When I crossed my legs and pulled my sleeve down, and when I sniffed and turned up my songs to max volume, I cried. I cried yesterday, today, last week, and I will cry in the next 7 months. 7 more months until I finish school. I don’t want to be paired up with him again. Not him. Never.


Last Monday we had to get into pairs. I looked around the room but I couldn’t find anyone to pair up with. So, of course, I went to the teacher and asked her to pair me up with someone. Turning to see who my partner was, I came across him. He had curly black hair and white teeth that were a bit crooked, and his smile was so sweet. Overall he was so sweet and amazing. I stared into his deep brown eyes and I wondered what it would be like to be liked by him. 


He doesn’t like me. Get that into your head.


If I keep crying over my own thoughts and being trapped in this weird dream, I won’t be able to complete the project Miss assigned to us. I cried when I got home, and after class when I snuck off to the bathroom. I cried on my bathroom floor and on the sofa, letting my tears flow down to my neck and collarbone. Why is it not me? Why doesn’t he like me the same way I like him??


I don’t want to get paired up with him ever again. Not because he doesn’t like me, but because whenever he looks at me and smiles with those perfectly white teeth, I feel ashamed I like him. I know he doesn’t like me back. He once asked me to meet up for dinner on a Monday. What a weirdo. He’s obviously trying to pick on me and make fun of me. 


I cried when I got home that Monday night. My makeup smudged and my face felt hot. We had such a good time but he doesn’t like me. Get that into your head. I wiped my makeup off thinking about his curly hair. He seems so perfect but he doesn’t like me. He asked me to go to dinner with him and the next day he smiled at me and gave me a tiny gift. He is evil for trying to get me to tell him I like him.


Even when I showed him my feelings for a little while, he smiled and his perfectly white teeth showed, and he looked so happy. Why was he happy that I liked him? Was he trying to mock me? That night, when I got home, I sat down and crossed my legs, and started crying. I don’t want to be paired up with him ever again. Not if that means I’ll get my feelings hurt.


Written by Maria Secara and edited by Josephine Sim. Published on 3/9/23. Header image by Felix Yang.

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