Wednesday, September 12, 2007

clean getaway

caught an episode of grey's anatomy last monday. napanood ko na iyun sa dvd but still, i watched. claring and our new housemate were upstairs, so mag-isa akong nanonood.

and then this song was played in a george-izzie scene.

Clean Getaway

I made my place by the door.
I didn't know what I was waiting for.
Felt just like home.
Except no grass, no yard, no pictures.

I could see across to the park.
And there were friends, they were laughing hard.
They looked just like my home.
With no face, no name, no voice I'd know.

I finally made it. I made a clean getaway.
I finally made it. I made a clean getaway.

I met someone at the bar.
He had a great smile and a great heart.
He felt just like love.
Except no fear of losing, and it wasn't tough.

I finally made it. I made a clean getaway.
I finally made it. I made a clean getaway.

And I miss you, I miss you every single day.

sabayan pa ng quote ni izzie kay george na: "I can say Hail Marys until... until I turn into Mary, but I still miss you. Not the sex. It was not tragic, George. I will live without it... but I won't make it if you can't be my friend."

i think you have an idea what happened next...

***

"normal lang naman ito, di ba? di ba?" i was telling claring in between sobs. i was also texting ching. and i thought i have snapped out of this senti bouts. susceptible pa pala ako sa ganito...

when ching texted me the next day to ask me how i was, i told her: "i've learned that there will be moments that i'd miss him but these moments will eventually go away. and just like waves, they will come back to hit me."

pero oks lang... sanayan lang iyan. sanay na ako.

***
my boss learned about my published article and he wanted to read it. shy talaga ako so di ko binigay. he said, "nabasa na ng buong pilipinas tapos sa akin ayaw mo ipabasa."

then he asked me what it was all about. sabi ko tungkol sa librong nabasa ko, and how it was related to my life. tsismoso talaga ang boss ko, he asked for more details. so i said "basta something to do with heartache."

then he said, "talaga? ano, gusto mo gulpihin natin ang lalaking iyun?" natawa na lang ako. then my boss added, "it's his loss!"

tapos he insisted na he wanted to read the article. kahit draft lang daw nung sinulat ko. ayun, pinadala ko na rin....

sabi ni claring, i-post ko na rin daw dito ang buong article kasi wala na siya sa archive ng star... kaya, here goes...

From Bitter to Better

The heartache in March wasn't my first, but it definitely was the most painful. Not only because it was the latest, but also because I had it when I thought I knew better.

The pain was debilitating and at an age where I was supposed to have gained enough lessons from the past heartaches, I wallowed in bitterness. And I could have stayed there in the pit of misery if it weren't for a book that I chanced upon in the piles of discounted paperbacks in a mall.

The title was screaming at me, Bittergirl: Getting Over Getting Dumped. I grabbed the book, browsed the inside pages and read a passage that made me rush to the counter and discreetly pay for my new bible.

I was ashamed to admit it but buying that book was an affirmation that I had finally accepted what really happened —I was dumped.

You see, I was dating this guy for more than a year. We weren't an item…we were just dating. It was more of a pseudo relationship. Ours was what the creators of Friendster had in mind when they came up with the "It's complicated" status. You know the drill…more than friends but less than lovers. Almost a relationship, but not quite.

I knew from the start that it was a convoluted situation but I couldn't stop whatever it was we were having. Maybe because I was hoping things would get better, and that we could somehow unravel the intricacy of our set-up and progress to a more defined relationship. Plus I have to admit it was one hell of a ride — bumpy and yet exciting, with all its unexpected twists and turns. So I held on. And the more I stayed, the more difficult it was to let go.

Although it wasn't a real relationship, the emotions were real. And the inevitable happened — I fell in love. And when it ended, the pain was certainly real.

I was the one who walked away but I ended up feeling dumped because after going out with him for more than a year, he still couldn't give me what I wanted.

What happened next was a replica of a scene from the movie When Harry Met Sally, where Meg Ryan is sobbing to Billy Crystal. I thought that he was just one of those guys who couldn't commit. I discovered that he just didn't want to commit to me because a couple of months later, he had a relationship with someone younger and several pounds lighter.

To say that he hurt me is an understatement. I never thought that somebody could walk into my life, make me feel alive and then take with him every ounce of my joie de vivre.

For someone who has collected broken hearts for souvenirs (as Blue Magic crooned), I thought I could deal with this heartache the way I did in the past — cry and mope for a while, binge, shop for shoes, and write, write, write. Then I would be on my way to recovery.

But this time, it was different.

They say writers can handle pain well because we can write about it, and the more we write, the more detached we become. But then there are pains that never go away, no matter how many times you write about them.

And even if he appears in all my blog entries and online column, even if I write about him and the pain he caused, at the end of the day, I still pine and cry myself to sleep.

To make things worse, I was writing scripts for a youth-oriented show brimming with kilig moments and mushy love songs. How can someone with a broken heart write heartwarming stories for other people? How can an angry person inspire the audience with sappy love-conquers-all teleplays?

I felt I was the most pathetic loser. It was just a broken heart but it seemed I lost every reason to wake up and go on with my life. I was angry and bitter and vengeful. I imagined various ways to get back at him and used expletives in several languages while talking about him.

And I started to hate myself because, hey, before that heartache, I was a strong, smart and sane woman. Whatever happened to that woman?

But when I read the book, I was comforted because the book described everything I was going through. It was as though authors Annabel Griffiths, Alison Lawrence and Mary Francis Moore were watching me deal with the heartache and they recorded everything and turned it into a book.

I realized that what I was experiencing was normal, and that it happens to everybody. And so I accepted my fate. Everyone gets dumped. Even the strongest and smartest get rejected. And I was one of them.

The authors are not your usual love gurus who teach you how to let go and move on: delete his number and never call him, drown yourself in movies and music, be with your friends, stop reliving memories with him, and so on…

Through the book, I learned why it's okay to mope and wallow in despair; that it's normal to be resentful and plan revenge (as long as they remain fantasies); and that experiencing a relapse happens to the best of us.

But the book also assures that no matter how painful the experience is, I will soon get over this. Just as long as I open myself to the possibility that things will get better, that life goes on, and that I shouldn't let myself be defined by the heartache.

Beyond Bitterness

It has been five months since that fateful day in March where I saw our undefined relationship's demise in the shape of a younger and slimmer girl. I can't say that I am finally over him or that I have finally moved on. But I am getting there. I can now listen to love songs without staring into space and thinking of him. I can now say his name without breaking down or going ballistic. I can even go to the special places that we had been to without a twinge of his memory.

I admit there are still moments of weakness and breakdowns, and they happen just when I thought I had snapped out of the depression. There are days when I am reminded of him by a scent, a sound or a sight that has absolutely nothing to do with him. And then I will start to miss him and relive the past.

But I have accepted that these are just moments and that, eventually, they will go away. I have learned that there's nothing I can do to stop them but it's how I deal with these moments that matter.

What do I do whenever I am haunted by his memory? I write. I write about our past — pleasant or otherwise. I write about him and how he made me feel when we were together. I write about how he hurt me and how I managed to crawl back into a normal life after my painful episode with him.

If there's one thing I gained from being dumped it was learning to put these experiences in writing and including them in my scripts. Some of the dialogues I used were culled from our actual conversations. Several scenes in my scripts were from real incidents. It sounded bad but, napagkakitaan ko rin naman siya. In a way, I got my revenge.

But the most important thing I learned from the book is that the sweetest revenge is to live a good life after being dumped. That is actually what I am doing now —living a better life without him and recognizing that he's the one who's really missing out.

I used to think of him as the ass***e who strung me along and broke my heart, but now I see him as the person who did me a favor by dumping me. Because the rejection allowed me to discover that I am actually stronger and smarter than I thought I was. We can't stop ourselves from experiencing pain but it's what we do with the pain that makes the difference. In my case, I profited from my painful experiences. Being hurt is something we can't stop from happening but being miserable is always our choice.

Song of the Moment: Clean Getaway by Maria Taylor

Quote for the Day: "i can say hail marys until... until i turn into Mary, but i still miss you. not the sex. it was not tragic, george. i will live without it... but i won't make it if you can't be my friend," izzie to george in grey's anatomy season 3 (time after time episode).

What I learned Recently: "But I have accepted that these are just moments and that, eventually, they will go away. I have learned that there's nothing I can do to stop them but it's how I deal with these moments that matter."


2 comments:

Anonymous said...

hi miss noreen, i was listening to jesse daniels yesterday and one of her songs reminded me of you. listen to her song "it's no wonder". sobrang makakarelate ka. hahaha. -- kalan

kiyoko said...

nabasa ko yung article mo sa diyaryo mismo - sabi ko sa officemates ko na kaibigan ko yung writer. with pride pa yun - deadma na kung tungkol sa heartache yun sinulat mo. ang ending, nasa broadsheet ka mare! bigtime! yahoo! o saka na celebration ha, alam ko pinambili mo ng MGA libro yung nakuha mong fee pero may mini celeb din tayo dapat sa Baguio - kasabay ng binyag ni Chubi :)