I Love You, Công Chúa

I Love You, Công Chúa

No one will come to compare to how much I love you.

I remember the first time we met at UCI and I thought you were older than me. Most of the volunteers at the program were older; I was always the youngest of them all by far. You had yourself so put together in the front. There was always pain in your eyes, in your heart, but you smiled through it.

Remember when I warned you not to get involved with me? I tried to push you away despite it was obvious we clicked. You were stubborn enough to tell me it was your choice to stick around, and did.

You were the first girl I’ve ever put my faith in.

I saw a part of my sister in you. When I found out you were just starting high school I wanted to do everything I could to make sure you didn’t fall into the same path I mistakenly took my freshmen year. I hung out with you and your friends. We became closer. I introduced you to my group of friends and automatically you were the ‘little one’ we all protected.

I mean, one of us had motherly instincts, another always had a thing with fixing people, the other had a very soft heart, and, well, I loved you like no other. I couldn’t bare you going through any pain. I couldn’t stand you thinking you were ever going through anything alone. I still remember the day you told me you learned how to be strong from me – and that itself is my greatest achievement by far.

But, obviously, we’ve come far from then. It’s been four years and now you’re graduating. You’ve grown into a beautiful and strong young woman. You have ambition. You have fire. You have strength like no other. And I can’t be more proud of you.

I can’t wait to see where you go in life. I can’t wait to see how much you achieve and experience along the way. After all, we’re family. You will never be alone in this world no matter how far we stray. No matter what happens, you will always have a home to stay with me. You will always have an older sister who will hold you when you’re hurting and be pissed at everything and everyone who brings you pain. You will always have me to encourage you and support you through all your life predicaments. You will always have me cheering you on to be the best version of you, for you. You will always have me, here, loving you.

Remember that. We are family after all. I love you.

Sleeve

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Signing Up

Signing Up

As a student, I am constantly signing up for classes, beginning a whole new experience with each unit I take. Whether that be the bonds formed by the desire to pull out our hair during labs or complaining and downing coffee throughout the endless nights spent studying, friendships are made and new visitors walk into our lives. Though most of the class won’t stay in touch after each semester is over, there is always those couple relationships in which you wish and pray for things to work out.

When you sign up for a class, you commit to x amount of hours studying (it’s usually never the number you thought you’d be spending, but you know this too); you commit to the hours in lecture and/or lab with your classmates; you sign up for the stress, the worry, the panic attacks, everything that could come with the class; you are there pushing through to make things work despite what happens (unless you have to drop, which always sucks).

Now, I’m thinking, what’s the sign up sheet for friendships? There are constantly people signing up to be your friend, either for a semester or for a lifetime, despite that most of them won’t end up being lifetime rock for you to lean on and share laughs with and be partners in crime or whatever you want to call them.

As someone who never had many friends growing up – I was always the loner, the weird/awkward kid, the one who lived under a rock, the one who didn’t really know how to keep friends – I still find myself not having many friends, but for other reasons. Throughout the life lessons we all are forced to learn as we grow up, some of us getting extremely guarded and isolated for that reason. I am very willing to be there for someone, but there aren’t many people who I would put my heart in their hands. I gotta know that they’re worth fighting for a relationship with, long-term. Looking for the kind of friend you want is way harder than finding the right classes to fit in your schedule…

But, to those of you who mean the world in my life right now, and you know who you are, I’m signing up…for you.

I’m signing up for all the times you are a mess because life’s a bitch. I’m signing up for the nights you need someone to cry to. I’m signing up.

I’m signing up for all the weird as hell conversations that probably have ADD because of how many topics we jump around to. I’m signing up for the conversations people would look at weirdly if they read what we said. I’m signing up for the awesome and careless laughs, the essay-long (yes, it’s not “paragraph-long” but “essay-long”) text conversations catching up with you. I’m signing up.

I’m signing up for the arguments I have with you through the clash we have between logic and emotion. I’m signing up to explain emotions to you. I’m signing up to be patient enough to let you learn what you need to learn, for life. I’m signing up.

I’m signing up for the schedule clashes that come between us. I’m signing up to get frustrated when trying to see you after what feels like months apart. I’m signing up for the days I miss you in my life. I’m signing up for the silence from you and the silence I give you because life happens. I’m signing up.

I’m signing up for the deep, meaningful conversations. I’m signing up for the “how are you”s we squeeze into the seconds we have to catch up at times. I’m signing up for the two minute conversations as we pass each other on campus. I’m signing up for the hours long rants. I’m signing up for late night phone calls. I’m signing up.

I’m signing up for your stubbornness in finding out what’s wrong. I’m signing up to be stubborn. I’m signing up for the advice we give each other. I’m signing up to wish you the best in everything you touch. I’m signing up to get excited when something works out for you. I’m signing up to cheer you on. I’m signing up to listen to your complaints. I’m signing up for you to rant to. I’m signing up.

I’m signing up to be here for you. I’m signing up to listen and learn about your life. I’m signing up to try to understand what you’re going through. I’m signing up to help you as I can. I’m signing up.

And I’m not walking away.

Enroll

One Day…

One Day…

When I have a daughter, I am going to talk to her about healthy relationships. When she gets to the age of liking boys, I am going to talk to her about stable relationships. When she starts dating, I am going to talk to her about safe sex.

Throughout her life, I am going to be there for her.

I am going to try my best to let her know what self-respect is. I am going to talk to her about her emotions. I am going to show her and introduce different methods to express herself. I am going to watch her grow and discover life.

I am going to try to have mutual respect in my relationship with her. I am going to try my best to hear her out and listen to her stories. I am going to stand by her side and let her know she can always lean on me.

I am going to let her have her own life. I am going to let her discover things on her own. I am going to let her have her privacy. I am going to let her be herself.

I am going to nudge her to be her best. I am going to push her to try her hardest. I am going to try to pave a path in whichever direction she wishes to venture to. I am going to be there through it all.

One day, I will be the best mother I can be.

Weak Spot

Weak Spot

We all have that particular love whose flame will never burn out. People say it’s your ‘first love’; others say it’s the love that changed you the most. I say, it’s every love that forced you to grow.

Don’t get me wrong, loving them and being in love with them are two different things. Loving them and wanting to be with them are not always correlated. This rings true when I look back and realize how many people I still love.

Khang – We had the most unhealthy relationship I’ve ever experienced, in friendship or in relationship. But, in some twisted way, I had believed we would still make it through. Looking back, I can still say there’s a fire in me that burns for you. I hope you have the best life you deserve. I hope you find true happiness without your demons following in your head. I hope you find forgiveness in your heart and learn to love yourself; you deserve at least that much.

D.J.M. – We were stuck in a fairytale-like honeymoon whose end was inevitable. Somewhere, deep inside, we both knew we were not meant to be but I had wanted to fight for us because it’s in my nature…I fight for what I love. And, in doing so, I hurt us both more than either of us deserved. Being with you shined light on a part of me I hadn’t known was still there. You showed me I am capable of being forgiven and loved once more. Thank you. I hope you find that good Christian good who will be there with you until the end of time.

To both of you, whether it had been under or over a year since I’ve seen you, there will always be a soft spot in my heart for you. It scares the hell out of me, but I know it’s okay.

You see, these particular loves changed me. I learned things about myself I probably wouldn’t have learned elsewhere in such a manner. I got shown things I thought I wouldn’t have seen. I went into each of these relationships a little different and came out of each one of them as someone different.

Whether it had been that I learned that I was truly not alone, living a life I only thought I was going through, or that I learned I was capable of forgiving myself for things I thought I’d never let go, I changed. Now, looking back, I wonder if I had changed them somehow. But, more importantly, I wonder if they’re in a better place in their lives by now.

For those who still hate their ex to the bone, I can’t understand what you go through. I couldn’t imagine looking back at those who hurt me so and have that blackhole of pain still inside me. I have been hurt and my heart has been broken, but I look back and see the young men I had fallen in love with. These of the people we once loved for a reason, the people we wanted to spend the rest of our lives with at a certain point, the people we would do almost anything to spend one more day with to see them laugh and be happy. These are the people who made us feel irreplaceable, the people who gave us strength to face the world when we were down on our knees, the people who loved us to the moon and back. When I remember all the unforgettable memories we had created together, I realize that I wouldn’t regret or take back that love for anything in the world because, in that moment in my life, they meant the world to me and they still are a treasure I hold close to heart.

They are…those loves whose fire will burn for eternity.

Particular

Play Me. Play You.

Play Me. Play You.

We’ve all played that game.

It’s where you pretend to not be attracted to a person, who is doing the same exact thing to you. It’s where you laugh casually but wish for them to notice how beautiful your smile is or how your eyes shine when you’re happy. It’s where you do the little things to get their attention and then brush it off as if you don’t really care. It’s where the nonchalant gestures are suddenly more forced and more characterized as acting.

It’s where you continue on with the flirting until one of you finally gets the courage to kiss the other, and you feel the sparks fly. It’s where you finally feel safer being yourself in their arms because there is no other place you would rather be. It’s when everyone knows you are in mutual ‘like’ because you stare at each other with googly eyes. It’s when you can’t get enough of their time, their smile, their laugh, their voice. It’s when life feels like a fairytale and the butterflies constantly flutter in your heart.

It’s when you listen to those love songs and believe every single one of them perfectly pictures your movie life with them. It’s when you open yours eyes each morning with a smile on your face because of a ‘good morning’ text you saw that day. It’s when you can’t even go to sleep knowing you get to spend some more time with them the very next day. It’s when you laugh to yourself when you replay your fairytale-like memories in your head as you walk to your car at night. It’s when you can’t help but turn up the radio and scream the lyrics to that cheesy love song you used to hate.

Please, you can’t deny that we’ve all played that game.

My Escape

My Escape

I miss being able to talk to you for hours and hours without end.
I miss being able to call you up whenever knowing that you’d be there without doubt.
I miss being able to go to you whenever I needed a hand to help me up or a shoulder to cry on.
I miss being able to say that my best friend is the BEST.

But, you still are…the best I know.

You put up with me when I was grouchy, when I was moody, when I was stubborn, when I was hotheaded.
You continued to be at my side through my anxiety, through my breakdowns, through my panic attacks, through my meltdowns.
You held my hand and silently let me know things will be alright when I was nervous, when I was scared, when I was anxious.
You dealt with my mood swings, my tendency to hide things, my silence…my life.

You never once told me you were tired of dealing with me and my life.
You never once said you didn’t want to be there for me anymore.
You never once stated that you regret standing by my side through all the ups and downs.
You never once…

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Mistake (n.)

Mistake (n.)

I used to love you with all my heart. I used to love you to a point where it was too much for my own good. I used to put you over everything else. And that was my mistake.

Mistake (n.) – an action or judgment that is misguided or wrong

I remember pushing things aside to make room for you in my day just so I could possibly, just maybe, make your day a little better. I remember taking on your duties and offering to help a lot more than I normally would just so I could lighten your load. I remember lying about my own circumstances and situations in order to brush off my own problems and issues just so you didn’t have to worry about more. I remember going crazy worrying for you, about you. I remember doing so much for you. I remember overthinking many nights and problems because of you. I remember doing things I wouldn’t have done if not for you. I remember pushing myself, my own limits, for your sake. And that was my mistake.

I pretended to be okay and pushed myself to go through the day even with everything I had been dealing with, mentally and physically, in hopes that it would make it easier for you to focus on your work and your day. I pretended that I could do it all in hopes that I could take the weight off your shoulders. I pretended to be fine with some things in hopes that it would make you happy. And that was my mistake.

I asked for you to be there when I needed you. I asked for you to help me through my pains. I asked for you to listen and support me when I needed it. I asked for you to give me your time and heart…because that was what I thought you would want to give me. After all, you had said you loved me most. And that was my mistake.

I loved you too much. I gave you too much.

I still love you, but not as much. I would still give you my time and attention, but I wouldn’t prioritize you too the top as much. I would still be willing to help, but not as much. I would still want to be there for you, but not as much. I would still give, but not as much. I wouldn’t want to lose myself again and, instead of looking for me, look towards you. That was my mistake.

Things have changed since the last time we spoke. I won’t make that mistake again, with you or anyone else. Not again.

Mistake