In college, I was the girl he spent his breaks with. He’d take me to parties because he didn’t want to arrive alone. He’d give me rides home that all ended with “Thanks for the ride!” followed by a fist bump. I was the girl he’d call when he was piss ass drunk at his best friend’s birthday party because he knew I would come to the rescue to make sure he got home safe. I was also the girl he woke up at 2 a.m. on a Sunday because he showed up at my house after getting into a huge argument with his then-girlfriend.
“She just doesn’t get me like you do,” he says.
I was the girl he disclosed all his feelings to, the one who listened eagerly and gave sincere advice. I was the girl present in all his inumans and got his friends' humor. I was the girl who really knew and understood him, the one who endured the constant “Sana I could date you na lang! You’re everything I want in a girlfriend! Pero hindi talaga eh.”
I knew I wasn’t soft or pretty, like how most girlfriends are. But I also knew that I was a great girl-space-friend. Sure I rarely talked about my true feelings or wore pretty floral dresses and skirts, but I cared—A LOT. At one point I believed I deserved a Friend Of The Century Award, because I sat through basketball games, attended get-togethers with people I barely knew, and saved his ass so many times in countless occasions. Let me repeat, I was a GREAT girl-space-friend.
But it came to a point when I realized that it was no longer enough.
I couldn’t figure out how I could fill in that tiny space between the words “girl” and friend” and change everything completely. I knew I wanted to put them together to get out of the grey area, but it felt like it was completely one way and I didn’t want to ruin the friendship that ran deep between us.
I know he knew that I was in love with him and I couldn’t live with the fact that there was a possibility—although slim—that he was in love with me, too. I know he knew what he was doing to me wasn’t fair, but he kept me anyway, because he knew he couldn’t do it without me.
I saw him go through every girlfriend and heartbreak.
“We’re a Taylor Swift song waiting to happen,” I’d tell my friends. I patiently listened to him talk about all the girls he was trying to win, when in fact, he didn’t even have to try to win me.
I was the "meantime girl," the one he kept in between relationships, the cool girl he’d call to go out with without having second thoughts, and the one who stayed when I had all the valid reasons to go.