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Disappointment

I liked a guy when I was in freshmen year, let’s call him Yume.

As weird as this sounds, I will never forget the first time we met. I was first briefly introduced to him by my English classmate, and I didn’t really care who he was at that time.

Then the second time we met, I was sitting on a bench one night waiting for my parents to pick me up from school. It was raining (I think), and he passed by me while carrying some equipment (for his school organization, I assumed). He saw me, I saw him, and we immediately recognized each others’ faces. Yume saw I was playing Pokemon Black on my pink DS Lite, and he started talking to me about Pokemon until I had to leave a minute later. As soon as I got into my car, I remember feeling glad, because I believed that I made a new friend. That night, he followed me on almost all my social media accounts.

We started talking online more frequently, I found out that he played Pokemon, and we shared the same interests. Every now and then, he would link me songs (he was a musician) , and they were really nice songs. And every morning before my English class, we would say “hi” to each other along the hallway, because his first period classroom was next to mine. The more we interacted, the closer we became, and the more I began to realize that I was starting to like Yume.

He was my second college crush (the first one turned out to be a creep), and I liked him… quite a lot. But when my parents found out, they didn’t like it (for reasons too complicated to explain), and they told me to get over him. After they told me that, I became conflicted and confused; sometimes I even cried about it. I continued talking to Yume regardless, because he was my friend first and foremost, and he was still fun to talk to.

Over time, I eventually got over him, and I never told him I liked him. Our online chats became less frequent, and we only sometimes saw each other in school. But we still remained really good friends. He still sent me songs, talked about Pokemon, and if he had girl troubles sometimes he would confide with me. When I wanted to fangirl, I sometimes would message him. When one of his friends – that I liked after Yume – left me for another girl, he would try his best to comfort me. All was good and I was happy.


One night, on the second semester of my Junior year, he messaged me online to ask me if I was free to see one of his gigs. Unfortunately, I told him no, because I was working on my final school requirements. Then he said, “Too bad, you won’t be able to hear your song”. At first I didn’t know what he meant, then he explained: He wrote a song about me… well about my name… during our freshmen year. He admitted that he had a crush on me back then.

Normally when guys dedicate things to me, I would be disgusted and creeped out, but for some reason, when he told me that, I was happy. Not like Oh my god, I love you happy, but Aw, I’m flattered happy. I didn’t see the point of hiding it, so in return I also admitted that I liked him in freshmen year too. For a brief moment, he sounded quite frustrated, but we both agreed that we were happy to have remained good friends.


On my first semester of Senior year, things started to change. We started hanging out more, especially since we started meeting up every morning before my first period.

Yume and I were with our org mates one day, and I was telling him about my recent crush. I told him that my crush was not paying attention to me, then Yume replied, “Maybe you should have a crush on me again haha…” I laughed a little to that, thinking that he meant it as a joke, but after a while, it made me wonder why he said it. It bothered me for a couple of days.

We started chatting more often again, and aside from topics about Pokemon, we started talking about more profound topics… like… life. And I’ll admit, it was nice, because I liked deep conversation. It was my thesis year, so when I had problems, he would insist on helping me. When I had to walk to my classes from the org room, he would escort me. And at first I saw these as things a friend like Yume would do, and it was nice.


It was the day of my first thesis defense, and I was extremely nervous. The night before I told him how nervous I was, and he asked if I wanted to see him before my defense. I said yes, and we met up the next morning. I stayed with him before my presentation. We moved to the school library, and we were sitting on one of the couches. At one point, I was terribly scared, I started shaking and having anxiety attacks. He noticed and after a few minutes, he hugged me and I allowed myself to lean on his shoulder. It felt nice. It felt warm. It felt… safe. And I liked it. When it was time for him to leave, he wished me good luck in the defense. After the defense, he was the first person I texted.

After that day, we continued chatting and meeting up in school, and the more frequent the chatting and the hangouts became, the more I was beginning to realize that I was starting to like Yume… again.

We eventually became a little more physically intimate after that, and I don’t mean kissing or holding hands. Sometimes I would rest my head on his shoulder, sometimes he would rest his head on my… head (because I was shorter, duh). I even noticed that he’d hesitantly rest his hand on my hip, then after a while he’d pull away (it felt creepy, but nice at the same time). We never talked about it, really. We just let it happen. And if neither of us complained, I assumed everything was fine.


My anxiety worsened over the semester, and I’d sometimes tell him about it. One night, I had a breakdown, and I asked if I could see him before my first class the next day. I met up with him, and all I wanted to do was lean on him and cry. We sat down in an quiet area in school, and we just stayed there. I told him I was sorry for crying, and he admitted that hearing me cry and talk ruined his mood for the rest of the day. After that I wondered if I was starting to become a burden to him.

He stopped talking to me for almost 3 weeks after that. He’d cut our online conversations short, and he made less of an effort to meet up in the morning (not that he was obligated to anyway). It hurt me. I subtly asked him why, and he said it was the stress. For some reason that didn’t convince me.


On the day of my second thesis defense, Yume sent me a text message, wishing me good luck. After my thesis defense, he asked me to drop by our org’s Team Building Seminar, so I did. I said “hello” to everyone, including him, but for most of my stay, I ignored him. When he did talk to me, I only replied to him with one-word sentences. After 10 minutes or so, I decided to leave, and he also decided to leave. We were going the same way, so we walked together. He noticed I was in a bad mood, but we didn’t talk much about it.

When we reached my drop-off point, he decided to wait for me. Just when I was about to leave, he told me he wanted to talk, so we did. He noticed our conversations have been becoming more romantic, and I admitted that I liked him. We started discussing what would happen if we did get together, and how unhealthy out relationships would be.

We talked about a lot of things… things I didn’t think we would ever talk about. He was a mess, he looked like a mess (and I knew he was messed up every since I got to know him better, but – stupid me – I didn’t care). As a friend I was concerned, as more than a friend… well… to hell with that, I was worried for him.

After a long while, I had to leave, but before I did leave, I asked him what he thought of me. He said he was starting to like me again, but he said it was best to stay friends. He believed our relationship would be unhealthy (and as painful as it is to admit it, I agreed). He said things were different now. If we were still freshmen, he might have dated me. But we both know that we’ve changed in the last three years.

He asked me if I fell that far already. I said I was an emotional person… Of course, I fell pretty fast… and hard.

As soon as I got into my car, I cried.


A few days later, I noticed that he started hanging out with another girl – a girl I knew he used to like – and it was painful to watch. He ignored me for a few weeks, then we slowly started talking to each other again. It was still painful, and sometimes I would still cry after seeing him for a while.


It’s been eight months since then, and Yume and I are still friends, but not as close anymore. I’m still trying to repair our friendship (and people say he might be trying as well), but we hardly talk online anymore. We never hung out in school, when we still had school. Whenever we did talk, it didn’t go anything beyond Pokemon. Our conversations remained shallow, and (what I felt) lacked substance.

I noticed he began drinking more and smoking more (and I knew he smoked and drank before, but he promised me that he would do it in moderation), he would talk about it  and glorify it every single f*cking week, and it pissed me off.

It still hurts seeing him, and I can’t pinpoint exactly why. Maybe I still like him, or maybe it’s because he’s changed. Maybe it’s because he hurt me emotionally, or maybe it’s because he ignored me when I needed his friendship. Ever since we’ve drifted apart, I’ve always wondered if I ever mattered to him, as a friend or as more than a friend. Because right now, I feel like I was just someone he knows.


There were three guys who made my college life an emotional living hell – the Creep, the Asshole and the Disappointment. Yume is the disappointment.

What made me sad was that he changed… not for the better. I don’t know if he’s aware of it, but he is a nice guy, he was to me. Seeing that gave me hope that he’d be a better person after meeting me. But now… I don’t know what to think anymore.

Yume is my friend, and he will always be my friend, but a part of me will always feel like I’ve lost him. It’s been 3 weeks since I last saw him, and I don’t know when’s the next time I’ll ever see him. I will always love and care for him from afar (because clearly he doesn’t want me with him right now). He can do whatever he wants, and all I can do is continue wishing him the best

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Belong

In my freshmen year in college, I joined this school organization, and it was my “home org” until my last day in college. It was an organization that appreciated films – both local and foreign- and it was the org I thought I’d fit in the most. The people in the organization were nice to me. They welcomed me in, they talked to me when I was just sitting quietly in the org room, and as a result, I made a lot of good friends. I had wonderful and extremely painful memories in that org, and I thought I had fit in. But I realized recently that no matter how much interaction I had with the organization, I didn’t feel like I had ever belonged…

I prioritized my academic requirements over extra-curricular activities, as a result I did very minimal work for my org. At one point, I was already planning to leave the org, and it made me conflicted, because I really wanted to stay. Plus, for someone who was (and is still) really introverted, I really wanted to push myself to make new friends. One org event and one good friend in the org convinced me to stay, and try the org out again for another year. In the end, I never left the org, but due to the amount of academic work, I remained to doing minimal tasks for them.

I eventually became one of the regular members who stayed in the org room, and as a result of that I made a couple of acquaintances and close friends. When they noticed I was becoming more involved, they offered me project head positions, but I turned them down in fear that I wouldn’t make a good leader. They tried inviting me to dinners and outings, but I said “no”, because I had to do homework and I had no ride home. I felt sad for turning them down, because I really wanted to become close with them, and it frustrated me how I was holding myself back from interacting.

Despite all that though, I continued hanging out in the org room, trying to interact with them, and enjoy the company of my org-mates. (Aside from my blockmates) When I was in that film org, it felt like I belonged somewhere in school, it kind of felt like home.

A few weeks back, they orginized a senior’s send-off, and I attended. They prepared a short video for all the seniors, and as I was watching it, I noticed that I wasn’t in any of the pictures with the org. It was a very trivial thing, and I was already expecting to not see my face at all, because I wasn’t very involved (moreover, I was usually the person behind the camera).

But seeing that video presentation made me realize something. Although I was a member of the org, I didn’t feel like I belonged in the org. At that moment – after the video presentation – I felt extremely out of place. I thought I knew the org, and I thought they knew me, but I realized that I don’t really know them at all. The main members of the org felt like a whole world away, and I felt totally isolated from them.

I almost cried during the party, after realizing that, and a couple of my friends were wondering if I was okay. In the end, I told them I’d be fine. I didn’t want to tell them that I’ve always felt out of place; it would have looked like an insult to them. I’d partly blame myself for feeling this way. I love that org and all the people in it, and I will always be grateful that they welcomed me in. If I had the chance to do it all over again, I would be more active and involved. I would accept the project positions, and I would go out to dinners with them.

I’ve always had a hard time trying to fit in… anywhere, because I’ve always felt like I was weird. I enjoyed solitude so much, I felt like it messed up my social skills. It’s probably one of my main insecurities right now. To be honest I’ve never really explicitly told this to anyone, because I never saw the point in telling.

But I felt like I had to  express it in some way.

Words

While looking through my old drawings, I came across something that made me remember an experience that happened a long time ago.

My cousin and I were really close, we’re practically inseparable. But one day when I was 12, she stopped talking to me, and I had no idea why. It hurt me, because it felt like I lost a best friend. In my sadness, I sat in my mother’s desktop, opened Microsoft word, and started typing everything that I felt about the whole issue. I remembered crying really hard while typing it. I printed the document, left it on the work table, and I walked away.

A few days later in school, my cousin approached me and gave me a brown envelope creatively decorated and addressed to me. Though her action confused me, I was happy, because it was the first time she’d spoken to me in the last few weeks. When I went home, I opened the letter and inside was a couple of index cards with short anecdotes and a long letter. I skipped the index cards and went straight to the paper.

In a nutshell, she expressed how upset she was over me, because I had the tendency to say insulting things to her without realizing it, and I unintentionally hurt her. But she learned to remain patient with me, and apologized. I started crying after reading this letter, because I was relieved that she still wanted to remain friends with me. Of course, I wondered why she decided to make this letter all of a sudden The next time we met, she began talking to me again, and it turned out that my mother came across my document on the table, called my cousin and read the letter to her.

My cousin and I are still really close friends until this day, but reading her letter made me realize that I needed to be careful of what I was saying.

This wasn’t the only instance, when I hadn’t realized what I was saying. A lot of my friends had pointed out my tendency to sound insensitive, because of the things I say. It’s probably because of this, hardly any of my friends approach me for life advice. I believe that I’m a very straightforward person, and it really hurt and confused me to know that my friends thought of me as insensitive.

This experience really affected the way I interact with people nowadays. I’ll be honest, after knowing that, My self-confidence dropped close to zero. I became much quieter, and I wouldn’t talk unless someone genuinely wanted my opinion on something. But some good came out of it as well. Now that I’m aware of my tendency to sound insensitive, I make it a point to be more careful with the things I say to others.

Finding that letter that came from my cousin, got me reflecting on how the smallest experiences can change the way we behave in the future, and I do believe that this experience really changed me as a person. I can’t say that it changed me for the worst, I also believe that it has also taught me to become a better person.

What Does Anxiety Feel Like

What does anxiety feel like? It feels like shit.

Anxiety is seeing that guy who left you. Anxiety is worrying over whether you’re doing good enough. Anxiety is feeling left out in your usual social circles. Anxiety is the pressure not to screw up. You tell yourself you’ll be alright, that it’s not the end of the world, that you’re feeling better. But the moment you try to stand up and move your feet… you can’t.

You look down at your hands, and you notice they’re shaking uncontrollably. The room starts to feel unusually cold, and suddenly, your entire body starts shivering. Something heavy drops inside your chest, it falls further down to your stomach, and you don’t know what exactly it is. You’re trying your best to stay standing, because your legs feel like they’re about to turn into water the moment you make a single move. A rush of heat starts flowing up to your head, and your eyes suddenly feel like they’re burning. You feel like crying, but tears refuse to pool and stream down your face. Your throat starts growing tight, and your heart starts beating fast… so fast it feels like it’s about to burst out of your mouth. Then you start taking small, choking breaths, because you feel like there is a lack of air. The next thing you know, you’re hyperventilating. It doesn’t just last for three minutes, it lasts for almost ten, and you don’t know when it’s going to stop.

You try your hardest to stay strong, but there are moments when you want to give in. After a while, your body begins to grow weak, and your eyelids start to feel heavy. Suddenly, the thought of collapsing on the ground doesn’t sound so bad at all. You start growing tired of everything – tired of thinking, tired of standing, tired of arguing, tired of living… tired of fighting. You just want to fall on all fours, let the negative thoughts consume you, until it becomes so unbearable, you begin to cry. You want the tears to fall, and you don’t want them to stop. You let yourself scream, sob, and hiccup. You allow yourself to cry now, in the hopes that you’ll feel better afterwards. But you don’t feel better, you feel nothing but exhaustion and a terrible headache from the lack of oxygen in your brain. And all you want to do is collapse on your bed, fall asleep, and wake up in the hopes that all your problems have disappeared.

Yes, breaking down does sound like a wonderful idea, but a voice in the back of your head refuses to let you lose. It won’t let you cry, it won’t let you fall down without a fight. That small voice is a like a cheerleader wanting to be heard. It reminds you to calm down, sit down, stop shaking, and breathe. It’s that small voice that’ll tell you to stay strong through the attack, and tell you to show others that you are more than just your anxiety. Once it’s all over, you’ll still feel that terrible exhaustion, but that small voice at the back of your mind will remind you, “You may be tired, but you survived. Now go grab some food, you deserve it.”

Anxiety isn’t just a one-time episode, it can happen as many times as you allow it to. Sometimes, it happens subconsciously when you’re exposed to an event that triggers it. I’ve had my fair share of anxiety for the past 2 years, and sometimes they get worse. The funny thing is that the more you become aware of your anxiety, the more frequent it occurs, and that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Because the more aware you become of your anxiety, the better you’ll understand yourself – who you are, and what you really want in life. And eventually it will help you control your anxiety more easily by avoiding events that trigger it.

Yes, anxiety is a bitch. It is one of the worst feelings imaginable. You’ll want to cry, you’ll want to break down, but in the end, try and push through, because once the attack subsides, you can say to yourself with much pride: “I have anxiety, and I’m still alive. I’ll go through more of these anxiety attacks again, but I know I’ll be okay.”

Thought Catalog

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First you’re going to let yourself miss them.

You aren’t going to call them. You aren’t going to beg them. You aren’t going to plead or bargain or negotiate your way into getting back together. You aren’t going to miss them publically or loudly or desperately but you are going to feel it straight through to the core.

You aren’t going to lie to yourself about feeling amazing and fine. You’re going to feel shitty. You’re going to feel lonely. You’re going to curl up in bed with a warm mug of tea and a huge, hollowed-out heart and you’re going to cry for as many nights in a row as it takes. You’re going to keep yourself together on the outside but make no lies to yourself on the inside. You are hurting. You are reeling. You are going through a thing and that’s okay. You aren’t going…

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Thought Catalog

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He always has that smitten look on his face whenever he’s photographed with her, that one girl he calls ex-girlfriend. With me, it was more of a socially friendly smile even though we were dating at the time. He dated me and claimed he liked me, but he was never in love with me like I hoped he would eventually be. It was my choice and I got what I asked for. I had him, his time, his body. I became the girl who was in love with a guy who didn’t see me the same way, the girl who was too smart to lie to herself but did it anyway, and the girl who never quite knows how to let go.

Evidently, three months after the break up, I found myself crying at the glimpse of that smitten look on his face, once again, because of that same girl. I…

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