Friday, September 10, 2004

SEPTEMBER 10, 2004 (FRIDAY)

Random Thought Balloons

Not quite sure what to think of anymore. Sometimes you feel that everything has just been drained away and you are now a clear glass vase: catching light, holding water. You start to return to the days when all you can say in response to, "How are you?" is "I'm okay." Because you don't know who you are anymore, or why you do the things you do. You just allow things to happen - you are the proverbial leaf riding a wave that is just about to roll across the white expanse of the shore.

Last night, at Mia's parents' wedding anniversary at Club Filipino in Greenhills - which you remember primarily because you attended the book launch of Renato Constantino (no relation to UGAT's Piya Constantino) a few years ago - you finally saw a few Grey Table people. You were hoping for a grand reunion, but then you know that most people are just too busy minding their own lives to actually come back to your roots. Not that it really matters; you are also having enough trouble as it is to balance all the aspects of your life without actually being nostalgic about it. You can't afford to be nostalgic about things right now.

And these things sort of remind you about what you've been missing for the past weeks, months years: the changes in people. You find that your worlds have drifted apart, occasionally colliding, but never quite the same anymore. You are now a different person, and so are they, and as much as you'd like to remain the same for them, you cannot. And then you remember how much you needed their affection when you were younger, how much you wanted their approval - like a flower thirsty for the smallest drop of rain. But now it doesn't matter anymore. You have become someone distant, faraway, a person outlined by her shadows.

Sometimes you wonder if you could ever feel again. The fortress is back up, and the mortar and stones you stacked day by day are drying in the sun. In a few days, they will be impenetrable. And you will be protected by the battle armor you wear, and the scars you hide beneath your clothes. And yet a part of you still wonders if you'll be able to be the blushing bride in your own wedding, or if twenty-five years from now you will still be living alone in a condo unit, bringing home different men every fortnight. What is your fixation with marriage, anyway? Romantics have no place in this universe. You have been taught that lesson time and again. Why do you never heed these lessons of circumstances?

Tonight, wandering around the tiangge at Eastwood with your friends, you find yourself fixated on a ring - a silver-crafted crescent moon and a star riding on its curve. The inside of the moon was filled with a glittery blue material, smooth and hard to the touch. There is also a beautiful silver charm bracelet that you've been wanting for the past few months now, but it is too expensive for you - not even with the extra money you've been receiving sporadically from your writing jobs. But the ring is only 40 pesos, and so you fish out loose change and give it to the saleslady, who thanks you profusely. The ring is still too loose for any of your fingers, but it matches the dark red of your nails, and you know that you have to keep it.

You have to start learning what to keep in your life, and what to let go.

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