A privilege indeed

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By Regina May Cajucom

Serendipity Couch

Wednesday, June 11, 2014


IF THERE is anything my eldest daughter and I seriously bond over, it is our love of reading, our fascination for fictional dudes: the romantic, smart, articulate and simply amazing leading men featured in YA novels and our penchant for sigh-inducing, heart-shattering awww… quotes from books we have both read (or are reading).

When Kayla finished reading The Fault in our Stars (John Green, 2012), she came knocking at our bedroom door a little late at night, sat in our bed, and just cried. I was quite shocked but not scared (I have a feeling if she did get my emo genes she would not cry THAT openly when it involves a FACTUAL – as opposed to fictional – guy). I could only laugh at her cuteness, and tell her it’s just a book. Fast-forward some months later when I finally got hold of the book (technically, of my kindle Kianne containing the book). At first I was just relaxed reading it, finding it like those giddy YA novels I am so fond of, until I reached the sickening Augustus Waters line:
"I lit up like a Christmas tree."

And teardrops just started a-falling. I found myself knocking at our daughters’ bedroom, sitting in their bed and throwing Kianne (sorry baby) at Kayla who was then surfing the net, while crying. She couldn’t help but laugh, got the kindle and switched it on, then blurted out: “Ma, you’re just done 90%!” Yup, that’s me, ever the crybaby-fangurl-mom.

So there, I should have been forewarned. I should have learned from that experience to just say “no” when the movie adaptation hits the theaters. Kayla asked permission to see it with her friends, and although Hubby was offering to accompany me I was quite hesitant to let him see the waterwork-effects that is his wifey. So I begged off, resigned to the fact that I would just watch it in the comfort and privacy of our bedroom, where a blanket (!) is ever-ready to absorb the tears.

But as fate would have it, something went kaput in Kayla’s movie date with friends, and next thing I knew I was in a long queue, one of the few “senior citizens” at SM Cinema 4, an hour before the second screening on the first day.

“That’s the thing about pain. It demands to be felt.”

And so I started a movie-adaptation-roller-coaster-ride that only goes down. (Ha!) Not even halfway through the movie, specifically during the swing scene: “I’m a grenade and at some point I’m going to blow up and I would like to minimize the casualties, okay?” – waterworks. Not just some misty-eyed scenario, but, waterworks. Even when there were funny scenes involving Isaac? Waterworks. The chic dinner in Amsterdam that’s supposed to be teener-giddy? Waterworks. Like a dam.
I could have been the answer to the El Niño crisis at the time. I can hear Kayla whimpering beside me, and at one point she suddenly grabbed my hanky to pacify her uncontrollable tearducts. Awww…we would have absolutely no need for a DNA test.

The movie experience was tiring, but liberating. I actually haven't cried like that in so many months.

"It was a privilege to have my heart broken by you”, John Green, and oh-so-cute Ansel 'Augustus Waters' Elgort.

(serendipity.couch@gmail.com/ www.serendipitycouch.com)

Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on June 12, 2014.

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