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From Our Readers: He Didn't Fool You, You Fooled Yourself

But the game's over and you know the truth.
PHOTO Lily Collins | instagram.com/lilyjcollins ART Clare Magno

Are you defending him again?

Every day, you always make yourself believe that you don't guard anyone other than yourself. But then one evening, you found someone who's worth putting your walls down for. Or so you thought. He was a wreck and he was incomplete. He lost himself and you did not mind. Even with his imperfections, you saw how perfect he was. You saw that when nobody else did. Even with how dark his light was, you still saw that one small spark. You thought he was amazing. You did not know there could be something in between the clichéd jokes, absurd conversations, and endless laughs. Who would've thought? You didn't. That was serendipity and that's how you defined it, but how did he see it?

There was always something special by the way you looked at him. It felt like you were insane and that he was your whole world. It wasn't easy, but you kept the feeling anyway because he was with you—you became his confidante and you made him feel better; you made him like himself again. How weird it is to look for your own sould in someone else's and lose yours along the way. But again, you didn't mind.

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How weird it is to look for your own soul in someone else's and lose yours along the way.

He already became your habit—a treacherous and addicting habit. You thought that you found your knight who lost his armor, but you didn't. He felt so much better than before and restored himself, he was complete again and the miserable eyes you used to see laughing were replaced by such happy ones. You were happy for him. God knows how happy you were.

You never changed, and you were still there through the ups and downs of his life. You still listened and understood, but there was something odd that you cannot seem to put a finger on. Was it because of you? Was it because of your circumstances? Somewhere along the way, you lost him. Just gone. 

You were so hurt and angry at him. But you only felt that for a few seconds then you end up blaming yourself for being naïve. You blame yourself because you still feel the same way. You blame yourself because you were responsible for your pain, and you blame yourself because you knew from the very start that he wasn't the man you used to know. He wasn't the man you talked to before. He wasn't the man you loved. Was it even love?

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He didn't fool you, you fooled yourself.

These were the words that echoed inside you because you believed so much in everything, that he would feel the same. But the game's over and you know the truth; he did not fool you, you fooled yourself.

Through all this, you thought that you actually know him but it goes to show that you do not. You're not even halfway there, not even a mile. What devastates you was letting that person get into your life and know more about you. He knows your strengths and weaknesses and what you're capable of. He even knows how to comfort you.

You've always believed that magic happens and that the spark just weakened a little. You believed that you could light it up again. Unfortunately, not all things are magic. Not all things are meant to be. You hate the fact that it won't be the same again and all you have are memories.

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He did not fool you, you fooled yourself. So forgive yourself for feeling this way and for having to chase someone who doesn't want to be chased. You ran long enough and time was the witness even if your love was limitless. The pain may stay, but not for long. So forgive and forgive yourself.

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Katherine Go A day ago

Cold Food

The most thrilling and delightful moment of any school day is opening up your baon during breaks. There is always so much excitement in unveiling your homemade meal and snacks housed inside matching heat-insulating containers. Because preparing packed meals is an age-old tradition of showing parental love, loved ones pour effort into curating a nutritious meal accompanied by a selection of side dishes, desserts, and beverages daily; it reminds us that we are being taken care of, even from far away.

Baon plays a significant role in a Filipino childhood. Almost every Filipino child comes to school with baon made especially for them by their parents or household helpers. Even Filipinos in the labor force continue to bring baon for varying reasons: to save money, recycle leftovers, cater to personal taste, or attend to special needs. Nonetheless, eating your baon is a heart-warming experience that allows Filipinos to bring a piece of home along with them wherever they go.

Even other cultures practice making packed lunch. In Japan, mothers create bento--Japanese meals in partitioned boxes. Because of the popularity of bento, trends have emerged, such as the Kyaraben, or character-themed bento. Naturally, Japanese parents and students began competing for who had the cutest and tastiest bento, and this is similar to what I have witnessed in my own childhood. I remember seeing my classmates sharing their snacks and lunches. They would compare and boast about their parents' or yayas’ cooking. In my case, I never had the chance to join in the competition or indulge in homemade cooking. Up until this day, I have never brought any baon to school.

For a long time, I envied others. As trivial or petty as it may seem, not having baon became a problem for my grade school self. During that time, I had to sit in a separate cafeteria away from my friends because the kids who bought food were assigned to sit elsewhere. You could consider me spoiled, but I wanted to experience something most kids did. I had food at home, so what made it so hard to bring some with me to school?

Now that I am on my final year in high school I have come to realize the benefits of purchasing my own food. Since I spent on food everyday, I learned to budget my allowance at a young age. Over the years, I learned to practice self-control whenever I wanted to eat more greasy fries and drink sweetened beverages. I have tasted the strangest viands at the school cafeterias, and I have repeatedly satiated myself over my latest delicious discoveries. Despite the struggles, I am thankful that I have never had baon because of what I have learned. Not to mention, I never had to experience eating cold food.

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