Wednesday, March 31, 2010

When Two Become One

"And the two will become one flesh;
So they are no longer two, but one flesh."
---The Bible

Dear K,

Hello my kismet in a parallel universe ;)

I'm well. I agree, a lot has changed. I've become irrelevant. I am no longer single, I'm living with my boyfriend, and have discovered I'm now irrelevant. I don't know exactly when it happened but now, I'm just part of a whole. Not that I'm unhappy because I'm not - I'm in love and very happy, and very scared at the same time.

I just had an interesting epiphany this past weekend when I ran into an old friend and she immediately asked me, "How are you and Joe?"

Somewhere between just me to being with Joe, friendly hello's stopped getting directed to a singular me. It has become "How are you and Joe? What are you and Joe up to this weekend? Do you guys have plans for the summer? You and Joe should come over for dinner", etc. I'm no longer interesting just by myself and when I'm around other single people, I find that I can't share in the same excitement they're going through and vice versa.

As a result, I've become an outsider to 60% of New Yorkers, and still a newbie to the rest of the 40%, which frankly aren't all that exciting! It's almost like, I have to find new friends who aren't single. When singles need new friends, they have a multitude of choices and communities to meet new people--,, All these dot coms are geared towards single people. And it got me thinking, is there a out there?

I'm struggling with an identity crisis that I'm quite happy with. I like being a part of a couple, but I still want to be an interesting, singular, me, which makes me think of friends like you... where conversations can revolve around everything and anything other than boys.

So, lately I've been laying low and concentrating on my current project that requires no interaction with other people. My new apartment - it's coming along really well. My theme is photo gallery with a little bit of a French accent here and there :)

How about you? What have you been up to? I'd love for you to come visit again!


Monday, March 22, 2010

Teach Us to Be Humble

When I was young, my parents seemed invincible. They were my heroes.

My dad was the smartest man in the world who knew the arcane crafts of science and geology and physics. He taught me why the sky turns black during a solar eclipse, how to battle Bowser and save the princess in Super Mario Bros., how to look for Beijing, New York, and Paris on the map. My mom taught me to how to scrub the floor until it turns sparkling white, how to prepare for a history exam so I get a 100, how to cross the street so you don't get killed.

As I grew up, I became more and more independent. I relied less on my parents as I learned new skills and knowledge on my own. I saw the world, studied new languages, went to a business school. I traveled to cities my parents have never even dreamt of going, and I didn't realize I had truly outgrown them until …

My mom and I were talking on the phone, catching up after weeks of not being able to call each other. She was telling me a story about her 70 year old patient who couldn't remember her name when I said:

Kane: Mommy, wala ka na bang ibang kuwento? Pare-pareho na lang lagi ang kwento mo tungkol sa mga pasyente niyo, sa mga students mo. Ibahin mo naman topic mo.
Mom: Aah. Wala na eh.

Days later, my ninang Monette called me. After a while, she mentioned a conversation she and my mom had.

Ninang: Ta, alam mo ba, she felt so bad the other day when you told her bakit wala na siyang ibang kinukwento. Na laging pare-pareho na lang.
Kane: Ha? Talaga?
Ninang: Oo. Sabi niya, "Ano pa man ikukuwento ko kay Kane Monette. Hindi naman ako tulad niya na matalino, na nagbabasa ng mga libro o diyaryo. Hindi man ako mahilig manood ng TV. Yun man lang ang mundo ko."

I felt like someone just punched me in the gut. Nasaktan ko mommy ko. I had carelessly said something which had hurt her. It was not my intention and I asked the question innocently, but without meaning to, what I said forced her to confront her limitations as a person and made her feel small.

It was then that I learned there comes a time when children realize they have outgrown their parents. Sometimes the realization comes in the most unexpected, and oftentimes, painful ways.

I learned my lesson.

So to this day, even if sometimes, I had heard the same story or a variation of it before, I put on my happiest perkiest voice when talking to my mom, and say "Talaga mommy? Tapos? Ang galing talaga ng mommy ko."

Thursday, March 04, 2010

The Lonely Little Boy From Denmark

DV: I want to be happy.
K: Don't we all?
DV: I want to be happy.

He was a little drunk when we met. DV was at a corner of the room, dancing with his friends. He was around 5 feet 7 inches tall, lean, chinito.

K: Honey, cute ba siya?
V: Yeah, boyish cute. Mga type mo.

DV lives in Denmark and was in town for a long vacation. We exchanged numbers and agreed to have dinner Monday night.

K: So, tuloy ba tayo dinner mamya?
DV: Why do you want to see me?
K: DV, relax. It's just dinner. It's not like I'm asking you to marry me.

We went to one of my favorite restaurants in the city. The kare-kare lamb and tinapa Chilean seabass were excellent and we tried a bottle of Chardonnay created by designer Christian Audigier in collaboration with the Montpeyroux Estates in France.

DV is a visual merchandiser for a European clothing chain. We spoke of his work, his family and then our conversation drifted to his ex. I learned he is still sad because of his break-up with his ex.

DV: Naalala mo ba yung sinabi ko sa iyo when we met?
K: Which one?
DV: That I want to be happy.
K: Ah. Oo. Nagulat nga ako eh.
DV: Para nga akong tanga, every time may nakikipagkilala sa akin or nakikipagkilala ako, I always say "I want to be happy. Can you make me happy?"
K: So kelan kayo naghiwalay?
DV: 2004

I nearly choked on my food. 2004?????? That's six years now; an awfully long time. It's not that I don't understand him. Everything he said resonated in me.

DV: "He was the most beautiful thing that happened to me. He was perfect and I was so happy."

How well I know those words. I have seen people take more than a year, two or even three years to heal from a break-up but six years is still quite a shocker.

DV: I was hoping to see him pag-uwi ko. Akala ko uuwi rin siya from Singapore for Christmas. Pumunta pa nga ako sa bahay nila. Hindi ako bumaba, tiningnan ko lang ang bahay niya.

He never got into a relationship after his break-up.

DV: Hindi nga ako nakikipag date eh.
K: So you don't go out with guys you meet here?
DV: Para saan pa? To fall in love eh aalis na rin ako. Eh hindi naman ako nakikipag one-night stand.

Okay, I said to myself. That means no sex tonight ladies.

While driving home, I decided to open the windows to let the cool breeze in. I realized my hair was growing longer and it kept falling into my eyes, blocking my view.

K: Nakakainis. Ang haba na ng buhok ko. Ang gulo gulo na.
DV: Hindi nga eh. Bagay nga sa iyo. Ang guapo mo.

I sat quietly and pretended not to have heard him.
"I'll never love again, oh boy, you've left me speechless," Lady GaGa crooned in the car stereo.

We parked outside his place, talked for a bit more. As I was saying goodbye, he tilted his head sideways, pointed to his cheek, smiled and said "O, kiss muna."

I leaned forward and he suddenly moved his head such that our lips met. His mouth was warm and inviting. I hugged him tightly.

K: Hmmmm, you smell so good.

I realized I missed cuddling. I miss quiet dinners, the feel of a hand in my hand.

When I got home, I received a text from him.

DV: Mr. Reporter, thank you. Thank you for making me happy.

"But I'm a loser in love baby
So raise a glass to mend all the broken hearts
Of all my wrecked up friends."

---Lady GaGa, "Speechless"