I Had A Deep Crush On A Girl Yet I’ve Never Been Gay

This singular experience remains as one of the most unexpected happenings in my life that defies explanation. Because if there was anything in me that would remain unquestionable, it could only be my delicate heart that embodies hard-core femininity.

lesbianIt was in an all-girl Catholic convent school where I spent my secondary education, which meant the presence of lesbians was a given – albeit there had been only a few in our school at the time. To spice things up due to our drab existence of not having boys around, some girls would even fake their sexuality and couple up with another girl just to “be different” or be talked about, or to experience what it’s like. Other than my innocent curiosity on how genuine girl to girl romantic unions express their ardent feelings for each other, I wasn’t interested. I’ve gotten along well with members of the third sex my whole life –they’re interesting and fun to hang around with – yet I’ve unequivocally preferred swooning for the virile gender.

In high school, the tougher your moniker sounds, the cooler and more popular you get. My friends playfully jumbled the letters of my name and had thought of calling me “Majo” or “Jomar” – until we finally settled with the nickname “Ojie.”

I was in third-year high school. She was called Tesong. Short for her full name Theresa Ong (Not to worry, thousands and thousands here possess such name).

It all began when the two of us played lovers in a classroom theatrical project. A mini-movie. Rehearsals and the actual shooting of the drama required her and me looking deeply in each others’ eyes, doing some sundry sweet motions – minus the usual intimate contact. Kissing not included, thank God.

The girl is not gay. But for unknowable reasons, her moves are not ultra feminine. That could explain why she played the Romeo, and I, the Juliet in the love drama. She has got masculine aura. Or at least that was what I had come to perceive. I did feel it – although I couldn’t explain it. No, it was not sexual at all. I was only 14 years of age. I wouldn’t even conceive of touching lips with her. Nor hold her hand. Unimaginable.

She had shoulder-length shiny hair she was always fond of smoothing with her hairbrush each break-time. An average-looking girl – who was nice and smart – with a complexion slightly darker than mine, she was well-liked by everyone, too. What I found most compelling about her was her gaze. Her somewhat chinky eyes – caused by her Chinese descent – had this ability to pierce through the very insides of one’s soul. My soul, for that matter. She could give an intense look that would go right through my heart and my core making me ask myself in the aftermath, “What was that?”

Repeated photo shoots to promote our minuscule movie served as the germination and perpetuation of my, er, secret sensations. From then on, I got tongue-tied whenever she’d come near me, made all the more convoluted by my pounding heartbeat. I kept on thinking, “No, no. This can’t be possible.” I possess too much of an effeminate heart to fall for my kind. Proof of which: my lengthy list of male crushes – photos of guys, both local and international, with killer looks and handsome faces that graced the cover of my writing notebooks and bedroom walls.

I couldn’t tell if she sensed how I felt about her. How could I let her know – or embrace what I’d been feeling when I was infallible of the fact I am so not gay? It became a difficult period instead because my deep infatuation for her was bringing me external discomfort and slight inner mayhem. Nonetheless, there was no uncertainty as to the young lady chromosomes that run through my body. I kept my silence without telling a soul at school and at home.

My uneasiness lasted for the whole school year. When I reached my 4th year, we weren’t classmates anymore. How I thanked the heavens above.

There are things in life we just can’t explain.

I met her accidentally inside a restaurant several years after our high school graduation. We were already in our early 20s. I was with a boyfriend then and she was about to have lunch with a bunch of her male colleagues. Still possessing of that shiny smooth hair and penetrating gaze, she seemed to have changed. Like she became more feminine. She even looked quite demure and giddy in the company of her debonair workmates. She truly was a girl after all. We had a little talk – then said goodbye. It had been my total closure. And I was glad.



High school Days Gone By

In keeping with my mission to put on record some of my life events here in hopes that someday my son would want to know what her mother was like in her younger years, I’ve decided to push through with this post about my early teenage life, specifically my high school days in an all-girl Catholic school. Nothing spectacular took place during that period. I was just your average student, girl next door type. I never kept a diary so I’ll just state some facts I still remember from that era randomly.

Me in the red circle. Funny that we never got the chance to use the swimming pool in my four years there.

Things I loved: Beautiful, well-kept gardens (which we weren’t allowed to walk into), Art class, kind and amiable teachers, Music class, Drama club, our well-stocked library, lionhearted girls, colorful posters of teen heartthrobs like Shaun Cassidy, Parker Stevenson, etc., Mills & Boon love story pocketbooks, P.E. activities.

Things I Hated: writing term papers, girl to girl cattiness, terror teachers, daily morning flag ceremony, everyday mass, Bible study, loud motor-mouthed classmates who simply crave attention.

– I sometimes “cut classes” because the class was too boring. I’d run to the nearest huge grocery store beside our school and spend an hour or two there. I can’t remember now how I was able to do that despite the security guards stationed at the front gates.

– I was guilty of daydreaming for hundreds of hours in total during classes where the teacher would discuss lessons that were of no interest to me. Subjects in particular: Religion, Chemistry, Statistics, Trigonometry.

– I enjoyed my Physical Education activities and did well at track & field and basketball. Ditto for our C.A.T. activities that had us marching like soldiers dressed in dark green polos and pants.

– It still baffles me why we had to call our every teacher “Miss,” not mam or madam.

– I’d wake up very early to be able to attend the 5:30 a.m. mass intended for the nuns of our school. Their soulful singing of hymns had been a divine way to start my day. Which also meant I often attended mass twice a day. The other one was the compulsory 11 am mass before lunchtime. With that in mind, I sometimes wonder why I didn’t join the nunnery.

– Like most exclusive for girls’ schools, girl to girl relationship had been prevalent. I remember having witnessed a “couple” of schoolmates who French kissed in full view of the class. They did it proudly probably thinking it was a sweet thing to do. I thought it was  “Yucky.” I mean, couldn’t have they done it somewhere more private? I never imagined myself kissing a girl. How is that different from kissing myself in the mirror? Or maybe I just liked boys a lot better. Did I ever wonder what these young female “lovers” do behind closed doors? You bet I did. I didn’t have much idea at that time. But honestly, I wasn’t that interested.

– By the way, I only got to know about the birds and the bees when I reached the end of my freshman year. A classmate pal asked me if I knew how girls get pregnant. My answer: when a boy put his arm around her. (That’s what my mother told me and I believed her!) So my friend laughed at me hysterically and told all our other friends about my naivety. I can’t remember who actually enlightened me with the facts. After learning the truth though, I felt sorry for all my boy playmates whom I kicked hard earlier when they playfully tried to put their arms around me.

– My friends were fond of talking with to me because I wasn’t much of a talker and would just listen to them. Besides, whenever something they said really tickled my funny bone, I’d giggle non-stop.

– Some girls could be silly funny. “Your hair looks shiny and smooth. Do you use any special type of oil for it?” was my casual question to a classmate one day. “Yeah, cooking oil.” was her deadpan answer. Crazy conversation like that. Joke stories about nuns and priests had been passed around a lot too. But I’ll stop right here as my son is a lot more religious than me.

– I’ve got to admit boys are a hundred times funnier than girls though. My brother is probably one of the funniest people in the world. I would often laugh myself to tears with his ad-libs. It puzzles me where he could have gotten his brand of humor as both my parents aren’t the hilarious kind.

– Trying out for the Glee club, I passed the vocal and dance auditions held by the music teachers, only to be eliminated days after by the “cool girls” (longtime members) who acted as the final judges. I was utterly disappointed. They probably thought I wasn’t fashionable or popular enough to become part of their club.

– I wrote a few cheesy poems that got published in our school paper. My real purpose then was to see my name in print. That’s all. On the whole, it made me proud and happy.

– The library was my most favorite place inside the school. I wish I could say I spent time reading the classics there. I didn’t. Instead, when I dropped by after class, I’d start pulling out colorful books on geography and leafed through breathtaking shots of skies and sceneries.

– I envied those girls who could talk back to the nuns and terror teachers. We called them “girls with balls.”

– I didn’t like “interaction” parties arranged by my schoolmates. Some of the girls acted weird around boys.

– During sophomore year, a boy who was my best friend’s brother came to like me but I couldn’t like him because he wasn’t movie star handsome. (Yes, I was that shallow. I hate myself now) Without my knowledge, he tried to do my term paper by actually handwriting it. Total: 50 beautifully handwritten pages. There was no computer yet and I believe the boy didn’t have a typewriter then. I returned the papers to him because I had already started typing mine. Thinking about it now, that had been really nice of him. Now you have an idea why I was sentenced by the heavens to eternal singlehood on earth. I was a bad girl. 🙂

I was a junior student during my elder sister’s highschool graduation.(me on the right)