A Love Letter – From Me To You

okay. first things first, i gotta tell you the purpose of why i’m writing this letter to you. sshh! don’t try to react. you listen to what i’m gonna say, am i making myself clear? you’re not allowed to cut me off. i might suddenly forget the things i want to tell you. you’re ready to hear me out now? there. anyway, where were we? ah, yeah. so as i was saying, i gotta tell you the purpose of why i’m writing this letter. okay. i know, i’ve just made myself repeat what i’ve said earlier, but see? you’re doing this to me. sheesh. you aren’t getting hydrocephalus any moment right now, are you? okay. okay. fine. the reason why i’m writing this letter is i need to get this certain feeling off me. i feel the need to blurt it out, because if i’m not going to do that, i think i’m going to be insane. i think i’m going to explode and i don’t know what might happen when that happens. you catch the thought, huh, buddy?

so there, you see, i fell in love. i know you’re so dense, so i assume you ask “with whom”? and i assume i answer “moron, who else? it’s you i’m giving this letter.” whew. now you know. so now that you know, i just want to make some things clear. like what would happen now to our friendship? you’re a smart guy and we both know that what we share in this friendship of ours is way deeper than ever. i mean, it’s like this seed that is our friendship is not a seed anymore, but a full grown tree with its roots deeply stuck into the earth, you get my analogy?

i have never meant to fall for you. it’s just that, things suddenly happened. from merely an infatuation to this disaster i call love. yeah. you know that i was formerly infatuated to you, right? well if you don’t know that, i’m telling you right now, i really was. from the start i thought you were just a pretty face and nothing more. i still think you are now. no, the “pretty face” part and not the “nothing more.” so yeah i still think you’re cute but i’ve realized that there’s so much more beneath than that physiognomy of yours. i like your personality. you are caring and thoughtful. you are so unselfish because of the generosity you have in you. these are just few but i don’t want to enumerate all those good characteristics of yours. you might end up a narcissist after you’ve read this letter. pfft. kidding aside, things got crazy when the sessions started. i’m talking about the drinking sessions, you dope. i dunno. maybe the alcohol has much affected my rational capability and thus, transformed this crush to love. okay, i was just pulling your leg. the alcohol must really have addled my mind now. seriously, it started when the sessions did. i, myself, don’t know what and how did it happen. it just came. maybe because we’re always together and i get to see the side of you which might be unknown to some other people. in turn, you get to see the side of me which i usually don’t put up in front of other people.

i have never meant to fall for you. now, the feeling is still there but it hurts. you might be wondering why am i confessing to you. they say that to stop a certain feeling, you must blurt it out. after you have poured your heart out, things would be easier to accept and it would be easier to let go. if you still hadn’t grasped it yet, i’m saying that i want this feeling to stop. i want to fall out of love. no! i don’t find you appalling or anything. it’s just that this might affect our friendship. i don’t want to lose that gift just because i fell in love. it would be hard for me not to confess this to you. suppose i decided not to tell you this, i know in myself that it would hurt me badly… so much hurt that it will lead me to stay away from you and avoid you. you see the big picture when that happens? our friendship will be greatly affected – in a negative way. do you want that to happen? me, too. i don’t want that to happen. i cherish this friendship between us so much that i have decided to tell you what i’m feeling and put a stop to it at the same time.

it would be funny to say that i’m letting you go because in the first place, you never did become what i call mine. you can’t let go of something you didn’t have. maybe what i should be saying is, i’m letting myself go. perhaps that way, there won’t be any complicated and confusing thoughts and feelings between us. just plain, pure great friendship. is that clear? we’re friends, okay? i am moving on. it hurts. it is hard, but then, i won’t sacrifice our friendship. don’t worry about me, i’m going to get past and over you. we’ll be fine.

p.s. i’m lying. this is a prank.

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Sino Si Erlynne?

Simple, tahimik , mahiyain at ubod ng bait. Maamo ang mukha, naka-eyeglasses at laging naka-ponytail ang mahabang buhok. Salutatorian nung high school. Siya si Erlynne, ang all-time high school crush ko. Hindi ko alam pero siguro nga, siya na rin ang first love ko.

Freshman ako nung nag-transfer siya sa school as a sophomore. Hindi ganun kaganda si Erlynne pero malayo naman sa pangit ang kanyang itsura. Maputi siya at matangkad. Maganda rin ang posture. Pero secondary lang yung mga characteristics na yun sa main factor kung bakit ako na-attract sa kanya – which is yung ngiti niya.

First day pa lang ng classes nun. Habang nakapila ang buong school at naghahanda para sa flag ceremony, kanya-kanya namang conversation ang mga estudyante. Freshman ako at sophomore siya kaya natural magkatabi lang ang pila namin. Napansin ko agad si Erlynne dahil sa maputi at matangkad siya. Hindi tulad ng mga kaklase niya, walang kausap si Erlynne. Tumitingin lang sa paligid at seryoso ang mukha habang inoobserbahan ang mga kapwa estudyante.

Nagulat ako ng magtama ang aming mga paningin. Hindi ko alam kung dedma na lang o ngingitian ko pa ba to make her feel welcomed sa bago niyang school. Pero bago pa man ako makapag-decide, ngumiti siya sa akin. It was one demure smile.

Natapos ang first day ng class at sa mga sumunod pang araw, lagi kong hinihintay ang ngiti ni Erlynne—na natatanggap ko naman at nakapagpapaligaya sa kaunting bahagdan ng aking buong araw.

Hindi nagtagal ay naging kaibigan ko si Erlynne. At sa laking tuwa ko ay mas madalas ko ng masilayan ang kanyang ngiti, halakhak pa nga kung minsan. Tuwing sabay kaming kumain. O sa aming mga kwentuhan. Sa sabay naming pag-uwi. At minsan pa nga, weird man, tuwing magka-text kami. Ewan ko ba, parang nararamdaman ko yung real thing dun sa mga smileys na sinesesend niya sa’kin.

The whole time na high school kami, hindi nalaman ni Erlynne na crush ko siya. Pinakatatago kong sikreto ang pagtingin ko kay Erlynne. Ang lihim na pagtingin kay Erlynne ni torpeng Ako. Hindi niya nalaman na labis akong natutuwa kapag nginingitian niya ako.

Huli ko siyang nakita nung araw ng graduation niya. Mas maganda kaysa sa nakasanayan kong nakikitang itsura niya. Kulot at nakalugay ang kanyang usual na naka-ponytail na buhok. She was wearing some make-up at bagay sa kanya ang aquamarine dress na suot at lalong nagpatingkad sa kanyang pagkaputi.

At minsan pa, nagtama muli ang aming mga paningin at gaya ng nangyari nung first day ng class, nginitian niya ako. Yun ang pinakagusto ko sa lahat ng suot niya sa araw na ‘yon.

Walong taon ang lumipas at sa loob ng mga panahong iyon, hinahanap-hanap ko ang ngiti ni Erlynne. Nagtrabaho siya sa Canada pagkagraduate niya ng college pero may communication pa rin naman kami. After kong grumaduate sa course kong Veterinary Medicine, kasama sa mga balak ko ang sundan siya sa Canada at doon magtrabaho. Mababaw man na dahilan pero sa ganun ay makikita kong muli ang mga ngiti ni Erlynne.

Hindi natuloy ang binabalak ko. Hindi ko na minsan pang nakita ang demure smile ni Erlynne.

Patay na si Erlynne at first death anniversary niya ngayon. Namatay siya last year at the young age of 24 dahil sa leukemia. Naaalala ko nung huling gabi ng kanyang lamay, habang tinitingnan ko ang payapa niyang mukha sa loob ng kabaong, tila ba may ngiti ang kanyang mga labi na katulad sa mga ibinibigay niyang demure smiles sa’kin noon. Naluha ako at pabulong na sinabi, “Mamimiss ko ang ngiti mo, Erlynne. Salamat nga pala sa mga ‘yon.”

Di ko maiwasang mapaluha muli. Sariwa pa sa aking isipan ang alaala ni Erlynne at ng kanyang katangi-tanging ngiti. Kasama sa mga luha ng alaala ni Erlynne ay ang aking mga luha ng panghihinayang sa hindi ko pagtatapat na naging mahalaga sa akin ang kanyang mga ngiti. Na hindi lang ang kanyang mga ngiti ngunit siya mismo ay naging mahalaga sa akin.

Ngunit ganun man ang kinahinatnan ng mga pangyayari, kuntento na akong tanggapin ang katotohanang binigyang kulay ng demure na mga ngiti ni Erlynne ang kaunting bahagi ng aking buhay.