Oh, how I adore thee…

Valentine’s Day is a day for couples. Much like other holidays, it too has become too commercialized. The big businesses are all capitalizing on this holiday but that’s what businesses do. What better way to show your significant other that you truly care about them than to buy them something very expensive. Some people get carried away with Valentine’s Day but majority of us tone it down a little. If you’re single, you have nothing to worry about. If you’re in a relationship, the pressure is on.

I’ve been in a couple of relationships in the past but none of them worked out. I guess that’s kind of obvious since I’m currently single. One relationship failed because of distance and lack of communication while the other one failed due to lack of time. It’s obvious that a lack of anything in a relationship will put it in dark waters. I am no expert when it comes to relationship but I’ve learned my lesson. I didn’t plan on failing in either relationship but I didn’t know enough to keep them alive.

My first relationship was with a girl out in Ottawa. Our parents knew each other since they were back home in Cambodia. Her family came over to visit in the late 80’s. She was the cutest little girl ever and a little goofy as well. At the time she had straight black hair that went down to her shoulders. I took a liking to her right away.

Year goes by and we lost touch. Being little kids we had no idea how to keep in touch. But in the early 90’s my family went to Ottawa because my dad’s band was playing at a party for Cambodian’s New Year. After not having seen her for years, we finally met up and the spark re-ignited. I was in Ottawa for the weekend but I guess that was enough time to get things started.

At the party, I promised her that I would dance with her before the night was over. But unfortunately, that never happened. I don’t quite remember why it didn’t happened. During the car ride home she didn’t say a single word to me so I assumed that she was mad. I wanted to make up for it but I didn’t know how. My family and I were scheduled to leave the following afternoon. By the time I woke up the next morning, her brother told me that she had gone to work. Bad timing caused us not to say our goodbyes before we parted.

Before leaving, I quickly ran to the mall and bought half a dozen roses. I wrote a note saying that I was sorry that I didn’t save her a dance. I left the roses on her pillow with the note stuck inside. I think that, with my kind gesture of sincerity, I captured her heart.

She came to Hamilton to visit a few months later. We didn’t do much because I didn’t have a car so I wasn’t able to take her around town. When I did manage to get the car, we just ended up visiting family and friends in town. It wasn’t very exciting for a tourist to come to another town only to visit people’s houses but I really didn’t have anything planned.

On her first day in Hamilton, I took her down to the harbour front. I spend majority of my summer there because I rollerblade a lot. It kind of sucked that she had to walk there while I was on rollerblade. I felt bad about that but I guess she didn’t mind it too much. It was only a ten minute walk from my house.

We sat at a bench by the beach area and watched the sunset. I was an idiot and made the mistake of sitting too far away. The bench that we were sitting at was one of those picnic benches. I had to get my feet over the seat and I didn’t want to hit her in the process so I gave her some space. But when I went to sit down, I forgot to move closer to her. She told me that she felt very distance from me that day. I don’t know what stopped her from coming closer to me though. Sometimes I can be forgetful and I don’t realize that I should be doing things.

The following night, I took her to the movies. I thought it would be a nice way for us to spend some time alone. As we got into the mall, we ran into some friends from school. They had just gotten back from the Canada’s Wonderland year end trip. The movie wasn’t schedule to start for another thirty minutes so we sat down and hung out with my friends for a bit.

I didn’t realize it at the time but I forgot to introduce her to everyone. I think we were too busy talking that it never crossed my mind. This whole time everyone was talking to each other, she had no idea who she was talking to. All my friends knew that she was my girlfriend but they never got her name.

The week that she was in town went by like nothing and the next thing I knew, it was time for her to leave. I gave her my number so we could stay in touch. Once in a while she would call and then the next time I would call. Long distance charges were pretty expensive for a high schooler to be paying for. I didn’t mind the phone calls because it was nice to hear her voice since I wasn’t going to be seeing her often.

But somewhere down the road, things started to pick up and the phone calls started to slow down. Right after school, I would head to work and I would call her when I was done. I had about twenty minutes to kill because I had to wait for the bus. During those twenty minutes I give her a call. Sometimes I could get her and sometimes I would get the answering machine. Then college started for me and I had even less time. We decided to end the relationship because it didn’t seem like it was going to work out.

Even though we broke up, we’re still good friends and I still keep in touch with her every now and then. We were born a week apart so it’s hard not to remember her birthday. Every time we talk over the phone she always ask when I’ll be visiting her again. I barely have time to see my own friends let alone drive 600km to see her. But when time permits, I plan on visiting her one day.

I think communication plays a major role in a relationship. When things don’t work for you, you have to be able to talk it over. Couples get into heat arguments because one of them doesn’t want to listen. Not a lot of people are willing to listen when they argue. They just want to voice their opinion and forget what the other person wants to say. But you have to remember that communicating means that you’re listening half of the time and talking the other half. If you can’t do that, you’re going to run into a lot of problems down the road.

When I’m at Tim Horton’s and see an elderly couple, I see them talking a lot. Being a young person myself I have yet to understand what is left for them to talk about. They look as if they’re in their late 60’s and I wonder, haven’t they talked about everything already? But being young, my attention span isn’t as good as theirs. I get bored easily with the same topic. The elderly couple has probably been through a lot together. Whether it’s good or bad, I’m sure that they’ve managed to talk it out. So when you’re looking for someone, make sure it’s someone whom you can talk to.

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