A Love Like No Other
They grew up together in the same neighborhood. Though on different streets, it was the familiar path of rough roads they knew very well as children. He was tall and fairskinned, a typical boy who would love to play yet somehow a bit shy, prefers to be quiet and often than not, guarded his ways.
She was loquacious, a blabber, very mischievous yet never dishonest and loves to climb fences, fruit bearing trees, rooftops and anything of height that caught her fancy. Oh! How she picks her fights. Her choice.
They both went to the same school. Elementary or grade school was never boring to her. It was her respite from home, as staying within the confines of the four walls in her room made her suffer more than her recent bout with chicken pox.
Ric as he was called, had admired that silly girl Ruth, a typical girl who loves to run races, laugh until her tummy aches, and shout the loudest whenever her team won. He would admire her from afar.
Ruth never knew how Ric felt about her. She was so preoccupied of playing, giggling on recess with girlfriends and so taken up with beautiful stationaries given to her by classmates especially those perfume scented ones with flower prints.
Days turned into weeks, weeks into months, months into years. She noticed him standing in the aisle.. just standing there looking at her direction but shrugged it off as "maybe not me".. there were other girls with her, she muttered. One time, Ruth was taken aback as she noticed Ric standing from her left, near the desk where she was seated. She intended to say "hi," yet was startled that Ric was not looking at her but his attention was on the other girls starting conversation with him.
Those were the two (2) occasions she remembered of him until they separated ways right after graduation from gradeschool. Both went on their own, to each respective dreams of future careers they had planned and imagined.. from high school to earning a college degree.
Graduate School Jitters
It was in the first semester of Graduate School, Ruth registered for a course, Masters in Managerial Accounting as she intend to equip herself for a corporate job offer in her chosen field. It was sudden that on that same year, she met the man who stimulated her intellectually. Adventurous as she was, when the man proposed and ask her to get married, nonchalantly, she agreed.
Alas, after sometime, she realised how her short sightedness and lack of wisdom to easily say "yes" without really getting to know the man so well, made her regret the idea of getting married.
It pained her to spend sleepless nights thinking of him "what's keeping him from coming home early" or "who's he with" and "what he's done?"
She became demanding, unreasonable, restless which often ended in exhausting arguments and verbal abuse. Then one day, just like coming out of a bad dream, her nightmare was over. Headstrong as she was, her two kids in tow, she left him.
This time she did not regret her decision to leave. She kept and honor her status as a married woman. Not for anything else, nor for the man she once cared for, but for her values and beliefs to stay pure.
Ruth was a very independent woman, in a sense, she never clung or felt she needed to be in a relationship or just to be with someone. Men and women alike admired her, yet, not her being stoic, unemotional, or detached. She knew that. Portraying that kind of personality was cruel. Yet, it was her defense.
To those few friends who truly cared for her, loved her more as they knew her heart. Her character was admirable. She was devoted and sincere.
Longings and Lamentation
Bitterly she wept at night, tears were upon her cheeks. "See, O Lord, how distressed I am!" In her sorrow, Ruth turned to her faith in God. Prayer became her fortress. It eventually became her hiding place.
Who would know her many moments of torments, like hell. Being alone, longing to love and be loved, yet too scarred and disgraced by her past, bills piling up, and fear of the future only in her aloness, she could hope for. More than anything, the anxiety of raising her two (2) kids all by herself and how much she loved them. They were her prized jewels.
She held on despite her lamentations, she was strengthened by her spiritual beliefs and faith in her God.
She was 27. Smart and attractive. Ripe for the picking to those who would think on taking advantage of her vulnerability.
Even Her Tears Won't Describe the Pain
Ric, so determined to find his way to his dreams and passion, entered the world of films, play, and directing. Nevertheless, dedicated to work and study so hard, earned a college degree.
It was during these times, a familiar image of someone he knew from long ago appeared from the audiece of a play he was directing. Or so he thought. It was the face of a long lost childhood love. "Was that Ruth?"
After that moment too sudden, he forgot about her.
He glided from his love for the theater, film and directing to getting himself wanting more from his chosen career. An opportunity to go abroad was imminent. Migration at that time was a privilege. When you dream about success, you work for it!
The Corporate Ladder
Ever eager, full of enthusiasm and on fire to dutifully work hard for all that matters, Ruth was intense and fervid to climb the corporate ladder. Her children were always priority. They take precedence over all other concerns in obtaining Ruth's special attention. She became ruthless at work where work ethics are concerned.
After several fruitful years, she became "the little president" of the company. When it came to decision making on finances and operations, she would take over on management meetings even when the CEO and President was around. She felt always at home where her work was. The board was pleased. She was sent to travel abroad on every event and financial highlights that required her expertise.
Despite all the recognition given her, Ruth remained unfriendly and cold to men she despised. She detest, abhors men who lies. To Ruth, it would be better if a man tells the worst truth, instead of his best lie.
Seasons came and went. Many events both corporate and family related, passed like the whiff of wind. Ruth was first sent to Hongkong during the Asian-Distributor's meeting that took place at Causeway Bay. She took part in the financial highlights during the event, hit her mark, and made her presence felt.
Next trip was in Raffles City, Singapore. Ruth was not an engineer, but by heart she knew the process of the first POS machines or Point of Sale. Whether you manage a stand alone or multiple stores on different geographical location it interfaces with your front and back office, the automated system generating business information, its efficiency boosting profit and profit margins.
Management was happy on the results of their KPI's or Key Performance Indicators and Metrics used how the company was effectively achieving. The board decided to send Ruth to the US where their central office was based. She headed for Lowell, Boston, MA.
Before the official trip to Boston, the company gave her an itinerary that will also spoil her for at least two (2) weeks of R&R or rest and recreation en route to Honolulu, Hawaii. Ruth stayed at The Hyatt Regency across Waikiki Beach.
She usurp this one of a kind, once in a lifetime privilege, made available to her.
Of Hopes and Dreams
Many unforeseen blessings came to Ric. First was getting established in the country where he migrated, though not easy to live in a foreign land it became home to him as decades already came one after the other. It was also during these times that he found that special someone he wanted to spend his life with. He raised his family with the love and devotion a good husband and father of two (2) must be.
Then he never thought of Ruth anymore.
The Test of Time
In the summer of Ruth's 40th birthday, she felt a strong sense of grief and unexplained agony, but not for lost love she set free during her turbulent marriage. It was for a very rare sentiment and perception of pure, genuine, honest, almost perfectly divine kind of love. An emotion too strong it pained her and made her cry. It was all powerful. Almost sacred. Longing for something she felt was strange, or for someone she never even knew existed.
She ran and turned into her hiding place_ fervent prayer!
Little did she knew, God's purposes shall prevail.
One night, Ruth watched a rerun of the classic "Fiddler on the Roof." How it moved her. She thought of her kids, now full grown adults and creating their own world. She sighed a very deep sigh, sobbing while both counting her blessings and how God the Almighty took care of her, keeping her pure for whoever that someone might be, and yet asking God "why have you deprived me of the one true love I so long sought for?" "Where is he?" "Who is he?"
God has planted the seed of love a long time ago in their childhood, it was impossible for them to even thought of each other considering their odd circumstances. Yet, miracles do happen.
Ric found her. He saw Ruth in one of the group pages on social media. Instantly, old, familiar feelings of profound affection flowed back in his heart and memory. The rush of emotion on him was overwhelming. It engulfed his being.
It took time to befriend her once more. She was his first love.
With much faith in God, both of them vowed to cherish their friendship, to honor and guard their love most revered and sanctified.