It has finally happened. It being that one thing I have been praying for has materialized.
Last night, I chanced upon someone who I have not seen nor heard of since that god-awful night exactly three years and nine months ago. I know it was God’s doing, and His timing was perfect. My family and I just finished late dinner, waiting for the bill, when her father walked right into the same restaurant we were in. Of course I still recognized him because it wasn’t the first time since; I chanced upon him twice in different occasions, but I never told anyone about it.
I must confess that when she emerged from the driver’s seat of their SUV, our eyes locked. I saw her mouth my name, and I wasn’t sure what to think of it. Dead air filled our table; everyone appeared to have stopped breathing like I did. Finally, she entered the restaurant, and started to walk towards our table. In that very instant, I wished the ground would swallow me up.
This time she said my name audibly, and I heard it. All of us did. When I turned around to face her, she was smiling. She asked how my Mom was, how my family has been. She noticed how much my brothers have grown.
For a second, I may have tuned out from what she was saying, thinking she looked exactly as I remember her. She extended her hand to congratulate me on my recently concluded wedding. I didn’t ask how she knew; it didn’t matter. She broke away from our handshake, embarrassed by her clammy palms. Some things haven’t changed at all.
While we’re on the subject, I asked her if she’s still in a relationship with her long-time boyfriend. She confirmed, and I’m glad to know. She says they have not talked about marriage yet. Our ‘small talk’ was good while it lasted. Just before she retreats from our table, she says:
Okay naman kami. Okay na kami. Ikaw lang naman eh… (We’re okay. We’re okay now. It’s just you who…)
I thought I was the only one to notice how her face changed as she lets her voice trail off. If it weren’t pain and regret, I don’t know what were. I approached her for the last time as we leave the premises, and asked her to send my regards to the other girls.
It was awkward, but not strained. I think that was a good thing. I can’t say that it was an unfortunate encounter; unexpected was more fitting. Funny how I have prayed for this, but uncertain of the kind of reception I will experience. All this time I thought I will feel slighted when I see them upfront, but instead I was approached differently. I thought she was genuine and sincere. My parents thought so, too. My Dad emphasized the fact that such chance meeting seems inevitable since we all live in the same city.
There are plenty of questions going on in my head right now. I know she cannot speak on behalf of the other girls, but it seems like we’re not so far from closure/possible reconciliation. With that being said, I guess all there’s left to do now is pray, and allow God’s will to prevail.
If anyone of you is reading this right now, know that I wish you well.