Thursday, August 19, 2010

Sometimes We are Lost


(4 days ago)

It was midnight, and we were eating Chinese food in a popular restaurant near Makati Avenue. I was treating you because I just asked you for a favor and you, very graciously, obliged. Perhaps it was the late hour, but we were speaking in an almost whisper.

"I just feel lost," you said. "That's what I feel. I don't know how to describe it. I'm just lost."

And you talked about your job. And your friends. And you said that when you were still in love, you didn't feel this thing. But the dissolution of the relationship made the lack in your life more acute.

"It's frustrating. I don't know how to deal with it."

***

(2 years ago)

Another friend. We were chatting over the net. He'd been accepted for a master's program overseas, under a very prestigious scholarship. He just broke up with his boyfriend. He told the latter he couldn't promise monogamy, and the boyfriend would accept nothing less. He was alone, in a foreign place, and he just learned that his ex had no trouble finding a replacement for him. He said (rather, implied) that he found solace and comfort in the countless glasses of red wine he was consuming; the type that came in cheap boxes. He wanted to go home, but he couldn't. There was regret, and loss. His need for a connection felt almost desperate.

And I imagined him, this soul, hunched over a keyboard, in the soft light of a computer monitor, looking for meaning in a life with a future that used to be so bright he couldn't see, now foggy and seemingly meaningless.

***

(4 years ago)

Another friend. He was across the table, talking about a job that was his life. And a boss who told him that he wasn't doing enough. The frustration was etched in every word that he spoke, and he found himself shedding tears he didn't want me to see. I held his hand, and told him this is just one day, in a life that has proven itself, time and again, more than capable of achieving the almost impossible.

"You are special," I told him. "And you know that. There is no need for this."

***

(9 years ago)

We were eating in a fastfood restaurant in Marikina, and you asked me why I've been seeing you so frequently lately. I couldn't tell you, because I didn't know myself. But you were an anchor in a time when everything felt so, transient.

Instead I said, "I missed you. And we've always had a connection. It doesn't happen to me often, so you'll have to forgive me if I tend to abuse the few friendships I've managed to cultivate."

And you agreed. And you never learned how much that meant to me.


For R.

For M.

For I.

Photo taken from here.

*Winner in the 2010 Philippine Blog Awards as one of the Top Three Posts of the Year.

43 comments:

  1. what's so admiring is that in all those instances, you were there for your friends. coz sometimes, in those scenarios, our responses aren't necessary. the mere presence of us were enough. turning words meaningless.

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  2. Felt like Im watching melo-dramatic movie..

    know what, you inspired me

    now im thinking of having my own blog...

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  3. mri is magnetic resonance imaging for me. like now, im so lost. after reading sooo many books, its hard to find meaning in life.

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  4. I guess getting LOST happens. To Friends. To Love-ones. To Oneself. And having "an anchor in transient times" is the compass stashed in our pocket to keep us sound.

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  5. i like being lost. because when you're lost, you can rediscover things. it allows you to create a new path. everything is new.

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  6. Thanks for taking the time to comment on my post. Excuse the angst.

    It made me smile to see a fellow Filipino on Blogger and another thing, you write so flawlessly. I related to one of your lines and it made the tears brim in my eyes.

    "...you were an anchor in a time when everything felt so, transient."

    It's beautiful. I couldn't have said it any better.

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  7. if you'd argue this way in court, baka pumalakpak ang judge.

    and...

    thanks. thanks for being there. i remember that scene. i don't remember you though getting lost. you always seem to know where you're headed. i know we're both strong-charactered but your being able to conceal weakness is a strength i'll always envy. in a group of equals, that will always put you first. and i think, that's why you're a lawyer.

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  8. simple words that are heartfelt mean that much and a friend's mere presence is more than enough... especially, if we have cocktails or wine around

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  9. @desole boy: you make me sound like a better person than I am. thank you. :-)

    @life: i appreciate your words.

    @arkin: hahaha. exactly like i was when i was a freshman.

    @straight-ish: i agree.

    @narnian: that's a nicer way of looking at it. :-)

    @tony: thank you. :-)

    @hoykolokoy and flashesofgray: ang haba ng pangalan niyo. winner. from now on, binabansagan ko kayong hk and fg. :-)

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  10. @fg: na-inspire ang lola mo sa profile pic mo so ginaya ko. except di ko alam pano gawin black and white kaya red and yellow ang lumabas. hahaha.

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  11. those feelings are strangely familiar... i especially feel for your friend abroad. hugs much to him!

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  12. We all feel lost sometimes, but eventually we will find our way back. The trick is to not let the sensation get the better of us. Sometimes, getting lost is a good thing; it can make us realize our own strengths.

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  13. maayos ang daloy ng diwa. mahusay na pagkakasulat ng patungkol sa pangungulila.

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  14. i'm not pretty sure if it's all about love or plainly about loss. but it sure is affective =)

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  15. Sometimes our circumstances require that we lose ourselves, only so we could find our way back. By embracing that void, unimaginable and overwhelming, an anarchy of antagonism from an uncooperative fate, we emerge like blank canvasses. Better equipped to paint a more vivid future. Having someone you're intimately connected with, whether by platonic or romantic leanings, is always helpful to alleviate the anxiety. But there are things too that must be entangled in solitude.

    Walking has been my eternal process to comprehend life in solitude. There is comfort in strolling the hurried streets of Makati at night, allowing my own pace to contrast the expedience of the faceless crowd. By so, feeling most solitary without ever leaving the urban consciousness.

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  16. FUCK, WE ARE ALL SO FUCKED UP. haha.

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  17. Ang tyaga mo naman magbilang ng taon hehehehe...

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  18. @shattershards: I agree.

    @yas: maraming salamat sa iyong mga salita. :-)

    @sensei: thank you

    @red: as always, I agree. Cut and paste na lang ako. haha. :-)

    @glenskie: haha. hindi naman. minsan lang.

    @glentot: ganyan daw talaga. hahaha.

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  19. Thanks so much for stopping by my wacky blog (Kelley's Break Room) the other day! I'm glad you liked those ducks. :) I've enjoyed reading your blog. You are a very good writer!

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  20. @kelley: Hey! thank you! the ducks were super cute!

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  21. What wonderful wonderful stories.
    Your friends are lucky to have you there for them.
    Thank you for your note on my blog. Un Beso !
    C @ NotesfromABroad

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  22. @Broad: Hey! Thanks for dropping by!

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  23. Just came by and clicked here to read your top picks. This one is great, because it speaks to me. Especially the middle two. When I went on my externship for the CIA, I was alone in an unfamiliar city, desperately miserable and lonely. It was made worse with a bad falling out from a friend who saw fit to torture me with prank calls and hacked internet accounts.
    The other one, well, you know how it is.

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  24. @Jenni: Hey, thanks for sharing. Appreciate your story.

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  25. Thought I'd check out your blog again.
    It's always a great read!!
    I'm voting for "Sometimes We Are Lost".
    But it was hard to chose.

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  26. Thank you for this. You see I am lost also and there is much comfort in little company.

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  27. @Janelle: Thank you too. I'm happy you found some comfort in my writing.

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  28. Sad and lovely at the same time. You write really well.

    Thanks for visiting my blog. :)

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  29. I keep on reading this post. Talagang panalo. From the style to the content, win na win.

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  30. congrats!

    here’s my photo coverage of the 2010 Philippine Blog Awards

    2010 Philippine Blog Awards photo coverage (winners, stage, hosts, people)
    http://azraelsmerryland.blogspot.com/2010/12/2010-philippine-blog-awards-photo.html

    bloggers @ 2010 Philippine Blog Awards (photo coverage)
    http://azraelsmerryland.blogspot.com/2010/12/bloggers-2010-philippines-blog-awards.html

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  31. auds here. :) bakit di mo shinare blog mo sa amin before, had to do a google search pa just to look for you...am pretty sure i know who M is. :)

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  32. i really did not underatsand what you wished to convey but could fell your heart in every word that i glance on my computer screen. a wonderful post. who is RMI?

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  33. That's lovely. The reversed chronology was leading to that ending, but I kept reading nonetheless.

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  34. Beautiful blog indeed. I actually thought the ending would reveal that in each of those instances it was you speaking to yourself in the mirror. Forgive me. Maybe it's just the result of my belated exposure to koreanovelas. :)

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  35. I remember I read this post when I was at a very frustrating point in my career. I quit my job on December 31st and walked into the new year with the freshest of feet and happier than I'd been in months! I don't feel lost anymore. I'm looking for a job, but I don't feel lost. And it's such a great feeling! Life's too short to be miserable over people who are worthless!

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  36. why being at lost means lonely :(

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  37. Very nice. It says a lot about post-college days without saying so in explicit terms. Nice!

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  38. are we actually lost when we 'lose' ourselves?

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  39. Ako, parang laging lost. hahaha. :) Ewan, basta salamat sa pagpost.

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  40. Like your friends, I, too, always find myself lost in terms of career and identity. It sucks but maybe this is just part of a quarter-life crisis. But getting lost is no big deal especially if we end up finding our perfect match at the end of the day. Nice blog, Fickle Cattle!

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