How many have you loved before me?

Have you ever wondered how many your current boyfriend/girlfriend has loved before you?

Who I loved was a boy from high school. I wasn’t exactly close to him, but with some superficial facts and a few interactions over a semseter, you know, like most girls fantasizing over a boy they barely know, I filled in the blanks like a fairy tale author.

What I loved was an old friend, but he was much more than just a friend. We met, kept in touch through the years after.  Personality, humor, taste, it was all there. He and I were almost perfect. The only thing that wasn’t perfect was our timing. We can never seem to be together at the same place at the same time. What we loved about each other was never enough to compensate the distance.

When I loved was my first boyfriend in college. The feeling of young love is unique and impossible to replace or replicate because we can only be that age once. It was a time of innocence, discovery, and adventure. We shared these three elements together in things like out first kiss, late night sneaking out, and matinee movies, all of which now have become a nostalgic love, preserved in a time neither of us can touch, but know was there. Even though we were just kids, there’s not a doubt in my mind that when we were there, we were in love.

Where I loved was the boy I met in Cebu. I never intended to stay there that long. It was just a six-week internship before graduating, but it all changed when I met him. Maybe it was my desire to be on my own or prove something to everyone back at home, but he helped me accomplish it over there with a relationship reflective of the city we were in, an new energy, new experiences, that really pushed me to mature more than anyone or anywhere else. When people ask what city I love the most, I say Cebu. The city where I lived the most.

Why I loved was a close friend of mine who I lost. He told me that it wasn’t because he didn’t love me, but that he wasn’t ready to the way that I loved him. He never got to feel the same way I always felt about him, and when he was gone, that was what stuck with me most, teaching me to see that not everyone can love you the way that you wanted – and needed to be loved. But he had such a big heart, and he made me understand why. Why, sometimes, love isn’t just the way we plan it to be. It will just happen.

You are the sixth.

You’re none of them because you’re all of them. You are who I love; the boy on the pedestal, the fantasy, the make-believe things that are actually true. You are what I love; the depth, the inside jokes, the best friend. You are when I love; a new history is being started with you. We are the young lovers our older selves will someday reminisce about. You are where I love: because I’d go anywhere, just to be with you. You are why I love: because before you, I didn’t truly understand what I was looking for. Now that we found each other, you’ve given my past and future meaning. You are the sixth. You are the last.

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