As my last day of Wildfire for this season came closer, I thought surely nothing bad will happen, right? I’d just cleanly say bye to my friends and jump on a plane headed to my birthplace without bad thoughts and we’re all good.
But nope. God decided there was one more thing he wanted to show me before I can end that chapter of my life.
On Thursday night, just before my last day for this season, I went on instagram without much thought. I usually watch random people’s instagram out of impulse rather than me being actually interested. So I was just letting them play without my attention fully on them. But then it played Christelle’s IG story and what I saw messed me up.
She was in an Ethiopian restaurant with almost all of the girls in Wildfire. Now, there are very few girls in that youth group. 3/4 of Wildfire consists of guys. Because of that, we girls are all quite familiar with each other. One already left for college, and two are about to. One of them, Nina Metsni, had been saying for the past few weeks that she wants to invite us to eat at an Ethiopian restaurant since she was going to leave for college. So yeah, we we’re all looking forward to it. I also told her to invite me because I’ll definitely be coming (because I’ve known her for so long and I did cherish her a lot as a friend).
But there I was that Thursday staring at my phone for a few seconds. All of the girls were in an Ethiopian restaurant, except Sarah (Pastor’s daughter). All of the girls were there, and I was just sitting in my room, speechless. I helplessly thought of so many things. I told Nina to invite me so many times and I was waiting for her to contact me. I thought maybe it’s just because my phone was on airplane mode that I couldn’t see any texts so I turned it off, but still, nothing. Not a message. Not a call. Not a heads up. So why wasn’t I invited? How could she forget me? Did I do something wrong to her? And how could she invite Keziah (the super shy girl who never talks) and not invite me? But I also thought, even if I wasn’t invited, how come no one at least contacted me to ask why I’m not there? I’m the least busy person in that group, I’m sure, and I always emphasize that to them. Caitlin kept saying she’ll miss me, but did she ever notice that I wasn’t there? What about Christelle? I’ve confessed to her how lonely I usually am but she didn’t care to contact me. So no matter how I think about it, it just doesn’t make any sense. I was hurt.
It mentally messed me up that I was forgotten again right at this very time of the year. Because I remember just last year around July, the band that I thought I was close with all hung out with each other, but I’m the only one not there. Basically, the feelings that I wrote about on “Who Knows Me” (minus the suicide part) resurfaced. The situation was so similar that I just felt so miserable. “Not again…” I kept repeating in my head until I just started crying. It was just so unbelievable to think history would repeat like this when I thought none of these kinds of problems would ever arise again.
I thought maybe God was punishing me for being so picky with my friends the day before. Because at Wednesday, Joslin was basically offering me and Gabriel a ride, but I just subtly rejected it. Ever since Edwin went away, the thought of being alone in the car with Joslin was just so awkward to me because I can’t ever understand that guy and he’s too quiet. I admit, I was subtly avoiding Prasanna intentionally ever since Edwin left. I know I shouldn’t have, but I just wanted save myself from the awkward silence. And that got me riding with the John brothers. And maaaaaan, let’s just say I should’ve ridden with Prasanna and Gabriel instead since John is just… John is John. What was supposed to be a 15 minute ride became 30.
So I guess I’ve already been a little miserable since that night and to get surprised by the Ethiopian dinner made me feel even worse. But then I thought, I shouldn’t bottle this all up to myself. I had to get it out somehow and so while I was crying on my seat, I directed those cries to God. All I remember was just saying a bunch of “Why” at God.
After my cries died down for a bit but with my heart still feeling bitter, I posted a snapchat with nothing but “Why.” I didn’t really think anyone would honestly care about that since nobody follows me that much on snapchat anyway. I felt it was just the only way I could rant. But about a few minutes or so later, Edwin sees it and asks what’s wrong.
Man, that guy…
Since he was caring enough to ask me, I couldn’t help but just want to tell him everything that upset me. So I sent him a whatsapp of the TToTT emoji and he asked me again. But then he said good night right after and that we should talk tomorrow so I didn’t have time to tell him anything. Even if I wasn’t able to vent to him at that time, just the fact that he responded made me feel slightly better. At least he cares.
So all night, up till the morning, I was creating scenarios in my head on how to confront the girls that went on that dinner. At this point their images are just so ruined to me because I feel like they just screwed me over. I was thinking of salty comebacks and dramatic scenes. Basically all of the things I imagined seemed like they could end the friendship and I just couldn’t think of any ways to reconcile with them. It felt impossible and I felt awful. I just didn’t know what to do. I didn’t want to cut ties with them this way, but my feelings were trampled. I just couldn’t think properly. It just depressed me so much. But since I prayed so much to God, I hoped He would not let my imaginations let loose. I prayed he wouldn’t end things like this. I prayed He would fix this situation for me in His own way.
And oh my God, He did.
When we got to church, I tried really hard to be cheerful in front of my parents, but every time I thought of meeting my friends a few hours later, my stomach would just crumple. As I said, everything just felt ruined to me. The image I had of my friends just fell apart. But then, the pastor’s sermon… was about reconciliation. It was about Joseph being reconciled by his brothers who totally screwed him over. And I… wow. I just. Okay, um, so I knew I had to listen closely. Basically, the point of that whole sermon was that there is reconciliation when you have God and after that my heart was just so ready for how my own situation will turn out.
And what do you know, right after the service ended, there was Jessica just a row behind me. She was supposed to attend the service at the main hall, but since she woke up late, she arrived late and thus attended the overflow room. Now that I think about it, it’s not at all a mistake for her to wake up that late even though she thought so. I feel like God did that on purpose—for me. Because the moment the service ended and Jessica and I met eyes, I couldn’t stay angry at her. She greeted me so warmly that I just didn’t have it in me to blow up at her any time soon.
When we finally got out of the overflow room together, I was able to gently ask if she had fun last night (at the dinner). She said yeah and asked me why I didn’t come. I was able to say that I just wasn’t invited and she was shocked that I wasn’t. Apparently she didn’t even know that I was not invited because it was just Nina who organized it all. Because I was basically left out, Jessica said that she will definitely talk about this with her and scold her for it. Those words started to make me feel better.
At Wildfire, Christelle and Caitlin pretty much said the same thing, that they had no idea who was coming or not and felt really bad that I wasn’t invited. Even Nardeen (our only female leader) who also went to the dinner, felt bad that I wasn’t invited. She was really sorry, and she said that they did not mean anything by it. So since everyone basically felt bad for me and was sorry that I wasn’t invited, my heart felt lighter. I still don’t know how I feel about Nina, though. She hasn’t contacted me at all. I don’t want to hate her. I just don’t know what to think about her. I’m just disappointed, I guess. I thought we were really good friends, too. I drew her. twice. I gave her a piece of myself. I gave her courage to go up on stage to say a piece she had written once. I don’t know how she could just forget me like that. I thought I at least meant something to her…
With the drama finished, I was back to my cheery self again. When Wildfire ended, Christelle, Vida, and I jammed and oh, how I loved every second they sang together. Christelle and Vida thought so, too. I was so happy that they sang together. I knew Christelle needed to taste the good feeling of singing with someone who knows what they’re doing at least once and Vida was the perfect person for it. Vida’s voice always seem to fit anyone else’s with her soulful, soft voice. When she harmonizes, she gives the main vocalist a huge boost. It fit Christelle’s loud voice so much. Since Christelle likes harmonizing as well, she was able to finally do it comfortably when Vida takes the lead.
Since we were enjoying and losing our minds at how good we were sounding, we just wanted to jam some more. So I figured, hey it’s my last day for this season and I might not be able to hear this majestic pair together again. So I invited them to jam at my house and they were both up for it.
So we jammed for an hour and a half and I was basically in Heaven every time they sang. And since I basically had this idea for a while now of mashing up Charlie Puth’s We Don’t Talk anymore with Justin Beiber’s Sorry, when they pulled it off (not exactly how I wanted but it was still so damn good) I was just so happy. We also sang an emo verision of I Knew You Were Trouble. Then I See Fire, When I Was Young, Shape Of You, and some gospel songs. We even shot a video of some of it and I’m still waiting for Vida to send me those…
After jamming, Vida asked me to go watch with a bunch of Wildfire friends Wonder Woman later at 6. Actually, she had been saying I should come ever since Wildfire ended. Since I’m never exactly sure if I’m going to sudden hangouts, I never answer yes. And as we have learned… people here don’t know what “I’m not coming” means. They’d literally tell you to go nonstop. I didn’t even want to go since I already watched Wonder Woman with my parents, but when Vida told me to come after our jam session, I thought differently. I mean Vida—I can’t really refuse her. She reminds me a lot of my oldest girl cousin. She has that kind of innocent and fun charm that I can’t say no to. And since Christelle also decided to come, I had almost no choice. I had to go. It was my last wildfire day for the season anyway and I’m not gonna see a lot of those Wildfire people for the next 3 months. What’s there to lose? I should have fun. I should forget about what disappointed me the night before. I should make better memories!
So I went, and it was a little early. Basically, we waited for about one and a half hours for everyone to arrive. Since the movie was still around 9, we decided we should eat for now. And so, I went with some of them to the extension of the mall. Around that time, which was 7 or 8, there were so many people on every restaurant. As for me who’s so easy going, I just decided to order whatever my friends would on McDonalds, but seeing the long ass line, I knew I had to make a choice. I cannot stand in line just to order some unhealthy crap, so I waited for an escape route to that place. When Christelle called Vida saying she was finally at the mall, I took that as thing to excuse myself from McDonalds. I decided to walk back (with the younger John) at the main mall’s food court to find Christelle and order at the best burger place, MAX. For me who hates being on lines or any place in general that has too many people, MAX was a treat since few people order from that even at the peak hours of dinner. It taste healthier than the other burger fastfood chains, too. And so, after getting our own food, we had about an hour of just talking and making jokes at the food court. We were there for so long that we were able to see the crowds of people come down until there were like just two to three filled tables around that wide space. We obviously stayed there for a long time just to watch Wonder Woman.
When we finally got to the theater, we took some pictures. Then we watched Wonder Woman. I had a little bit of greed when it came to the seats. The younger John told Christelle to save him a seat but I casually sat at that seat since I wanted to be beside Christelle. Besides, Edwin has said that they might have a thing going on and hey, I don’t ship them at all. Might as well be a cockblock for now lol. Since I watched the movie already, I was able to tell her and Sebastian some little details here and there. I really liked the movie even after watching it the second time, but what made this one better was Christelle’s reactions. She was so noisy and she kept saying “yaaasss” at all the scenes when Wonder Woman was being a badass. She would even cheer and clap when she did something great. It was the funniest thing ever.
After that, the time was about 12PM and my mom was already texting me to go home. After the movie we were still taking pictures and saying goodbye to each other so I wasn’t able to go home quickly. Since I didn’t want to make the same mistake of not telling my mom when I’ll be home, I texted her every instance when I know I’ll be held by my friends. By doing that, at least I didn’t get a scolding when I got home. All was good. The whole day ended nicely.
Or did it…?
I went home and saw Edwin had left me some messages. After Christelle and Vida left my house in the afternoon, Edwin and I chatted for a while. I told him about us jamming and how heavenly their voices were. And then I asked about his day. He was still depressed about what happened to him–suddenly going to college and all that. I told him I’d pray for him and he was thankful for that. Since he opened up to me a little, I opened up myself too and told him the reason for my breakdown last night. I told him about how it messed me up not being invited for that Ethiopian restaurant farewell or whatever. He said he saw those posts too and he was baffled as well seeing that I wasn’t there. Even he knew that Keziah being there made no sense either. I’m glad I’m not the only one who noticed those things. But I told him I was finally okay and that I didn’t upset me anymore. And so he says bye saying he has to study. The conversation ends and I got ready to head to the mall to watch Wonder Woman. But an hour after he said goodbye, he comes back again and asks if Christelle had worn a pink top earlier. Since I wasn’t at home, I didn’t see it and he sent messages like “Mia? U there? Hello?”
So when I finally came back at home, at 12 am I replied to him. I aslo said sorry since I watched Wonder Woman with people. I didn’t say Wildfire fearing he’d get jealous, but I guess that wasn’t right to say…
He replies the coming morning with “Now I know what it felt like when the girls went for Ethiopian night. And now, when all you guys go for a movie, and I’m not even mentioned, like not even brought up, like not even like ‘gosh I wish Edwin was here’… So yeah, now I know what it felt.”
The moment I read that, my heart just froze. I didn’t mean to hurt his feelings. The least I wanted was for him to hurt the same way I did just two nights before. So I said to him that everyone said that they did wish he was there but it didn’t exactly cheer him up. And so he continues to say,
“It’s okay, I guess. I think I deserve all of this. Like I’m such a dumbf*** (he literally wrote dumbf***) Like what was I even thinking. Geez man. I think I’ll buy a cave now and just think how life will add up.”
I quickly replied, “Why, what makes you a dumbfukc? I mean we all are pretty much one.” I said that because I recognized his feelings. It’s his depression and he’s starting to hate himself. I’ve dealt with my own self-hatred by myself in the past but seeing that he was being verbal about it is actually sad and negative and it just hurt me. My conscience couldn’t handle it if I could not make him feel better.
“Nah, you guys are pretty much some of the coolest people I’ve ever met… even though I bumped into Mark Zuckerberg in Dubai.”
“Hey I look at you that way, too,” I replied, dismissing his reply to make this all lighter. “And I look at myself as someone who sucks so much.”
“Pls. Well you think wrong about yourself then.”
“Even though you think I’m a legend, I have thoughts that are horrible.” And as I quoted what he said (Well you think wrong about yourself then), I said, “And you think wrong about yourself, too.”
“Nah, you’re like the legend of legends,” he says to me.
“And did you that even though I’m a “legend”, without all the things that made me one, I’m basically a loser?”
“Nah, are you kidding me rn!??! You and loser are two different worlds.”
“I’m not good at making friends. Man I don’t even think I could be friends with guys until you came along.”
“Pls. Who was Joslin then?”
“You included me when I feel a little left out. Joslin is another story. We were never really close and I don’t think we’ll ever be.”
“What about John Surya? What about Jordan? What about Jonathan? And the ex wildfire band?”
“John is an okay friend but I can’t keep up with him and I just tease him. Jordan is just a leader to me and a spiritual guide.”
“Jonathan is just my music buddy. He’s not exactly what I can call a close friend. I consider very few people my ‘friend’ and to think that I could call you a close friend already says so much about you.”
He seems to be shocked by that at that point that he just poured out to me, “Okay fine, you got me. I’m actually really sad. Like after lurking at the groupie, like I cried a lot. And then I messaged you. Since Gabe was not gonna reply early… And plus you are online every time XDDDDDD.” He must be really upset when I didn’t answer that afternoon if he thought I would reply so quickly when in fact I was part of the group he wanted to be in. I completely understood what he felt so I continue to make him feel better.
“Aw, tbh this school year is the only year I felt I had such good friends.”
“But of all 8 years I’ve been here, I was like you.”
“But I feel sad for you. You are gonna graduate like so early. Your height isn’t even eligible XDDD Jk. I’m not height-ist. RIP ENGLISH XDDDDDD”
Dismissing his joke, I said, “I was always crying whenever I see a group of people that are my friends and to see I’m never there.”
“Oh man… that’s sad… :(”
“That’s why I cherish everyone as much as I can… and cry to God as much as I can when I get hurt seeing those things. Because I’ve felt it too many times thinking I’m never anyone’s close friend but then this school year happened and I became close with Christelle. And we’re basically sharing these stuff about ourselves right now.”
“Hmmmmm. Wow. Jus wow. Like I still can’t believe that one of ma bestie is a Filipino Legend who’s basically a Panda and can play any instrument…”
*I send bunch of Panda emojis*
“Well more like a shorter version of panda. XDDDDDDD Jk.”
“I can’t deny it’s tru XDDD” I said, finally letting him do those jokes. If he takes joy in teasing me, if he feels slightly better by doing so, then I’ll let him do whatever he pleases.
That night, I was just overwhelmed with so much happiness and thankfulness. I realized that the thing I used to pray and wonder about is actually coming true. This is from one of the first blogs I’ve ever posted, and I’ve quoted it a few times before:
“Life truly is something. Through so much let down, one can have the urge to give up. But I’ve realized that after all these different relationships, there were so much things I’ve learned from each of them, not just about friendship, but also about myself—things that were once a mystery to me…. I believe my different experiences with different friendships prepare me for the future. It’s slowly molding me to be the perfect piece that I should be when that one person comes—for that soul mate out there somewhere in the world living right now, for that person who will always stand by me.”
But one thing I might want to change on that quote is the last part.
It’s slowly molding me to be the perfect piece that I should be when that one person comes—for that soul mate out there somewhere in the world living right now, for that person who will always stand by me.”
“It’s slowly molding me to be the perfect piece that I should be when the right person comes, or for the people who will need the love I have to offer.”
It can’t just be about me wanting things from people anymore because God has molded me into someone that can show His love. So I’m not even going to ask for new friends so that I can make myself any happier. Although that would be good, the only thing I want this coming year is for my current friends to stay being friends with me. If new people come in, whether in the near future or next year, what I’m gonna ask is for God to give me a friend that can lean on me, open up to me, so that I can do the same. We could build each other up because it seems that’s what real friendship is all about.
There’s more to learn about the world around me and I pray God shows me His ways again on this new coming season.