If you and I are friends on Facebook or Twitter, you’d see for sure that I’m still on a high from my first wedding anniversary getaway with Mr C. Actually, I’m on a high from our first wedding anniversary in general. That’s why I’ve decided to declare September as ‘Anniversary Month’! I’ve been raving about this week being ‘Anniversary Week’ for the last month or so, but apparently a week just isn’t enough to contain my joy, excitement and love.
So it came as such a delight when my dear mommy friend Purnima over at World Moms Blog asked the contributors to share stories about how we met our significant others for this week’s Saturday Sidebar. It didn’t take long for me to come up with my reply. It is, after all, the same story I’ve been telling for the last thirteen years – “My husband and I were highschool sweethearts. And we continue to behave like highschool sweethearts to this day.”
It all began in the year 1998, when I was but an awkward highschool sophomore. I’d been in the same school since the first grade, and being the sociable person that I am, I figured I already knew most of our batch. On the first day of class, I made a mental inventory of those I hadn’t met yet. Two (or three) seats up from me was this skinny guy with glasses and unruly hair, Something Cuyugan. He was apparently best friends with Yogi, someone I’ve known since the first grade, and who eventually stood as best man at our wedding.
We eventually became acquainted, but had such different personalities that we would argue a lot! Now let me tell you this – the best way to get my attention is to challenge me. Contradict me, argue with me, try to prove me wrong. I can’t explain it, but that’s what gets to me. And this skinny guy right here was doing a pretty good job at it. Of course, it helped that I actually thought he was cute (I went through this ‘skinny guys with glasses and messy hair’ phase, and my best friend can certainly attest to that). To this day, Mr C brags about how I had a crush on him first. I concede, but I also think that he secretly liked me too, deep down inside, otherwise he wouldn’t have wasted all that time trying to annoy me. 🙂
Some of our classmates eventually noticed that we had some sort of chemistry, whether it was negative or positive, and started teasing us. This went on until the end of the school year.
Summer came and we would chat often over mIRC and ICQ. Does anyone even remember these chat clients??? I think we spoke on the phone a few times. I saw him during enrollment day at school. There I found out we weren’t going to be in the same class in the coming year. I was a bit bummed, but it wasn’t that big a deal.
On the first day of junior year, I was surprised to see Cuyugan listed a few names before mine on the class list posted on the door. I thought to myself that this would be an interesting year. Interesting was spot on, maybe even a bit understated.
Things went on as they did the previous year. We ended up falling in with the same group of friends in class, and we continued to piss each other off on a daily basis. Although, by this time, we took on a friendlier manner of annoying one another, if that’s even possible. We ran different circles, so our time together was mostly confined to class hours. We eventually got into similar school activities, and ended up spending a little extra time together. Back then, mobile phones were only for our working parents, and pagers were all the rage. You couldn’t page without having access to a phone, so interaction was mostly personal, apart from notes passed in class. Albeit low-tech, those were really fun times, and they worked just fine for me.
Fast forward to November 1999. It was the school’s foundation week and the whole student body was in a festive mood. On November 17, a big group from our batch got together to celebrate our loss in the inter-batch cheering competition. It was sort of a big deal because the juniors always win, and we sort of broke a really long winning streak. We hung out that night and somewhere between him and me and bottles of San Miguel Beer and Smirnoff Mule, we kissed for the first time. Part of me thought it would be the last time, simply because we never really spoke of liking each other. I’m glad he proved me wrong. Like I said, I always thought he secretly liked me. LOL.
That first kiss turned into more stolen kisses and hand-holding, dinner dates, hours and hours of talking on the phone, letters, photos, and irreplaceable memories. We found each other early in life, and there were times when we tried to break away from each other. We got into other relationships in the years that followed, but we never stopped talking. We would get together in secret for a movie or a meal. We turned to each other for advice. We shared private jokes, called each other first when things weren’t going so well, and never failed to tell the other of our milestones, no matter how big or small. We grew together, and we grew as individuals on our own too. Eventually, we found ourselves both single and spending more and more time together, and we decided to stop running away from each other. The rest, as they say, is history.
What a history ours has been. By no means has any of it been easy, but all of it was worth it. I honestly would not like to relive any of the bad times, but to tell you the truth, I would not change a thing, even if I could. I remember a quote from the movie Just Married, from that scene where Ashton Kutcher was talking to his dad about his awful honeymoon with Brittany Murphy.
“Some days your mother and me loved each other. Other days we had to work at it. You never see the hard days in a photo album… but those are the ones that get you from one happy snapshot to the next. I’m sorry your honeymoon stunk but that’s what you got dealt. Now you gotta work through it.”
The last thirteen years, all the good and the bad that came with it, was what we got dealt. We have a whole box full of photos to show how far we’ve come, and how we’ve done such a good job at getting past the bad times. Our story began with a first kiss in 1999, moved up to a first kiss as husband and wife twelve years later, and continues on with every kiss shared when we wake each morning and every night before we go to sleep. No matter what life deals us in the years to come, I know we’ll get by.
Our secret? We continue to behave like highschool sweethearts to this day. We hold hands when we walk, we show affection in public, we have fun with each other and enjoy each others’ company. We start and end every day together, but never take the other’s presence for granted. Most importantly, we find ways to make the other fall in love with us all over again, and kiss like each time is the first.
Come what may, til death do us part.
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