Love Wins: 10 Years Strong

Written by: Lifestyle Network/Saturday, Jun 25, 2016 02:10 PM

Updated on June 7, 2017

Most people don’t expect a serious relationship to bud from a random encounter in the bar. You have a few drinks with the person, flirt a little, exchange numbers, and sometimes it ends at that. Herbs Samonte certainly thought that that would be the case with Frank Pelpinosas, who was charming and handsome with a killer pick-up line (he was wearing a shirt that said “Danger: Hot!” and suggested that Herbs should put it on instead). But Fate stepped in and decided to pull a fast one. After just two weeks of dating they became a couple. 

Creative Content Manager Herbs described Frank as his complete opposite: logical, rational, and straightforward. He had lofty ambitions and knew exactly what he wanted, whereas Herbs was more spontaneous and spur-of-the-moment, still trying to feel his way through life. In addition, they had a nine-year age gap between them. You’d think that all these differences would lead to the speedy demise of their relationship, but as the saying goes, opposites attract. They complemented each other like salt and pepper, sand and sea, sun and moon. Humor also played a huge part in their relationship - they knew how to make each other laugh. 

Fast forward to nearly ten years later and they’re still a couple, going as strong as ever, though they may now be continents apart.

“Pinaghiwalay kami ng tadhana (we were separated by Destiny),” Herbs said of their long-distance status. It’s been a year since Frank left for Boston after accepting a new position at work. Both new to LDR, they admit finding it difficult to get used to the set-up. “We were already live-in for more than eight years…the habit is there; you’re used to being around each other. It’s difficult to have that taken away,” he said in Taglish.

To overcome the usual challenges of LDR, Herbs said that they made it a point to talk every day. “It’s a good thing we talk via FaceTime or Facebook. It helps in the coping process,” he said. “We plan our future together…that’s good because you have something to look forward to everyday. We also don’t remove the playfulness; we’re both makulit. He makes me laugh, I make him laugh. I think that humor plays a vital part in every relationship, more than the physical.

He added: “It’s important also that your friends are well-involved, so we have a support group that helps us.”

When asked about what he missed most about Frank, Herbs’ face broke into a wide smile as he talked about their weekend road trips. “We would go out every weekend. We both look forward to it - Monday to Friday is for work, and weekends are for us.” Apart from the weekend getaways, it was the small things Herbs really missed. “He is the one that pacifies me, especially when I’m going through something. He also really makes me laugh.”

And what’s he looking forward to with Frank? "Plans are after getting his green card, we will get married and I will be moving there, but another option is for him to come home to the Philippines after five years. We'll see," says Herbs. 

Every kind of love is a gift, but there is a certain joy in stumbling upon one that is unconventional, unlikely, and unexpected, like that of Herbs and Franks’. Opposites though they were, they found comfort in each other’s differences and learned to compromise so as to cultivate their relationship and make it work despite the distance. Herbs tied it all up perfectly as he recalled something they would often say - a kind of vow and assurance to each other: “I am his first and he is my last.”

*Photos courtesy of Herbs Samonte and Earvin Feliciano


Read Herbs' Advice for a Long-lasting Relationship ->


 

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