT 2AM IS DIFFERENT FROM MISSING SOMEONE AT 10AM OR PROBABLY AT 10PM.
All I want is for you to understand that I am also trying to get my life back. Just like you. But why is it that most of the times you act like you’re completely over me and a minute after you‘ll come back to me when you’re feeling lonely?
I know I have made a promise – a promise that there will be no one else but you no matter what happens, that there will be no one else after you because I don’t need a man and I don’t date just for the sake of dating. I know that. I even remember my exact words. But that doesn’t mean you won’t give me the chance to have my life back, to continue living the life I had before I met you.
I love you. I really do and I always will. But we both have to accept the fact that we failed to make things work; that we allowed a lot of things to get between us. That our love for each other has made us both unhappy with the feeling that we are both trapped in a situation that makes us happy and sad at the same time. We both know that it’s not right to feel two emotions at the same time. We can be happy but we chose to complicate a lot of things and we both made everything worse making us both feel frustrated.
You are that person that I dreamt of spending the rest of my life with. That must be the reason why in spite of knowing that the relationship is no longer working, in spite of knowing that you are already beginning to take a different path – a path that is entirely different from the path that we have both planned to take – I keep holding on. You know me too well. You know all my weak spots and you know exactly how to get my attention. And I. AM. TOO. WEAK. TO. RESIST. YOU.
Read on. This is not all about hatred. In spite of what had happened to us, there are still a lot of things that I want to thank you for.
Thank you for helping me heal the wounds from my past. You do know what I have been through. You know how hard it is for me to let someone in. You know how much I tried to let you in, that after every fight, I tried my best to become better for you. Because of you, it is now easier for me to let people in once again.
Thank you for not talking to me for weeks after our every fight. It taught me how to pick my battles. It taught me that we can’t always be vocal of how we feel. That sometimes keeping our mouths shut can help heal wounds. It taught me to let small things go. It taught me to reserve my words and only use them when I am left with no other choice but to speak. It taught me that not all people are like me who prefers straightforward bullets than sugar coated nuts.
Thank you for allowing me to reach my breaking point. I learned to pick myself up and face life’s challenges with maturity. I was able to clearly see the thin line between loving someone so true and desperation. I learned when to let go. I realized that I am tired, that I am exhausted. That what we’re doing is excruciating.
Thank you for showing the difference between true love and fated love, between good love and right love. This does not need to be explained further. This does not need any supporting facts. I’m leaving this for you to think about. If we see what we had differently, then that gives us the answer to what we really had.
Thank you for making me experience how difficult it is to be in a relationship where only one person is in love, for making me feel guilty of using a clean soul just to get over this chase that is taking longer than what is expected for adults like us. I learned that people like them, if we can’t love them as much as we loved our greatest love, deserves fair treatment. They, too, deserves our kindness and honesty; that we are not supposed to make them believe that we love them; that we have to be thankful that they are with us to help us recover in spite of knowing that they are just rebounds. They deserve to know that we are trying to learn to love them back.
I will miss the old you. I know time will come that the person I once knew will once again happen, but this time, not for me but for someone else. We both know that we have hurt each other so much and we can no longer continue to pretend that we can mend the things we broke because of our respective prides. Please delete everything that will remind you of me so you will not try to talk to me anymore. So you will not miss me. Please block me on all possible ways that I can contact you because I know myself too well to know that time will come that I will miss you and I will call you. Please do not allow me to do that. Please help me move on.
I will miss you. I will miss us, but this has to stop.
What happened next? To be continued.
“Hey, are you going to UP today?”
“Claire?” he asked.
“Oh. Yes. This is me.” said Claire
“Well, I’m not going anywhere today. What’s up?”
“I need a friend.”
“Oh no. I think I already know what’s going on.” said Franco.
It’s been two weeks after the incident under the Fertility tree. Where they met. Since that day, they have been exchanging messages and even became Facebook friends.
Franco rushed to the campus to meet Claire and there he saw her, again sitting under the tree staring blankly at the people from afar. There must be something going on that made her call him like it’s an emergency.
Call a friend.
He was expecting that Claire would open up. He was expecting that Claire will cry but she didn’t. She just wanted him beside her while she’s doing her series of deep breathes.
“So what are we going to do now? Just this? I sit beside you, and you say nothing? C’mon Claire. Speak up!”
“I just need someone to be beside so I won’t feel so depressed. I want to think, I want to analyze a lot of things, while you’re there.” Claire told Franco in a very soft voice.
She is not aware that her normal gestures, the way she talks, laughs and deliver her corny jokes are already making someone fall in love.
“Is it him again? Is this all about him again? Claire, it’s been more than a month. You should learn to accept that it’s over. You should learn to stop holding on to something that’s not real. You should learn to move on.”
The problem with Claire, she always thinks there is something wrong with her. That maybe she’s just overthinking. That maybe she does just not understand everything.
Claire is not even looking at Franco. Her world is on her phone. It’s like she’s in a different dimension. Dungeons and dragons.
“Give me that phone and tell me what happened.” Franco told Claire in a very authoritative manner.
Tears started to fall and she looked so helpless. He hugged Claire.
“Everything will be okay. God has better plans for you. A lot of things can happen. It could have happened because he’s not meant for you and you keep holding on. He gave him the power to hurt you that much so you’ll realize that it’s time to let go.”
She looked at him. Surprised that those words where uttered.
“Look at you. You are so simple yet so pretty. There’s a lot in you that he failed to see. Don’t tell me about his efforts. Those are just words. So you call talking on the phone for hours an effort?”
Thinking that she’s so surprised to hear those words coming from him, he thought of something else to say to break the ice.
“And then you’ll see a good-looking guy right beside you named Franco.”
“Let’s get drunk. I think I need beer.” said Claire.
To be continued.