Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Knowing Her.... (30 Posts Before the I Dos)


          There is this question that girls and women often ask when they start getting serious in a relationship: ‘Is he the one?’ They probably ask this more than ten times in their lives (I’d say around twenty times on average, hehe).

            Men ask it too. Except maybe on a lesser frequency, like maybe an average of two or three times. Which does not imply that women have a frivolous nature… far from it. It’s one of those ‘women are from venus’ kind of things.

            In the average lifetime of an average Joe, he meets lots of women. He fantasizes about 30% of them (a fact of life), flirts with a few, and gets serious with probably two or three of them. For the rest, it’s probably infatuation or a phase (sorry to say but for men who enter into lots of relationships in life, he is probably only seriously considering a lifelong commitment in just two or three at the max).

            That’s why men will only say the words ‘I love you’ sparingly.

            Because they know instinctively that serious relationships are rare and is a gem that is hard to come by…. Or rather that women who would evoke long term commitments from a man are a dime a dozen.

            So how do you know if the woman in front of you is the one?

            I guess that is the question that everyone is dying to ask. For women asking, there are a lot of magazine articles in Cosmopolitan or other similar publications that will tell you biased and more often frivolous answers to the question. We men laugh when we read them, by the way. Hehe

            But what about for men? How do we know?

            Well… it’s no secret really.

            We just know.

            It’s as simple and as complicated as that. In the beginning of a relationship, we are definitely attracted by a woman’s physical charm (men who deny it are hypocrites). Let me clarify, however, that when I say physical charm, it’s not the idealized beauty that women’s magazines and women’s minds conjure. Yeah, we fantasize about beautiful women but we men know that those kinds of ‘beauty’ are unrealistic and naïve aspirations at best. Physical charm is different and it varies from woman to woman. Each woman has a unique set of it. Some men get attracted, some are repulsed and others merely pass it by.

           Because the beauty of a woman is unique to her. She has a charm that is distinctively hers. It is not a universal measured statistic that can be reduced to numbers. Which women don’t get really…

            So let’s just leave it at that.

            At first you have an attraction. 90% of the time, physical (the number could be higher). It is the door opener of sorts. Then you get to meet (dates) and you have those conversations that build up on the initial attraction. It’s the conversations that make or break it. The more you get to know each other verbally and go through the motions of the dating game, men get that moment in which a light bulb goes off in their mind. Actually, it either goes on or shuts down.

            Knowing she’s the one is one of the ‘wow’ moments in life. Indescribable and utterly mind boggling. It’s one of the few moments of life that cannot be explained by logical explanations.

            It just happens. And men know when it happens.

            And for me?

            It happened in a couch as we just sat together waiting for the model she was applying make-up on and who I was to photograph, finish her thing in front of the mirror. In between awkward silences, sheepish smiles and small talk, the ‘light bulb’ opened up.

           And I just knew right then and there that there is no other woman I want to spend the rest of my life with… other than the one right beside me.

          Women will probably ask me to elaborate more (as she often does) how I really came to know that she is the one.

         Short and truthful answer?

          I can’t.

         That’s the truth. I can enumerate the things I like about her but are those the reasons why I know?

          No, they just come with her. It’s the whole of her, what I like and what I don’t like. Her mannerisms and her ticks and tocks. That and much, much more…

          Because this is the truth that all men know: we don’t fall for a woman because of what she brings to the table. We don’t fall in love because the woman is beautiful, humble, nice, naughty or lovable. We fall in love because of her – the whole package of who she is and if it is real, it doesn’t matter if she is deficient in some other aspect.

          Because when we find the one as I did, we know… we just know that she is the one…

          And out of all the odds, we found each other.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

30 Posts Before the I Do's (And More...) Initial Thoughts

I am getting married in 37 days.

I know that exact number because there is an app in my phone that keeps track of it.

And men aren’t supposed to keep track of these things. It’s one of the ‘stuff of life’ that just happens. I mean, ain’t it less of a hassle if you just wake up one morning and you go through your normal routine and your friend (who happens to be your best man) drops in, shares a beer and then slyly reminds you that you are getting hitched in an hour? And you give him a befuddled look and you realize ‘Yeah right… I am getting married today’

Except for me, that’s not gonna happen. And my fiancée will probably have my hide if ever I forgot about my own wedding, haha.

So yeah, I am getting married in approximately thirty seven days, gave or take a few hours.

So you might be asking: How does it feel?

How does it feel?


If you are asking that on the context of my bank account, then it is the most financially nerve-wracking event of my life so far. I mean, how expensive is a ribbon, anyway? And why do we need stuff like colored stones and plastic flowers? My fiancée is going to kill me. Bottomline… weddings are expensive. And honestly, I cringe sometime looking at those figures but in the long run as I see her artistic ideas come into form, I grin sheepishly. Coz marriage comes just once and it is best to give it your all to last your lifetime.

If you are asking on the context of my emotions… that’s something of a conundrum for me. I love the sense of belongingness that marriage signifies – the stability of emotions that it creates and the feeling of ‘home’ that one feels. On the other hand, I can’t just mope around in my room as I wish or pound the keyboard as I desire. The ‘freedom’ of singlehood is tempered now by domestic realities. One must learn how to hold anger,  to appease, and to hold back one’s own feelings to accommodate the other’s sentiments.  It’s a delicate balancing act best summed up by this adage ‘In marriage, you don’t think primarily of yourself anymore, you now have to adapt and realize that there are two of you now and the things you do (and feel) must take this fact in absolute consideration’. So yeah, my emotions are different now. How different? That’s for another post, probably.

If you are talking about my state of being (or contentment), then the answer is…. I’m uhmm… contented. Hahaha… People are probably smiling right now. But I am definitely contented. It’s hard to explain it really as words cannot really do it justice. Let’s put it this way: some of us have that place we call ‘our place’, the place we go to when we are in pain or simply in need of comforting. It can be physical… a spot underneath a tree, a section of our room, a place on the roof or something intangible that exists in the recesses of our minds, a place we crawl into when the world turns on us. Remember the feeling when you go into that place? That is the same…. Contentment, that is…

If you are asking if I am under pressure or stressed, I will say ‘Yeah, I feel a certain degree of stress.’ Who wouldn’t? More so probably on the bride who troubles herself on the color of ribbons and other stuff (like ‘our color is fuchsia, not pink or some other color’ when I chide her on it). My stress is on other stuff, though like ‘Who is gonna clean after we get married in the park?’ Or Do we stay after the reception and clean everything up? Who’s gonna be in charge of the slideshows and other technical stuff? I see the underbelly of the marriage ceremony, the stuff that makes it tick. If marriage is a clock, I worry about the gears. Which is funny, in a way… maybe…

I must admit that I really don’t care much about the superficial wedding stuff. I kid her on the décor and the other details (that have nothing to do with food or the main stuff). I don’t care if the seats have no covers or the tables are bare and unappealing. Coz sometimes those stuff just gets in the way. The heart of marriage lies when you look at each other and pledge your lives together. When you see soul to soul and smile and dedicate yourselves together in the eyes of God and other men. It is an intimate sacrament between two lovers.

Haha. She will probably skin me alive. LOL. But weddings... for women, is something that men shouldn't trifle with. It happens once in a lifetime, for keeps... a special moment which no man must ruin. LOL.

I love my fiancee.

When everything comes down to the core, this statement is the summation of everything. She is the woman that completes me.

She is the whole reason for this madness...

And I won't have it any other way...

Monday, July 9, 2012

The Months I Paused Writing...

How many days has it been?

Months,  probably….

End of November.

Was that the last time I wrote something in my blog?

I think it is.

I thought that I would be lost without it. It’s been a part of my life for so long that a separation from it would have been unthinkable, or inconceivable… I thought I’d be sad or worse yet remorseful… but I felt neither.

The feeling I got instead was something more of a mild relief – an assurance that writing is not the addiction that I can’t live without. The last few months without penning a word showed me that I can live beyond the imagined worlds that my thoughts offered. It helped me realize how multi – faceted life is and my place in it.

The sense of being – the knowledge of oneself is the price of that brief interlude. I am no longer just a writer; or a poet; or a teacher (or a former-teacher). I am that and much more. I am a son, a brother, a friend and now too, a lover, a father and a husband to be.

It is amusing when one realizes how many areas of life human like us fail to see in a lifetime. Life is a constant juggling act of various interests and roles. Only consummate individuals willing to sacrifice other aspects to be masters of a few emerge as different suffering both the boon and bane of their choices.

I love words.

I love how imaginary characters and places come to life with every click of keyboard…

I love the euphoria that is released when I have a story that unfolds in my mind and my hands fly over the keyboard to give it a concrete expression…

And I love the rapt emotions that my pieces elicit from my readers…

But my short vacation, if you will from writing, has made me realize a deeper truth. I wrote because of a deeper, much more basic reason – a reason which I probably knew but never really accepted.

I wrote because I was lonely.

I wrote because deep inside I was afraid to fade away and wilt unheard and unseen. Like all human souls that yearn for affection, I craved recognition and companionship…

And the reason I didn’t feel the withdrawal symptoms I feared when I decided to stop writing was short of amazing –
This is what I realized these last few months:

I am not alone anymore.

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