It was the last night. It was the last chance.
The rose giving is a yearly university tradition which is the most awaited event of the graduating batch. (Yes, more than the graduation day). It is our version of the Harry Potter’s Leaving Feast in the Great Hall every after school year at Hogwarts, only ours is annually held at the college field. Very much like the Great Hall that simple college field transforms into a party ground with overflowing beer, roasted calf, good music and good company. (The sky is also the ceiling in such occasion which very Harry Potter indeed).
The event is actually symbolic of the culmination of our four to five years in the in the university. It is important for us seniors because it is the time when we get to bond together as a batch, the time when we could say our thanks to our professors, and the time when we could make the brave confession to the first college crush, to the professor crush, to the person who inspired us, and even to the person we were secretly in love with.
All of these with one blue rose.
A week ago I discerned whom to give my blue rose to and the meaning I am putting on it. I didn’t want to go with the usual “first college crush”, I wanted my rose to convey a different message so I thought hard of the person who deserves it most. I went through all the diaries I kept in my college years (I looked through all six of my journals) only to find out that Mateo was the person who had the most impact in my college life.
He was a former classmate of mine in English Literature course during first year. I remember vividly the first time we met and how I liked him that very moment. That liking turned into loathing because of his proud disposition and strong demeanor which became love in the end.
I wanted to give my rose to him because even though he was not my first college crush (it was Kenn) he was my first love. And although the feeling was not mutual, I believe he deserves it for he is the first man I genuinely loved outside my family and friends. What I had for him was more than just a feeling, I am certain about it. But I was and still am one of the many girls who are not the main character in his story. So what I did was love him from a distance.
Hence, I told myself I would muster all the strength I could possibly get from the universe to finally make that brave confession to the guy I loved so much in the past four years. Besides, what is there to lose anyway? Yes it would be embarrassing but then it could be the last time we will be seeing each other so why not take the risk?
That night (March 26, 2014), I texted him and called him twice but all of those were not answered. I persisted on calling him even though the line got busy after my first two calls, I even used my friends’ phones just in case he blocked my number only to find out that the line could not be reached. I searched him in the crowd going rounds at the field not just twice but thrice. With alcohol induced self-esteem I even called his friend Makki to ask if he knew where Mateo could be. Unfortunately he did not know either.
I did not want to keep the rose until graduation day and give it to him so I decided to give it to Kevin who is my male best friend in college. At first he was hesitant in accepting the rose for he knew it was not meant for him but because I insisted he took it anyway.
It was sad that I was not able to give it to the man I love. But atleast I put effort in looking for him, in reaching out. I did what I could do at that moment to find him. The circumstances might have been perfect— the person, the occasion, the intention— except he was not present. Well that is life, at least I can say I tried only it was not successful.