I was writing a rather more serious blog post for the past two days when I suddenly felt the urge to just stand up, have a glass of wine, and browse at the photo albums I had stored throughout the years under my bed. You can absolutely tell me that I am a dramatic sentimentalist for opting on spending some hard earned cash to have my pictures printed amidst the eruption of storage devices in a much cheaper prices. You can tell me that and I would thank you for it. Because I really am a dramatic sentimentalist. As I go through pages of my albums, I couldn’t help but realize how my dramatic self got me to someone who’s mere existence makes me glad the I existed in this world at this time. It got me to someone whom others would call “a catch” and it would make my ears and my mouth proud because I was the only one, at this point, to have catched it. It got me my first love. You may think that we are the lucky ones for it is quite rare for puppy sentiments and emotions to develop into something that burns deep inside someone’s heart. It’s not luck I tell you. It’s hard work! I worked hard for him.
Aaron despised me the moment we met in freshmen year. For him, I was the dumb and annoying girl who slipped a glittery love letter into his locker and made all his books shine with glitters because of it. Aaron for me, during those times, was the guy I am definitely going to marry! If anybody could be perfect, it was him. He had the highest GPA since time immemorial because he’s that smart. He is excellent at sports because he’s got what most jocks lack. He can analyze! He is also quite the charmer because he can remember everything about someone. Wouldn’t that make your heart falter? The thing that he lacked though was the right attitude towards people he considers “not like him” which is another word for someone like me. This blog post will sound like something straight off a romance novel but what can I say, it is what it is. I guess I can say that this is a story about falling inlove and growing up along the way.
He approached me at the cafeteria a few days after I gave him that love letter, his face all red which was what someone as hopeless romantic as me would think as a positive sign. I was in the middle of daydreaming when he started yelling at me, saying I needed to buy him a new set of books because he can’t use them anymore given the fact that I had my glitters and dumbness sprinkled all over it. Oh, that’s why he was so red. He was pissed. Then he shoved me my love letter and wrote a reply below stating, “You need to quit high school because a 7 year-old kid can compose sentences better than you.” Imagine the pain I felt after that incident. But I didn’t take that as something negative, but rather something that kept me going to my new goal in high school: Be eligible for Aaron. My school separated the sections of the top 15 students from the typical highschoolers. I thought that maybe if I get into his section, he would not think of me as a dumb person. I studied hard each day as I learned time management. I lessened my attendance at high school parties to give more time for my studies and I couldn’t afford to play the look in a rich high school party anyway. I studied my ass off and before I knew it, I landed on the 15th spot in the batch before the school year ended.
I got admitted to the alpha section during my sophomore year and you can only imagine the happiness I felt as I think about sophomore year with Aaron on my side. He had the funniest face when I first entered the classroom and sat a few tables behind him. But he didn’t gave much thought about it though because his face completely turned neutral the moment I sat down. He didn’t even glanced my way the whole afternoon and that made me sadder than the time he yelled at me many months ago. At least he acknowledged my existence that way as compared to what was happening now. As days went by, I started noticing that Aaron was a completely nice person. He’s a kind person who specifically hates me. A couple of weeks have passed when I had my courage to ask him about our literature assignment. I mean, he helps everybody, even the girls that are obviously just flirting with him. I approached him and asked. He stopped writing and looked up with much annoyance in his eyes saying, “Tell me honestly, did you really worked your way here for me? Because you couldn’t even compose a proper sentence the last time we met and I bet you’re having a hard time catching up now. Do you really like me that much? Just stop ’cause it’s annoying. I hate girls who change themselves because of somebody else.” The nerve of him to say that in my face! I was gonna yell at him for having too much confidence at himself. Why is he so dense and emotionless?! But then I realized that I had no right to be mad because all he did was speak the truth. I did worked my way here because of him and I am having a hard time because this is not me. I am not smart. I don’t belong in this class. Out of all the rant and loud curses in my head, all that came out of my mouth was, “Yeah, everything you said was true! But why do you always yell at me eveytime we get to talk? I know you’re pissed but you could’ve said those in a more gentle manner.” I got mad at him. But I still craved for a little acknowledgement from him and that overpowered the anger I was feeling.
Before the school went for the holidays in December, our speech teacher announced that we are going to have a parliamentary debate in class which will cost us 30% of our grades that semester. I was glad because I didn’t know if it was fate or whatever, but the pair would be grouped according to their rank (1st & 15th, 2nd & 14th, etc) and that means I’ll be grouped, exclusively, with Aaron. That also means I will get to see him during the holidays! My feelings at that moment were ecstatic as I hugged my seatmate when I heard it. Aaron, on the other hand was rather quite agitated and I can understand that. I approached him while he was fixing his things after class and said, “I know you’re kind of not happy with the groupings for the speech activity but I promise you I will work hard on the coming days!” But he just smirked and continued fixing his bag saying, “Kind of not happy? Yeah right. Will your hardwork really pay off? What if a smart girl like Jesse works hard too? Can you top that?” Instead of motivating his pair, he went and stepped on my confidence. But then I thought that this would be a great time to show him the real me. I asked him to help me on the holidays and as much as he didn’t want to, he had to agree.
I rode the bicycle to his house every other day and even though I knew that it was just a snap for him to ask their driver to bring him to my humble home, I didn’t resort to that. I was ashamed of our quaint and small house. I wanted him to like me and I thought that not showing that side of me was the best way to go. A week had already passed and my plan was not even making a dent. He spoke when he needs to but we never discussed anything other than the rules of debate. I tried to ask but he just gave a deregatory remark saying that if I plan on hitting on him during our practices, I’m just wasting my time because every moment he spends teaching me simple debate, the more he realizes how dumb I am. But then something embarassingly remarkable happened! I left my speech notebook, which was full of Genesis loves Aaron doodles, in his house. I was panicking when I realized that it was missing inside my bag. Should I call Aaron and tell him I’d get it at this time? But I don’t know his number! I can’t just magically appear infront of his doorstep. What if I just let it be and just get it next week? His house is big and there’s a chance he’ll not notice it. I chose the latter option and went to his home the following week acting like nothing ever happened. I was looking for my notebook at their couch when he suddenly spoke and said, “If you’re looking for your notebook, it’s up in my room.” And he asked me to go up the stairs with him and get it. When I finally got a hold of my notebook, he suddenly pulled and pinned me on his bed. What the heck is happening?! I was in a complete state of shock but he was just smiling and smirking. He leaned his face a few centimeters more and told me in the most alluring voice, “Genesis loves Aaron, huh?” and that made me panic more because I didn’t know if he was going to kiss me or what but then he continued, “Am I making you feel nervous? I know you want me to kiss you. Should I do it?” But his laughing voice was more of a mockery than an expression of attraction. At that time, my feeling of love suddenly turned into hate. I pushed him and grabbed my notebook, but then he got more amused when he did that saying that he’s just doing what was written in my notebook and that if I didn’t want it to be done to me, then why did I write it down in the first place? He told me to stop focusing my life on him and get a life of my own. I should stop daydreaming about me and him being passionately in love and just focus on my own dream. I obviously got mad and stormed off at his house with tears in my eyes. I have never felt so humiliated in my entire life, and what’s worse was the person whom I look up to the most was the one doing it to me all the time!
A few days have passed and I haven’t spoken to him ever since. But one Friday afternoon, my mom called me downstairs saying I have a visitor. To my surprise it was Aaron, and he had my bag with him. I felt ashamed that he had to wait at our tight living/dining room so I asked him to go up to my room. Once seated, he broke the ice saying, “I don’t know if you intentionally left your bag there for me to go to your house or if you’re really just dumb for not noticing you left it in the first place.” and that was the first time I didn’t hear him say the right answers. I knew I left my bag in his room but I didn’t care because I would much rather loose everything I had inside that bag than go back. I didn’t answer his insulting question but rather gave a question myself too. I asked him why does he say the worst things at me. His answer changed my life forever. In the most straight manner he said something quite like this, “Girls like you annoy me. You live your lives so recklessly, revolving it on a single person. You think that person is the right one for you and you confine yourselves to that thought. And in the end when you realize that the time you spent chasing and trying to impress that person could’ve been the time you spent on fixing your life or thinking about the future, you’re already lost! You’ve got nothing because you gave your everything to one person. Stop chasing and dreaming about other people! Dream for yourself and chase that instead! I don’t dislike you Genesis. I just don’t like people like you, but not specifically you. Stop chasing me. I am always telling you you’re dumb not because of your intellect but because of the way you’re not fighting back everytime I call you stupid. No one has the right to make you feel inferior without your consent. Not even someone like me. I don’t like the fact that everytime I look into your eyes, I see nothing but myself. I want to look at your eyes and see the depths of you.” I was shocked at what he said as I realize that he, infact, looks at me… in the eyes! With that rhetorical speech he just said, he left my room and thanked my mother for letting him stay for a few minutes.
The rest was history after that day. I remembered everything he said and went back to my life. I lost my slot at the alpha class during junior year but I didn’t mind. I didn’t belonged there anyway and the kids there are too weird for my taste. I took art classes and decided to become active and try out new things, hoping that I’ll find what I want to be in life along the way. I never forgot him and the events that took place that Christmas holiday but I sure am trying my hardest to find out what I wanted in life and chase it instead. We’ve seen each other a few times during school and club activities but we never really talked or something. I went on a few dates with guys but I never really took one seriously as I wanted to focus my life into something more valid.
One afternoon as I was eating at the cafeteria with my friends, he suddenly appeared in front of me and told me to follow him. I didn’t want to go because I wasn’t finished eating and class was about to begin but he was a persistent guy that he pulled me out of the bench and into the locker area. I got pissed and asked him what he wanted that I needed to be pulled in the hallway without my approval. He didn’t mind my question and asked me how I’ve been and I told him I wasn’t feeling okay given the fact that I did not have time to finish my lunch. He smiled and said, “Can you manage to go back to alpha class?” I was surprised by what he said and told him that even if I can, I don’t want to because I didn’t belong there. And besides, isn’t he the one most annoyed about my stay there? He agreed and said, “Well, you know that I like you right? I told you that last December. And now I’m asking you to be my prom date.” I laughed at what he said. Umm, when did he told me he liked me? I never received any affectionate words from him as far as I know, much more something as sweet as a confession of love. He made a remark about how dense I am for not getting the point of what he said. He told me that if I was just someone he got annoyed to, would he agree on letting me step in his house? Would he have given an effort to bring my bag back? Would he have told me those things if he never cared for me? Then I told him he only did those things because of his own grade. He laughed and said that he didn’t need to practice with me if it was only for his own gain because we could win the debate without me saying a single thing anyway. Such a narcissist! I told him I don’t want to spend the whole prom night getting insulted by someone like him but then he asked me, “Do you like someone else now?” I disagreed and said that even if that was the case, I’d much rather spend the prom alone or not go at all since the private-school’s prom fee and mandatory prom dress is too expensive than the average anyway. Then he asked again, “You’d rather not spend it with someone you like and likes you back? You’re weird. Stop acting like you don’t want it. It’s in your bucketlist. I’ve seen it in your notebook! Besides, I already bought you a prom ticket. If you’re still stubborn then I’m going to buy you the prom dress and shoes and i’m gonna send it to your house and make you pay for it if you don’t attend with me.” I felt like exploding when I heard those. How can he make me feel that way in just on paragraph?! Ofcourse I wanted to attend with him deep inside, I was just playing hard to get. I felt so flattered that my first love finally, after all those hard work, liked me.
Everything went back to normal after prom. We went on with our lives and it wasn’t until Senior year that we started seeing each other. Why? Well he lost his slot in the alpha class, a feat obviously done with all intentions by him, and transferred into my class. I told him that I thought he hated people who change themselves and revolve their lives on one single person. Without losing his sharpness that I have come to adore, he said, “Please. I’m not revolving my life on you. I can still score a top university with SATs anyway even if I stay here. I just went my way and did this for you because I know you want too. You should be thankful.” I knew that this was just his way of saying that yeah, he wanted to see me everyday so badly. Hahaha.
And that concludes my love story with Aaron! He’s now taking up Biophysics at Yale while I’m taking up Architecture in a non-ivy league school. We learned alot from each other through those high school experiences. I learned that people should work hard for themselves not for another person. I learned that liking someone which makes us feel inferior in some ways isn’t really such a bad idea because it makes us realize our flaws and strive to be the greatest that we can be. He still bullies me a few times but it’s all fun and games now because I know that we love each other and I know that having each other by our side is helping us grow into a better kind of human being.