hopeless romantic

Do not be mistaken, I am not some do-gooder looking for the ‘right side of Life.’ Nor am I an overzealous Mount Everest climber. I will also quick to disclaim any affiliation made with Yoda or Jesus – my revelations are not that profound to be proclaimed yet. Nor have I encountered any life-or-death situations, no striking of the lotto – none of that sort. So who am I, or what I am trying to say about myself at the least?

I am just a hopeless romantic who has simply chosen, to dwell in her past.

There are many terms coined for our breed today. Words like ‘sappy dreamer,’ ‘stupid airhead,’ or ‘drippy cornball’ – they come in pretty handy when describing me. I especially remember two that were over-rated: ‘You sad , sad , fool’ and the ever-annoying, ‘Hur-hur. But why?’

Here’s where I ask, but why not? What is wrong with living the present, with your past? Move on to the current, throw away our pain and forget what’s past. Who invented these rules anyway? A friend of mine named Cher, was chastised by all (except me) for holding on to her bastardly ex-boyfriend, ‘But why? He cheated on you, that lousy two-timer!’

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Yes, I must admit, I had my doubts about this Casanova.

Nevertheless, I supported her decision to lead a ‘Single, But Not Available’ lifestyle. She waited for him, living her days as it normally were. We’d run the 2.4km route together and she would clock hers under 13 minutes, as usual. In between breaks, we’d laugh at the lameness of our jokes, sing along to the lyrics of Ash and meet up weekly for window-shopping marathons.

Five months passed and prom came. Reunited with Mr. Ex-Casanova, she currently indulges in the hidden pleasures of a long-distance relationship.

Had she not kept him in her heart, I wonder whether this reconciliation would have happened. Like a Playstation game, the stages of surviving The Break-Up can be adjusted according to the varying levels of its difficulty. In turn, those levels ultimately depend on the choices we choose to make.

So after countless coffee sessions and vexing debates, my circle has unanimously agreed. The first and easiest route out, is to find the ‘rebound skank.’ Find someone who is blindly interested in you. It may not work in the long run, but it alleviates the pain of surviving the first week of ‘break-up’ misery. That, we nod, is the most difficult baby step which many of us are unable to take on our way out of hell.

The alternative is to seek solace with the Potential Friend. By the way, this does not mean hooking up in any way possible. A Potential Friend is someone we like to yo-yo our affections with. They are confidence boosters and also supportive mates, because you are in some way, ‘special’ to them. Selfish as it may seem, it remains a popular choice. Undoubtedly, it is the best way to satiate the human need. To be loved or appreciated, without giving back in return – especially when our egos have undeniably taken a turn for the worse.

When all fails, the last option is always and erroneously looked upon as a fallback. It is picking the choice to be alone by ourselves, even at the peak of our downtime. The choice to remain in the place which our partners have left us in, either to reflect or to mourn. Sounds silly already, doesn’t it? When the pensive bug bites, I’d lie back in bed and think, now why would anyone want that? Why walk through prickly thorns if you have a suitor, ready to whisk you away on a chariot from all that pain?

And this is where I met a bonehead.

Bonehead was the guy whom I’ve dated for the shortest period ever. He’s no Prince Charming and neither did we have a fairy tale ending, but I do know one thing for sure: he has taught me to appreciate both sides of the flippant coin called Life. Where I see only yin, he sees also yang. Because of him, I have begun to view the ‘fallback’ of surviving a break-up in new light.

Then, there was this other guy. Let’s call him Numbskull. We can’t pinpoint the specific incident which triggered off our friendship, but we do remember bonding over s ushi . Abstinence became indulgence. Zero meat for Good Friday was substituted by ten thousands of sashimi . It was a funny day.

Numbskull is the exact replica of me – only in the other gender. He brings me coffee, (the way I want it,) Mars bars and Bacio chocolate on good days, more so on bad days. He knows what I eat for lunch or dinner, what I’m drinking at the moment, what my current wish-list is, when I’m pulling all-nighters or fast asleep. Numbskull knows me, just by looking into his mirror.

So why do I, despite my friends’ urging, seize not an opportunity?

When vulnerable, it is too easy to fall prey to temptation and succumb to the slightest bit of attention showered upon us. Too easy when that suitor is there, tending to our wounds. I say this because at times like these, I struggle to keep my head loyal to sanity. The distinctions between ‘like’ and ‘desire’ become substitutable as the lines blur too rapidly for us to pause, to differentiate.

In this aspect, it is hard to explain why I pick the rocky paths. But I only see more beauty in living with one’s pain, than in getting over one’s pain. Sadly, the world moves on too quickly for fear of staying broken. When they call me foolish, I can only blow them a kiss.

This is me, taking on life’s hardships with a skip and a hop. I have chosen to stop time, to venture and pick sunflowers which no one sees from a muddy path. I have reinvigorated with my past, to take on the road less traveled. Carpe Diem?

No thank you, at least not for now.

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