The New M.E. Generation











My high school friend graduated a year before I did. My brother was on the same class and attending the graduation without him being there was a somber night for me.

This period represented a new stage in my life. My friend and brother were going away to college in a few months, which meant I would be alone at home with mom and my Senior year would start.

I was looking forward to this time, but was also lost of what to do with education and myself, especially when he was away.

I felt somewhat lost without my support system. And my insecurities about my intelligence and grades for my college application had me on the edge.

I kept thinking how in spite all he did he managed to get to the school of his choice. He knew exactly what he wanted to do for a career and how he would make it happen. Me, I didn’t have a clue what to expect for dinner that night.

The last memory I have of my friend during this time was of him coming to terms about ending high school, but glad he would go away from all this and start engaging in what he really loved.

He legally completed his studies, but don’t recall that he received the diploma. I believe he mentioned having to get a lawyer so there would be a record filed in school and Education Department that he had completed all the high school requirements.

That made me even more sad and puzzled about life in general and of witnessing this happening to someone I cared about.

That’s probably why I was overwhelmed; my mom had high expectations of me, my brother was the center of attention for always, and my mom was trying to adjust to this major change at home.

The summer went normal. I would see my friend at the pharmacy whenever I could. I don’t recall saying good-bye in person. I probably did over the phone and holding back my tears. After all he went through to finish school, the least I could do was to be supportive towards him and not add any additional pressure.

I do recall that when he and my brother left, I sat at my room looking around and thinking, ‘now what?’ It wouldn’t be the first moment that I felt that I was totally on my own without someone to hold my hand to lead the way.

It was as scary as when my ‘x’ walked out the door for good. Thinking about it now brings back this feeling, but incredibly I managed to overcome it all and stay in one piece.

So why am I still sad? Because I miss my friend and it hurts losing the friendship. This is not what was meant to be, but as he and I have done, I will hold my head up, knowing that no matter what, I will make it through this time and will be just fine.



I somehow managed to finally fall asleep. The weather was cooler than normal, so it was nice to be in bed resting.

I didn’t immediately get out of bed upon waking up. I knew well what had evolved the previous night: he wanted to drive all the way over here and show up (not exactly unannounced); better yet, surprise me on Valentine’s weekend.

You’re probably thinking why I didn’t go for it when I keep saying that I should get exposed to these type of situations.

As stupid as it may seem, I wasn’t up for it last night. Blame it on my comfy bed, me being tired, or perhaps that I had washed my hair and didn’t want to get it messed up.

It just gets to the point that if you know nothing else will evolve here, why put your time and emotions into it?

I know I could just do it for the fun of it and later remember the incident as one that made this particular weekend unique.

But as weird as this may sound, perhaps the real reason is that I unconsciously felt this would be a grown-up version of what happened during high school.

The memories are limited, but between what I’ve learned from his stories and the little I remember, the scenario is just the same: he’s into me, but not enough or interested to taking it further.

That I could have had a jolly, good time (and maybe more) is true. But at this point in my life, I’ve learned to do that with my girlfriends, but most importantly, on my own, without the need of having a guy next to me.

And then, at exactly 10:10am, the beach guy resurfaced.

‘Good morning. You know I would have driven there for the day,’ text he.

‘But you’re with your daughter.’

‘She’s 17 and her 18-year-old brother is here. They will be fine overnight or for the day. I could have even left late last night, but you were so stubborn about your address. I guess you didn’t get the hint.’

‘I fell asleep. And thought you couldn’t leave your kids home alone.’

‘The little one is out of state and the two I have with me are old enough to be alone.

‘You can still come here. I have off tomorrow.’

‘I have to work tomorrow and I’m not driving there just to be with you for a couple of hours.’

See what I mean? It felt just like the good old days. He would spend a few hours with me at the beach and off he went. The day would have evolved the same, minus the location.

I was sort of still questioning myself about my indifference, but not any more. You realize what I did? I rejected him!!

Wow! And maybe for the first time, the sand blew up to him and hit him hard on the face. Nice!

This is definitely one memory I’m surely not forgetting.



Another 2 days went by before I got another reply, this time around 4am and still on a work week.

I wondered again if he was getting up or going to bed and what his whereabouts were. In other words, were you at home or, most probably, somebody else’s place?

Back in my days when I was doing my undergrad and living on campus, if you returned very late to your room, it had to be that you were either at the library (that was the main excuse everyone used) studying or writing a paper, or at the computer center.

Yes, I said the computer center. That’s where people went to type their papers before personal ones became a normal thing to have. And the place was open (I believe) until midnight or beyond.

If those 2 locations weren’t it, then it meant you were probably having some sort of relationship with someone else and managed to spend the night with that person. You either convinced the other roommate to go sleep somewhere else, or that other person slept in your bed with the roommate there as well.

Doing the second was no easy task, as having roommates was difficult per se and meant losing more of the little space and privacy you already had.

Then there was the situation if anyone called you. It was one phone paid by many and the calls were usually from parents, family, or significant others living at school or not.

The calls would mostly occur after 10pm as they knew all classes were done for the day, you already had dinner, etc.

But, that was not always the case. If you took the call, you had the misfortune of telling the caller that your roommate wasn’t there and that you didn’t know where she was, either that was true or not.

It was an uncomfortable situation because you always sounded as you were lying and hiding something.

Then there was the task of having to call them back and explain yourself. After saying ‘you were studying’, things would quiet down until the same scenario happened again.

Yes, it was a time that keeping track of others was no easy task, but is it that different now? Not really, except that all devices are personal and mobile, and you have total control in how you manage them.

In a way it’s harder as no one else knows what you’re doing, that is, if you keep it quiet to yourself.

So what am I thinking right now? That he probably had some chemistry with a girl in his biology class and decided to take it beyond the books. After all, he’s young, good looking and has goals for the future. What girl wouldn’t like that?

This got me thinking; this guy got my attention not necessarily for his merits, but because it’s making me remember my time in college.

That was a special time, as I finally got a chance to be on my own and started to discover who I really was, just like when I became single again.

The negative part is the age difference, which is making me feel old, and that feeling is not good at all.

I may have reversed the effects of what I’ve gone through, but there’s no ‘time’ capsule for the other half of the equation.

You have to swallow it no matter what.



I waited about 2 days and called him before going to sleep. To my surprise, he answered the phone.

Once again, he sounded he wasn’t exactly on this world; it was more like being away on dreamland, but not upset that I called.

“Oops, did I wake you up?” asked I.

“No, I’m in bed relaxing.”

Hmm, it felt very inviting for a moment. Yet, he has always shared his space with all those problematic women, but never with me. I wondered why and couldn’t find an answer.

“All those women you date got you all worn out?” continued I.

“I only date one woman at a time, you know that.”

“Sounds to me like one far too many.”

Ivan didn’t answer. He knows I’m right and I’m sure he wasn’t interested in me giving him a speech yet again about how badly he manages his love life.

“I wanted to call you to thank you for listening to me the other day. I know I got all emotional, but it was all bottled up and just couldn’t control myself.”

“I understand. No worries. Listen, there’s a free dating site you should try.”

“What?? Didn’t you say to me you wanted to take a break? How many women have you met or dated?”

“Just a few, but that was not a recent thing. I really intend to be on my own for a while.”

“At the rate you’re going, next time I speak with you, I bet you’re in a relationship, maybe living with that person, you eloped or moved to the other side of the world. With you, anything is possible.”

“It’s also possible that for once in my life I will finally follow through on what I say.”

“You know what will happen next? I will get into this site you’re talking about and come across your photo.”

“No, it’s not active right now.”

“It’s a surprise to hear that, but a good start indeed. I will give it a try and let you know.”

“You will find someone. Remember, be patient. Everything will be good in the long run. Trust me.”

Trust you when you can’t even do that with yourself? Please, don’t make me laugh! Actually, it’s not a bad idea.

And regarding the site, hey, it’s free. What have I got to lose?

For starters, my dignity and sanity. That can be followed by my lack of patience and sense of lost hope that I will ever meet someone worth anything.

I know Ivan means well, but he’s the last person whom I would take romantic advice.

On that aspect, trust me, I know, plenty.



{December 16, 2013}   Looking Back 24 – Show me the way

The next day I took my high school friend to the airport to take a flight back home.

It was early in the morning and I was still exhausted from my long weekend. Plus, I had to go to work.

I got really sad on the way. We had been living in different locations pretty much after graduating from high school.

We have managed to keep our friendship going throughout the years. But being together on the same place for a few days, like we just did, barely. I know it will probably be many more years before we get to see each other again.

He has been to me something more than just a friend. His guidance and support have been gifts that no one else has given me.

Now he was leaving and for me it was back to facing life on my own again.

Before he entered the airline gate, we hugged each other strongly. I thanked him for everything, which included more than this trip; it was a lifelong gratitude.

He saw how I felt and looked at me saying, “You’re going to be fine. Follow my advice like you’ve always done. It will save you a lot of heartbreak.”

I waited for him to enter the airport and kept looking at the door for a few seconds before driving away.

I kept thinking at what he said and said to myself, ‘Yes, I have to be fine. He has shown me the way and he expects nothing else from me but that.’



“Girl, seriously, you didn’t see this one coming?” asked Madelyn.

“I guess I was so concentrated on the friendship thing, I blinded myself from everything else.”

“I meant for someone to honestly have feelings for you. Look at you, you have many good qualities as a person, and he noticed them. I think the real problem is that you are still hung up on the idea that no guy will really get you for what you really are or that there is really someone out there in this world that is truly going to be the love of your life. Or is there another side to this?”

“I don’t feel the same way as he does.”

“Sounds to me that what you really wanted from this experience was to find a friend. Have you seriously asked yourself why are you doing this? Well, too late now. You have to resolve the present issue at hand.”

She’s right, she always is. I realized I used the ‘friendship’ as another shield from giving myself a chance with another person. Being a friend means the level of emotions is more reserved than those romantic ones, creating a safe environment to maneuver, like those with Madelyn and Dina.

There’s no commitment and have the freedom to do as one pleases. Perhaps the real issue here is that I’ve become so accustomed to being on my own that I do want to have other guys next to me, but not on a serious level just yet.

I didn’t respond to Alex right away. In the end the trip was not to occur. Madelyn decided not to go through the expense and Alex couldn’t leave the city for work reasons.

He did want to spend time with me during those days, but in a different way from what we have done so far.

Oh, oh, this one I definitely did not see it coming.



Whatever Jeffrey and I shared, it kept going for a few months (on and off, of course).

I wasn’t thinking about what to expect or even hope for it. I took it as it came because other situations had taken priority.

The divorce was about to be finalized and one of the agreements was that I would move out of the residence. That meant I would loose the home I worked so hard to build, and downsize my existence into a smaller place.

On top of that, the lease on my vehicle was about to expire and my job was on the line.

The time was coming close for me to face the world on my own, and I was utterly scared.

And, like it happens in life, may it be good or bad things, when they come, they do in multiples.

I was working on the computer when Jeffrey sent me a text message: ‘I can’t keep doing this any longer. It’s not fair for anyone.’  I felt as if someone had just stabbed me on my heart.

The thing I had dreaded the most happened. He was walking out of my life. And the thing I shouldn’t have done, also happened. I had fallen for him.

I knew his departure would eventually happen, but did it have to be now?

All I thought I could do was to call him. He had mentioned he was going home for a couple of weeks, so at least I wanted to give closure to this.

“So I guess she found out about it, right?” asked I.

“Yes, which have made matters worse.”

“Is she going with you?”

“No way! I need to take care of some family matters and need to be alone to figure things out.”

I took a quick pause before continuing. “I never expected anything from you, you know that.”

“I know,” said he. His tone of voice lowered and I could tell he was looking for a way to end the conversation. “Hmm, I’m leaving tomorrow and need to get everything ready.”

“I understand… I know you get uncomfortable when I’ve said that I care about you and wish only the best for you. Please take care of yourself, and don’t do anything I wouldn’t do.”

I believe Jeff got emotional when he said good-bye. I surely did. I sat there with my face sunk between my hands crying miserably.

I was crying, alone, with no one to give me comfort. I had lost so much already, and now this?

What’s next in line for me?



et cetera