I posted this on my personal Facebook page a few days ago:
Yes Daddy Sean broke my heart before we got together! And it may or may not be as bad as it sounds, depending on how you perceive it. If given a choice (maybe by means of some magic spell), I wouldn’t change a single thing though. I created this post to commemorate Valentine’s Day. Even though we don’t celebrate this day, the date is very special to us. So here’s part one of our little story, depicting my rawest feelings about how it all started.
How We First Met and What Followed After
In 2010, I applied for the adjunct lecturer position in two polytechnics, and got both. Sean had been in one of the schools for a few years back then, and we were in the same department. We started off as acquaintances and eventually started hanging out in a group of friends. We would usually go for late-night beers or coffee during the weekends. Sometimes clubbing too. I always had a good feeling about Sean, so I enjoyed chatting with him. At that point, I was in an unstable relationship with a lousy guy, so no one knew I had a boyfriend.
I eventually broke up with the boyfriend, but not without telling him that I felt a little something for a colleague. I wasn’t sure if I really liked Sean, or simply enjoyed spending time with him. But deep in my heart, I secretly hoped something would happen between us. That was already in late 2011.
But He Did Not Show Any Interest
Look, I wasn’t short of suitors. In fact, the number of suitors I had was really worrying to my conservative parents. I was a little resistant towards exploring more with them, because I knew I wasn’t prepared to commit more than just casually dating them. Sean knew that. In fact, he was often amused by how I was getting hit on while we were hanging out together as friends, as well as stories of my dates. He would even encourage me to pursue something with those he felt were good matches for me.
Sean was always chivalrous and respectful in our interactions. He would send me home after a late night of hanging out, without expecting anything in return. He would even ask for permission to have his arm over my shoulder when taking pictures! And disappointingly, he never showed any interest in me. But this was not what broke my heart. Sure, I was slightly downhearted, but since I wasn’t sure how I felt for this friend, it did not affect me too much then.
Valentine’s Day 2012: What Started It All
I’m not one who believes in celebrating Valentine’s Day, so I had no date on 14 February 2012. On that fateful day, I decided to hang out in the school’s library cafe by myself to do some work. It was already the school term break, so it’d be rather peaceful. While sipping on my iced cappuccino and working on my app, I felt someone’s hands on my shoulders, going “BOO”. I had a fright and the sunglasses on my head fell onto the floor. Guess who that was! Yup it’s a no-brainer. 😛
He asked me why I was in school even though it already was the term break. I told him I wanted some peace and quiet to do work, and the cafe was ideal for me. He asked if I had any plans, and if I didn’t, we could head to a nearby food court for dinner around 6pm. I said I didn’t, so yeah, we could hang out for a bit.
6pm came, and he came over to the cafe to look for me. As we walked out of school, he told me that he had taken a ten-day leave from work. I asked if he had any plans. He said he may go on a holiday by himself. I commented that it sounded so sad, does he need a companion? He said we could plan a trip with another friend; he would text him later to see if he could make it. We decided to go to Taiwan.
He Became My Impromptu Valentine’s Day “Date”
As we walked, I asked him if he realised that it was Valentine’s Day. He said no, but why was I alone? I told him no one asked me out. After a couple of minutes, he suggested since it was a “special day”, we could go to the showflat of his upcoming new place, and then have some beers in a pub in Woodlands, instead of going to a food court.
While we were touring the showflat, an old boyfriend from uni (not the same lousy ex-boyfriend) texted me to ask if he could pick me up for dinner. I replied that I already had plans with a friend, so he called. I reiterated that I could not meet up with him, as I already had plans with a friend. He was unhappy, and our conversation did not end well. Sean overheard the conversation and asked if I needed to meet the person on the phone. I told him I didn’t want to. He told me that we could always have dinner another day, if I had a date with someone else. I told him I wasn’t interested in having dinner with the “guy on the phone”. He said ok, and let him know if I had to leave anytime.
After that, we went to Bojangles at Woodgrove Mall. Yup, I was surprised that there was a pub in Woodlands. It was full house, but luckily we managed to get our table. They had Valentine’s Day specials, and we ordered them. We also ordered a couple of beers to go along. We did a little planning of our trip, and I was excited! I had never been to Taiwan before, and I was thrilled that I would be going with some close friends.
Let’s Troll Our Facebook Friends
Halfway through our conversation, Sean had a cheeky suggestion. Why not troll our Facebook friends? The plan was to take a photo of him and post it on my Facebook. They could draw their own conclusions.
With a crappy phone camera, and a very dark environment, this was what I put up on social media on Valentine’s Day 2012, captioned, “My Valentine! In Woodlands!”:
This caused some commotion with my Facebook wall. Some people speculated that I had a new boyfriend, including my two BFFs.
We had a nice conversation, then took a walk to Woodlands Civic Centre, where we settled for some hot tea at McDonald’s. We chatted on till pretty late, though I cannot recall if he sent me home that night. Anyway, we arranged to meet the next day in school to book our plane tickets.
Post-Valentine’s Day 2012 and the Upcoming Taiwan Trip
Sean informed me that our friend had his own trip planned in the period we were looking at, so we went ahead to book our own tickets. He asked if it was weird for me to travel alone with him. I told him that I was fine, since I knew I could trust him.
Most of our colleagues did not think very much of it, as anyone who knows Sean, knows he’s the dependable type. I know, it seems rare for a man in his thirties to want to travel with a young lady without any intention, but it wasn’t a surprise for someone like Sean. One of my colleagues even told me not to worry about travelling with Sean. He added that a lady could share the same bed with Sean and nothing would happen. Sounded crazy, but yes that’s his nature haha.
We did not plan very much for the trip, except to look for his student in Taiwan. Our intention was to go anywhere as we pleased, and book our accommodation on the go.
Off to Taiwan We Went! And What to Expect in Part Two
Before the trip, I was excited to spend more time with someone I felt so positively about. I must admit though, I still had mixed feelings for him. Knowing he wasn’t interested in me made me all the more confused. It’s just something I could not put my finger on, nor describe with mere words. I guess being good friends with someone you had feelings for is always complicated. I was essentially “sis-zoned“.
Later on, I learnt that his female colleague, someone whom I wasn’t familiar with, learnt about our upcoming trip, and “warned” him about me. She’d told him to be careful about being too close to me, or something bad may happen. Somehow he’d let her words affect him, and this was the start of our “troubles“.
In Part Two, I shall talk about what happened in the trip, and how Sean eventually broke my heart. The 8 months that followed after our Taiwan trip was a rollercoaster ride for the both of us. (Actually me, in particular but who’s keeping track? 😛 Haha)
Wishing everyone a happy 14 February, whether you are celebrating Valentine’s Day or not! 🙂
Some notes: Sean and I always look back and ponder. If he hadn’t taken the route through the library cafe, would we have eventually got together? He uses that route only once in a blue moon. Perhaps if we got together under other circumstances, our Baby J would have been a different Baby J. Talk about the Butterfly Effect ha. Maybe some things were meant to be, and maybe my heart was meant to be broken before we could start our journey together… 🙂