| We're alive. We are loved. And we are worth it. |

"It's unfair. Why are there people like them?" 

I asked sadly. Like a little girl who witnessed an unamusing prank for the first time.

I could hear him breathing on the other end of the line, just listening. I could hear his heart break too, as much as mine.


I remember talking about prince charmings and happy ever afters in my journal when I was young. My teacher would remark time and again about my optimism, saying that real life is far different from how I would wish to see it---that love is far more complicated than frogs and beasts turning into our dream princes. Far less magical than fairy godmothers and sewing mice.

But I loved happy endings. And I was a dreamer.

"You are an overly optimistic girl. I fear your optimism will break your heart someday."


It did. It broke my heart over and over. Yet each time, I tried to pick up the pieces over and over too--in constant hopes of putting them back together, every time an apology is uttered....until finally, my heart shattered into the tiniest, indistinguishable pieces.


Confused. I asked again, "Why?"

Earl spoke calmly. He did not curse. He did not speak of anything ill about it at all. He simply said: 

"To make us stronger persons."

I cried again. A Les Miserables-kind of cry. Really.

It felt like God was talking through him--inspiring me to forgive again and again, and just let go. To never hold any grudge, and just pray.


I asked him again, "Why?"

"Why didn't you hate me for leaving you? Why don't you hate him?"


"Because I love you."

He added, " Being angry, challenging anyone to a fight, and cursing, will not do anyone good, love. If there is anything my Dad taught me, it is to always be kind and respectful to anyone. That means not doing anything that you will regret, and will damage the good character your parents raised you up with."

I smiled and said a silent prayer. I was humbled.

At that moment, I was convinced that he is one of the most beautiful and loving souls God placed in my life. The person I prayed for during the most painful night of my life.

There were so many questions in my head---"Why didn't you look for someone else?,"Why did you wait?"

And as if hushing a little girl who talks too much, he just looked at me sincerely and said:

"I promised a girl a love that will last forever."

I held my breath. He took my hand ("It still fits," he said), held me inside his embrace, and began singing our song...

I cried. Tears of joy this time.

I apologized again, but felt like he did not need it anymore. I thanked him for being the man that he is.


I shared with him a song from Jason Mraz' (one of our favorite artists) new album, telling him that I did all these three things.

There are three things I do when my life falls apart:

Number 1: I cry my eyes out and dry up my heart. Not until I do this will my new life start.

Number 2: I close both my eyes, and say my thank you's for each and every moment I'm alive. I go where I know the love is, and let it fill me up inside. Gathering new strength from sorrow. I'm glad to feel alive.

Number 3: I pause, I take a breath, and bow, and let the chapter end. I design my future bright not by where my life has been. 

And I try, try, try, try.....try again. 

Yes. Things are, indeed, looking up. I know above the clouds the sun is shining.

Love is still the answer I'm relying on.


I still believe in happy ever afters. And in a love that lasts forever.  I know now that no heartbreak can make me disbelieve it.

There is no easy way to it, but I know it IS there. God's story is worth hoping for, waiting for, taking the long, often difficult, journey for.

And as long as Love and God are with us, our patchwork hearts will only love..and love...and love. 

It is so because it knows no other thing to do. LOVE will always be the answer to every question, every fear, every hurt, every pain, every struggle, every dream, and every new beginning.




Coming home.

SERVE LIFE FORWARD: Travel meaningfully, Live joyfully.