01st October, 2015. 3:05pm
Writing 101, Day 19: Feature a guest
As mentioned on Day 11, today is the day to publish your collaboration post! Ideally, you reached out to a candidate and gathered what you needed. Today, publish this post, and don’t forget to link back to your collaborator’s site.
On Day 11, I had a slight panic attack when I read that we’re going to have to interview and/or collaborate with someone. I like writing a lot, and I would interview someone if I was tasked to do it, but that doesn’t mean I enjoy doing it. However, come Thursday of the same week this task came up, I saw a post shared by one of my contacts on Facebook. It was a poem that suddenly made me emotional. I didn’t know why, and it was only until I “interviewed” her about it that I understood why; I can relate.
I guess you could say that my “guest” for today is none other than Pierra Calasanz-Labrador of Magpie of Kawaii. She was actually the first person to actually say that I can write so, in a way, I owe it to her that I’m doing it for a living. I know I’ve mentioned her a few times here in my blog already, but that’s not exactly why I’m mentioning her again. I wanted to feature her here because of her latest masterpiece, “Hollow”, which is really not that “latest” because it was something she wrote a long time ago.
Before I saw it on Facebook, I was kinda on high, but when I read it, I suddenly wanted to cry. It made me sad, and I don’t know why. I tried to forget about it, but sometimes, it’s harder to forget something that touched you. So I sent her a Private Message via Facebook Messenger. It was a long shot, but I told myself to just suck it up and do it because I will never be able to sleep if I didn’t do it. Besides, I knew it would be perfect for this assignment.
As I was thinking about what questions to ask her, the only thing that came to mind was the “feeling” that goes with the poem. I didn’t even ask follow-up questions, because I wanted you guys to (hopefully) be able to get something out of it yourself. So I asked three questions. Fortunately, she agreed to answer them.
The first question I asked was, “what, for you, the poem is all about?” and she told me that “it’s about our relentless search for a ‘soulmate’ and the mistaken notion that another person will fill the gap in our heart, when the truth is, nobody can do that but ourselves.” I’ve ranted quite a few times with you guys about my frustrations toward “finding someone” and being pressured to find one. What I haven’t told you is how sad it makes me feel when people say that to me. Some people say that I “should have a boyfriend already” so that I wouldn’t be so bitchy and whiny. Even I sometimes agree with them. I thought, if I could only find someone, I would be complete. Obviously, I was wrong.
When I asked her what was going through her mind when she wrote the poem, Pierra told me, “when I wrote the poem, I was looking back at my former self. I remember feeling incredibly lonely when I wasn’t with someone, and looking for ‘the one’ who would make me feel complete.” I don’t have a lot of experience when it comes to romantic relationships, but I’m with her in this statement because I’m feeling exactly this right now. I feel lonely, especially after my sister moved out of the country. Yes, being with my brother’s family once a week is great, and I still have Dad with me at home, but it’s just not the same.
I didn’t ask her about the poem’s ‘moral lesson’ but she did include it in her answer. She said, “I learned that it was only when I loved myself first that I would feel whole. That was the lesson I wanted to capture in the poem.” When she told me this, I was like, “she was right. Why am I beating myself up, looking for someone to complete me when I, myself, aren’t?” It was like being slapped with the truth that I never wanted to hear.
Since she shared the poem on a “throwback Thursday”, I asked her about how she felt reading it now compared to the first time she wrote it. She told me, “reading it now, it still makes complete sense. Every time I read it, I think, ‘what took me so long to learn that lesson?’ But I’m glad I did, because when I did finally meet the man I would marry, I could honestly say that I was secure in myself first, I was happy, so that I didn’t rely on him to “complete” me—but rather, we complement each other. And that makes our relationship more pure and unconditional.” I hope that when the time comes for me to meet my “soulmate” I would also be able to say this, because as much as I don’t want to admit it, I know I’m not ready for it. I kept wondering why it hasn’t happened to me yet. I thought, maybe I pass up way too many times and now they’re all taken. Sometimes I think, maybe I really do have a problem. But then, after reading Pierra’s poem, I realized that for me to be able to find “the one”, I should be able to love myself first; Accept my flaws. Only then can I truly open my heart to someone else.