“You don’t fall in love like you fall in a hole. You fall like falling through space. It’s like you jump off your own private planet to visit someone else’s planet. And when you get there it all looks different: the flowers, the animals, the colours people wear. It is a big surprise falling in love because you thought you had everything just right on your own planet, and that was true, in a way, but then somebody signalled to you across space and the only way you could visit was to take a giant jump. Away you go, falling into someone else’s orbit and after a while you might decide to pull your two planets together and call it home. And you can bring your dog. Or your cat. Your goldfish, hamster, collection of stones, all your odd socks. (The ones you lost, including the holes, are on the new planet you found.)

And you can bring your friends to visit. And read your favourite stories to each other. And the falling was really the big jump that you had to make to be with someone you don’t want to be without. That’s it.

PS You have to be brave.”

Jeanette Winterson

On Moving On

This is one of my attempts at it.

I remember December 2011. A boy broke my heart or I broke my heart because I thought this boy liked me back but he did not, not in a way that I was expecting at least.

What they do not tell us about heartbreak is that sometimes, our hearts get broken not from breaking up with someone we love (in a relationship and things turn sour and you have to part ways kind of heartbreak). Sometimes, we fall in love with someone and s/he does not feel the same way. Sometimes, we meet this wonderful person and we’re pretty sure we’re meant-to-be but we’re not. We pick up on details that tell us we have a chance with a person but in the end we do not end up together. These are all heartbreaks too.

Alas, this is not about heartbreak but what happens after. This is about moving on.

How do we move on when everything reminds us of the person we most admire and crave?

How do we get over someone we thought was the “right person”, our “soulmate”?

I don’t know. All I know is that time is our friend. “Give yourself time”, a friend advised me when I was going through that dark patch in late 2011/early 2012. In a way that we do not force ourselves to like or love someone, we cannot force ourselves out of our feelings either. I accept this as fact but even I have a hard time applying it in life. I’m the type who cannot wait to get over someone. I immediately want to skip the part that hurts. I am human after all. I try to avoid pain if I can. If the pain is there already, I cannot wait for the day that it finally stops hurting. But guess what? It does not work that way. We have to go through the pain.

One day, it just leaves us. We no longer think about the people who broke our hearts. Not as much anymore. Only once in a while. Sometimes, one of them appears in our thoughts. Sometimes, we reminisce. Sometimes, we write about them (Exhibit A, this entry).

A habit I cannot get rid of: giving deadlines to my feelings e.g. “April 30, dapat mag-move-on na ko“. Again, it does not work. I constantly have to remind myself that feelings cannot be forced. We have to acknowledge the legitimacy of our feelings and our thoughts and we have to feel them and think them.

December 2011 was tough. I spent hours in bed feeling sorry and stupid and sad. It was Christmas season and I was far from jolly. So many things would remind me of this boy as if he wasn’t the main person in my head already. I knew that one day I’d get over him but at that time, I was just miserable. But I did go through it. Every day. Then it was time to move on. Literally. When I graduated from college, I also (gradually) graduated from my feelings for him.

Let time do its work. We cannot impose. We can do things to help us move on. Delete the person off our phones, unfollow them on Facebook, distract ourselves. But in the end, we heal our hearts simply by continuing. We get out of bed and live our lives.

At the moment, I am attracted to an amazing person but for reasons I choose not to disclose, I cannot have him. Actually, at one point this month, I was quite sure I was already in love with him and it breaks my heart because I know we are not meant to be.

They say timing is one of the biggest factors in relationships and timing can be a bitch. But I will stick to what I said earlier, time is our friend.

I came across an interesting article a few days ago. The gist was, we do not meet the right person at the wrong time. If the timing is wrong, that person is not the right one for us.

This guy I currently like is not the man for me. I’m thankful for our little moments and I am looking forward to the time I no longer feel this way towards him.

Move on by April 30? Maybe not.