An Open Letter To . . . From . . .

by Juseph Elas

Dear You,

I’ve always been fascinated by how some people are given the chance to say what they have to say and how that decision spurred the most thrilling and exciting and magical and worthwhile moment of their lives to be written. I’ve always taken a liking to how a simple yes can brighten someone’s day. And I’ve developed an interest to find my own great perhaps.

There’s a line to a Taylor Swift digital booklet that I’ve always been captivated by, one that would always bring me to the brink of breaking down and would always push me to take a leap; to take that fearless step, head-first, without looking beyond the hedges for walls I know I shouldn’t hit. The line reads, “There is a time for silence. There is a time waiting your turn. But if you know how you feel, and you so clearly know what you need to say, you’ll know it. I don’t think you should wait. I think you should speak now.” It’s a line that I’ve related to whenever a crossroad presents itself to me, moments of desperation and intense emotions.

But, almost always, I am caught up in an emotional and mental turmoil because I will always have that moment when I am a hundred percent sure of doing it, and then something will bring me back to the reality that I am making myself vulnerable to having my heart and soul falling prey to Earth’s most treacherous pit.

And so I ask, how could some people say that the right moment has come to take that leap of faith? How could one be so fearless to know better than to hit the brakes?

I’ve never expected to develop a liking to you – I think it just did. No ands, ifs, and buts. I’m not even sure you’re worth the while because all the time when I was in the office where I work as an intern and you as the mayor’s EXO, you were this figure in bright colored polos and khaki pants that would always look at me with this here’s-the-nobody-trying-to-be-somebody-persona stare. While deep in the bowels of my brain, I would look at you and time would just stop picking up and I would always caught myself trap in this timezone where I would stare at you with so much fascination.

I never knew I like you then.

My past experiences in love have taught me very little to none. I’ve never experienced the kind of thing I am experiencing whenever you’re around. You made me crazy in so many ways that I have started to develop these crazy practices I have never tried doing before. I started patting my cheeks with powder so as to reduce haggardness, started to take a several degrees away in the way I behave thinking that I might turn you off (like that’s helpful), started to day-dream about you, started scribbling your name in my notebook whenever boredom strikes, started doing FLAMES and I would always end up frustrated because it will always yield friends instead of . . .  instead of something more.

But the ultimate things I’ve done for you to notice me is to change my regimens. I sought for the things that will help me reduce my acnes, lighten my complexion and even to tone-up my build. And my friends would even ask me, “inspired ka man?” And I would always offer them a nod or smile and nothing more. I was very much intent to keep what’s motivating me to myself, you see.

It was there that I realized that I like you . . . a lot. I like you a lot that I am changing myself so that you’ll notice me.

Then there was a time in the office when the strings of fate finally took a different thread; you were sitting right beside me, in front of my boss and co-intern. You smelled good by the way. So good that I could drink you in like my personal brand of heroine, making me high, intoxicating my bloodstreams without you knowing it. Then you started talking to me like you’re trying to be sweet and cheeky and like you’re this person that never looked at me with that unwelcoming stare the first time I stepped foot in the office March of this year.

I was fascinated by how light and easy it was to make talks with you and to laugh with you and to joke with you. Everything was enchanting. Then I took a stolen glance at you just in time when you were busy with your iPhone and I saw this person radiating with so much charisma and genius and youthfulness and vibrancy. And, to me, that was an ultimate moment of intense emotion, a state of grace, a newfound inspiration, extreme joy, wishful thinking, the peak of my day-dreams and, in some instances, a pleasurable euphoria.

Came the time when you asked me why I like you and that caught me off-guard. In my mind, you can’t explain why you fall in love because it’s a feeling. And feelings, much like intense emotions, are unexplainable. But I mustered something, which was to you, a very descriptive emotional prose. My answer went like, “I think that when you see someone in a different way, like in a different periphery, and there’s a spark and there’s something really unexplainable and you’re starting to become crazy and corny and you feel like you’re fearless, that’s when you can say you like someone.”

But, one thing I’ve learned from this roller-coaster ride is that, admitting your feelings to someone you love or like is the hardest because all of us are vulnerable to having our hearts broken and our feelings rejected. All because we received “thank you”s intead of “I love/like you too”s.

From The Intern Who Never Saw The Train Coming. x

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