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Friday, March 30, 2012

Believing Like A Boy

I remember when it was still so easy for me to trust my heart. I miss those days.

Last Sunday, I listened to an eighteen-year-old boy tell me how he was falling for a guy he just met. In the past year, he’s had seven relationships, all of which ended when the other guys have had their way with him. He was broken-hearted after each one, particularly after realizing that those men he entrusted his heart to were really only after sex. And yet there he was once again, all giddy while he was telling me about how sweet and smart and kind this new guy was. He did not care that they met only a few days before. All that mattered was that his heart was once again skipping beats whenever he heard that guy say his name. And I couldn’t help but notice how his eyes glimmered with hope that this guy might finally be the one he’s been waiting for.

I would normally just dismiss that boy’s feelings as just another impending heartache. He’s just a kid after all, naive and easily fooled by the empty promise of a happy ending. I, on the other hand, have several years’ worth of stories that can pop those stupid floating hearts. Life had repeatedly hammered into my head that love is not about butterflies and fireworks, but rather a contract that needs to be pinned onto the wall and reviewed every day that I wake up.

But there was something about the way that boy told his story that captivated me. The way his eyes sparkled, the way he couldn’t help smiling whenever he said his guy’s name, and the way his voice was laced with hope were just too beautiful for me to turn my eyes from.

“He makes me happy. That’s the only thing that should matter, right?” the boy asked me at one point.

“Do you think that’s enough?” I asked, throwing the question back.

“I think so. Yeah, for me it is. I know that I don’t really know much about him but it just feels right. I should be scared. I should be cautious. But the more I think about it, the more I feel that it’s okay. Falling for him is not such a scary thing after all.”

“I see. So you’re sure that there’s nothing to be worried about,” I said.

“Yeah. It’s never been in my nature to hold back when it comes to these things. I give it everything I have. That’s the only way I can do it,” he said in that determined voice.

That was when it became clear to me: that boy is exactly how I used to be. What he said basically summed up how I’ve been handling my relationships up until last year. I jumped at every opportunity to fall in love and start the walk down the road to ever after.

But I eventually stopped being that boy. I kept stumbling onto dead ends until finally I just gave up. Quota na ako, as I once put it. I gave up on the idea of a magical love story and accepted that everything is fleeting. No one else was up for a lifetime of love, it seemed. People who looked for relationships were in fact only after a constant backup fuck-buddy or a safety net from a life of solitude when they grow old. Or you’ll find one of those few people who’re also looking for a happily-ever-after, but then you find out that everything else about you two is a mismatch. The only way to be happy, it seemed, was to settle.

That’s why the boy’s story was so enchanting. The way he believed that he had finally found the one, it was like finding a part of me that I’ve lost. It was the part that had scarred my heart beyond recognition, that changed me to who I am now, but it was also the part that once made me believe in pure, innocent love. I know I’ve already dismissed that part as nothing more than a phase, a gateway to reality, but somehow, I still keep hoping that this unbelieving and calloused version of me is the phase, and that the Nishiboy who once believed in true love will turn out to be the reality.

But I’m afraid the boy will have to wait a little longer for his true love, because the guy he has fallen for this time is just like the ones before him. He will have to deal with heartbreak yet again, another scar that will never heal. I can only hope that he doesn’t give up on love just yet and that he doesn’t turn out to be someone like me, who treats love and relationship as a contract to be renewed, already too scared to entrust his heart to promises of forever.

36 comments:

  1. I asked a lot of people this question: do you think being in a relationship is a decision that two people agree and work on?

    This post answered it for me Jason.
    You have a great weekend.

    -Rowell

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    Replies
    1. hey rowell. so ano yung nakuha mong sagot? hehe. have a great weekend din.

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    2. that as you grow older, being in a relationship becomes more of a decision than it is of love

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  2. I wish I can have his mentality, I badly need it right now...

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    Replies
    1. i also wish i could think the way he does, even though i know it will get him hurt soon.

      i hope you figure out whatever it is that you need to, anonymous.

      Delete
  3. Don't worry, that kid will become like you eventually, older and a little less naive. But whether he, or even we for that matter, become wiser? Well, we'll see. =)

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    1. i had a feeling you'd comment on this entry. haha. isa ka actually sa mga naisip ko nung sinusulat ko to. you commented that love is not a feeling but a decision. i'm still deciding on that.

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  4. Love is like crazy, you do the same thing over and over again hoping for a different ending. :P

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    1. but if you do it with someone else, the ending might be different. =P

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  5. We, all of us, used to be that boy. And at this point in his life, he just have to make his own mistakes and, hopefully, learn from them.

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  6. learning experience. we learn, we know, we grow. a little each time.

    letting the head rule over the heart is being wise. being wise will not make us happy. in matters of the heart, the heart decides. it's the heart's domain.

    being happy and wise is ideal. but we can be one or the other.

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    Replies
    1. i agree. some people claim to have both, happiness and wisdom. i don't believe them either.

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  7. You are so sweet to help someone else and to encourage them.

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  8. He also reminded me of myself, maybe 7 years ago.... when everything is full of flowers and butterflies. When my philosophy was "I Love You, to whoever comes", not knowing im in for a grand heartbreak. Cguro thats the way it is... the way we learn... the way we mature. :D nice postie!

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    Replies
    1. yeah. everything turned out good for you, too. that's reassuring.

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  9. And so the cycle begins. You start young and hopeful, get broken and jaded, then you start breaking other kids' hearts. Oww.

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  10. Dear Nishiboy,

    It's a truly inspiring piece.
    I find myself in the same spot. But more on a different level.
    Talk about what's love and what's sex?.. Are they different or are they same?.lol
    My feet fits in perfectly in this article.
    Compliments to this piece, it touched me.

    Until then,
    Keep well and keep writing.
    TC. God Bless.

    With care,
    AngelSweetooth

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    Replies
    1. hey angel! good to see you here. hehe. as you can see, i spew out a lot of emoness. lol.

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  11. I kept stumbling onto dead ends until finally I just gave up. Quota na ako, as I once put it. I gave up on the idea of a magical love story and accepted that everything is fleeting. < ------ WOAH!

    exactly what im feeling now. and i dont it would change anytime soon... eto din sinsabi ko to the guys who end up falling for me. jaded na e.

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    Replies
    1. tama nga si grey sa taas. we, in turn, end up hurting others out of our jaded-ness.

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  12. I know your stand on things kuya Jays yet it still surprises me, and it surprises me even more to know that you've not been too grim on the boy's fate. I thought that you would tell him some generalization based on your experiences. But you didn't. Which means you haven't totally given up on love. Maybe you just need someone to nudge you to some romantic edge. Just saying.

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    Replies
    1. haha. well if someone does come, he better come prepared.

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  13. Just wondering how the other party feels to be put in a "contractual" relationship...

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  14. Bakit ganun? Lahat halos ng nag-comment naging broken-hearted at naniniwalang walang love. Di ko kayo masisisi. Ako din dati nadurog pero nakatagpo ulit ng minamahal at nagmamahal. Love exists and persists. Mailap nga lang

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    1. that's not really reassuring. nakahanap din sila dati, pero nauwi lang sa wala. nakakapagod na kasi mag trial and error na puso ang nakataya.

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    2. Cowardice + hopelessness + betrayal + revenge = nishiboy. Ask yourself why you are on your current state. Your blog post may be persuasive especially for PLU community. Majority had the same trait concoction. But for just a moment, stop playing the blame game. I agree with anon's statement. Love exists and persists. Just like how parents love their children. It's how we handle relationships brought by love that burns us. That's the difficult part. And sadly, that's where most of us stumble. I hope that someday you will see the light.

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    3. markymarkibs, ikaw na naman ba yan? lol.


      "Cowardice + hopelessness + betrayal + revenge = nishiboy"

      i want to comment on this but it simplifies things so much that it's prone to countless misinterpretations. explain it and i might comment.


      "Ask yourself why you are on your current state."

      What makes you think I haven't already done that? Ever tried asking yourself something? Don't always get an answer either, do you?


      "Your blog post may be persuasive especially for PLU community. Majority had the same trait concoction."

      You're not seriously holding this against me, right? I didn't even plan on persuading anyone. Do you see need, satisfaction or action steps?


      "But for just a moment, stop playing the blame game."

      At one point, I just had to stop thinking that there was something wrong with me. I decided to consider the possibility that the guys I was with also did something wrong.


      "I agree with anon's statement. Love exists and persists."

      I know that love exists. I'm still deciding whether it really does persist. I'll figure that out eventually. Unfortunately, two anonymous comments don't have that much bearing for me.


      "It's how we handle relationships brought by love that burns us. That's the difficult part. And sadly, that's where most of us stumble."

      Isn't this a given? I'm already way past this, bro. My issue now is that no matter how I handle a relationship, it always burns. But, as you'll get to read near the end of the entry, I'm still hoping that I'll find a relationship that will NOT burn, wherein my partner and I will both know how to handle things properly.


      "I hope that someday you will see the light."

      Sounds like you're already an enlightened one. Congratulations.

      Delete
  15. I'd like to think there's a part of that boy in all of us and he's just buried underneath layers of experience and jadedness. Someday, I hope to have Robyn's Indestructible as my heartsong. I only hope the same for you.

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    Replies
    1. so your boy is on leave too eh? hehe. a€d imma google that song.

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  16. As usual! Fan nanaman ako ng post mo na to... But I am hopeful that you'll get through that phase.... I'm sure! =) Keep loving... =)

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  17. In a recent feature on Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago, she defined the difference between sex and love; in that sex is a purely biological faction, one that is a direct manifestation of our primal need to reproduce, whilst love is from a mental capacity as much as attraction begins with the mind. Because although we may not choose whether we are horny or not, we can choose whether we become emotionally attached and committed to another.

    Did you know that the French (arguably the most romantic people in the world) do not have a concept of break-up? For them, the choice to remain together is a daily decision a couple makes, that when the day comes that the question of remaining together becomes a negative, the two can ease into separation without the stereotypical withdrawal symptoms, pain and dissatisfaction we usually go through. That before they come into a relationship, the concept of fleeting love and the temporal nature of the human connection has been accepted, not as an eventual death sentence to an only beginning and blossoming union, but as a simple fact of life. That two people can choose to be together, as simply as they can choose not to be.

    We can be romantic without being naive, and be mature and insightful without being jaded and disillusioned. It doesn't have to be black and white, or purist and boolean for that matter. Life is a gradiant spectrum, we can choose what works and applies to us for any give moment.

    So, with this in mind, believe that the detached and the pragmatic view on relationships (or lack thereof) is but a simple temporary condition; one you have chosen to employ to afford you the fortitude and sanity to survive and subsist in this phase of your life.

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