True love stories: Tough love


I once said NO to love

Love isn't practical. (Thinkstock)

I was always the tough girl.

Pain and experience taught me to live my life on my own. To never fall in love again.

When people ask me why, I say right back: Love won’t feed you, satisfy you or make you rich. Love isn’t practical.

No one can hurt me

Not having love in my life made me strong and brave.

Not having love means no one can make me cry and no one can hurt me again.

I was confident I can live without love. I have a successful career.

I can manage my time without having to consider someone else to date, to cuddle, to visit, to watch a movie with.

I had the freedom relationships can’t give you.

Love is for fairy tales

True love? Well, it only exists in fairy tales or the movies. In real life, love doesn’t happen just because the prince finds his Cinderella through a glass slipper. Even Sleeping Beauty snored for a hundred years before some Prince Charming stumbled upon her.

True love existed only in fiction.

Flings are real

What was real was having a fling here, a fling there and only a fling.
Substitute? I guess so.

If we’re together we’re okay but, at the end of the day, don’t expect me to call, message you or say I love you.

That’s how I lived those years believing I could live without man.

A better friend than a lover

Being courted? That was a big no. Guys asked for permission but I’d always tell them, “Dude, not me. You’re just gonna be hurt if you insist on it. I can only offer friendship. I am a better friend than a lover.” Until I met him at work. A new friend, I thought, in addition to being a colleague because he was cool and nice. I was comfortable with him, a guy I could be weird with. We tried new chow, went on adventures. He was a really good friend.

Hurtful words

One day, he confessed that he loved me, not just as a friend but as a woman. He asked if he could court me. “You can’t,” said the tough girl in me. “I won’t be the girl you want me to be. Find someone better.” In fact, there were many other hurtful things I told him. Rejecting him and telling him off hurt me, too, because they masked the feelings I was also beginning to develop for him. But I couldn’t risk being cheated on again.

No messages, no calls, gone

I couldn’t help the tears falling but the damage was done. He was gone. I regret not giving myself a chance to be happy again. I found new work, new friends, but his face, our time together, lingered in my mind.  On his part, there was silence. No messages, no calls. Gone.

My turn to win him over

Then, one day, after many months, fate brought us back together. I immediately reverted to being my usual tough girl. I wasn’t aware my rejection and the way in which I did it caused him to lose his self confidence and struck fear in his heart.  Then I learned that he was interested in another girl. It was my turn to win him over. It was my turn to make up for lost time and show him how much I regretted the hurt I caused him. It was my turn to show him how deeply I’ve fallen in love with him.

And it worked.

Life is full of missed chances

We are together at last. Not just as friends but as partners, lovers, best friends—a couple.  I’ve been lucky to have been given a second chance to work on showing my love. It doesn’t always work out that way. Because life is full of missed chances. So when love comes, express it, show it and don’t waste it.


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