I’ve got so many queries asking “what happened to Brandon?” through my mails so I thought it’s seemed incomplete not to tell the story from the start, just so you get my side of the story.
So I mentioned that Brandon and I were in an inter-faith relationship, and we were also interracial couples. He was of English-Dutch background.
Our relationship was no ordinary relationship from the start. We met at a mutual friends housewarming party and he straight up hitting on me since day 1. I turned his flirt down as I got a boyfriend and he backed off. He then got my number and proceed to text me, but I delayed the response to him until two years later when I officially broke up and when he was already away. Surprisingly, he made a trip halfworld away to see me just to ask me if he ‘stand a chance’ this time around. I mean, he travelled down under just to tell me that? who am I not to give him the chance he deserved?
So then we dated. We’ve always been living worlds apart but we always spent time for each other every two months somewhere for a holiday, and we literally travel the world together. And since we mostly spent time apart, I have a very high insecurity towards myself and the relationship we had so I always said to Brandon “If one day you ever feel like not doing this anymore, if you’re bored with me and don’t love me anymore, just say it to my face. I will be fine. I’d rather hear it from you than knowing it from someone else. And I’ll be the same.”. Which he always reply “What are you talking about.”.
I mean I was being very clear about it, and I was trying to be realistic. First of all it won’t be easy to do and if anyone of us decided to gave up on it, just let the other party knows so we both won’t be holding on to something that is not even there anymore. Right?
Brandon was an introverted person, he didn’t socialize much and had a very limited people in his life that he would consider as friends. Meanwhile I was the complete opposite. He got a best friend that he knew since he was little and introduced her to me through facetime at first. Two years later we were in the Netherlands for her wedding.
I love the Netherlands, it’s a small beautiful country, and for the love of tulips and cheese I would be very happy to retire there, if not in New Zealand.
Lieke and Brandon were neighbors since they were baby in Alkmaar. Lieke was two years older than Brandon and they basically grew up together.
I remember we were sitting at a café when Brandon and Daan (Lieke’s fiancé) standing in line to order some coffee and bites for us, Lieke said to me “Astrid, I’m glad we finally get to meet in person here and let me tell you something, Brandon never talk about a girl to me or even bring a girl around here in Alkmaar let alone introduced her to me he as his girlfriend. You are the first, and I think he is serious about you. I could feel it! The wedding bells might ring for me this time, but it could be yours next and I’m so excited.”
I was happy and terrified at the same time, I mean… seriously? but then again why would Lieke lied? Brandon did treat me so well since the beginning, but it was too soon to tell anything so I was just smiled.
Brandon’s maternal family was from Alkmaar while his father and paternal family was from Dorset, England. Brandon lost his mom when he was in 15 because of cancer and his Dad has been remarried since and moved back to England. But Brandon was so close to his Oma in Alkmaar so he was staying at hers until he finished high school.
We shared a lot of similarities and we were so clicked. And the fact that we both had no mom due to illnesses made us so much closer. I met his maternal family and they were very warm and welcoming.
Lieke and Daan went to Cape Verde for their honeymoon and little did I know, Brandon and I were gonna be there at the same time. So we spent couple days together in a double date honeymoon/vacation form. Which was odd at first but it was fun.
Brandon was 5 years older than me, and he told me the reason why we matched so well is because I am way more matured than my age so I could balanced him.
When I finished my bachelor degree he wanted me to take my post graduate degree in Europe so that we could be together. I was hesitant as my Dad vowed not to pay my post graduate, so that was a problem. How could I afford it? And Brandon didn’t care how I was gonna do that, he only wanted me to be there. Back then I didn’t know I was getting some funds and assets from my (late) mom that I could use for education as soon as I turned 25.
And in my head, I was never gonna moved anywhere for a guy, unless the guy was my husband. Like if I were moving to the Netherlands or England it would be mainly for my education, not for a romance. I set my priority straight.
Dad been working with foreigners for over 20 years, but he wasn’t really sure if he would let his daughters date one, let alone marrying one. Not to be racist but he got a bad idea of white guy dating asian girl.
I wanted him to meet Dad and get to know each other. I wanted my Dad to like Brandon as much as I liked him.. But things were hard.
Approaching 3 years of relationship Brandon told me he was tired of living halfworlds away from me. He loves the travel the world together part, but the separation part annoys him so much.
He then came up with the idea to marry me.. He didn’t really ask “Will you marry me?” stuff, because he said he knew the answer. He actually said “I’m marrying you in Christchurch in 8 months, I’m gonna bring Oma, and you’re gonna bring your Dad and your sister. I’m moving to London for a new job and I’ve calculated everything, and I could afford the wedding you want in 8 months. So let’s start to prepare. I know religion stuff will be a problem, but I need you to find out what we could do to make it work.”
So I didn’t really know if I could say I was being proposed, because I wasn’t really being asked, I was being ordered, right? But I loved him so much so I did what he asked me to. We both think Indonesia would be an easier place for him to convert because my Dad was there. Then I researched about the mosque and imam that could convert him there and all legal paper we needed to bring to New Zealand prior to the wedding.
It was a stressful months being away for more than 3 months because we both have to save up money for the wedding. But knowing me, I needed a break, so I went to Singapore for the weekend. I was staying at Oom Adhi’s place so I hung out with Noah. He was showing me lots of snapchat hack and stuff when I stumbled upon something on his phone that I thought looked familiar.
So I asked “Noah what is this apps?”
He answer it very calmly “Oh it’s called Tinder. It’s an app to find a girl or guy to meet up and hook up if you want to. You didn’t know that?”
“No. Show me how it works.”.
Yessss I didn’t know what tinder was. I had to discover it from my 21 years old cousin. I was pretty innocent on that sense. Then Noah showed me the whole swiping things, but I still couldn’t remember where did I saw it.
Then he said “You could also pay for a passport and you could literally swipes anywhere in the world.”
As soon as he finished saying that, I remembered where I saw the apps. It was on Brandon’s phone, on the news folder. So I installed tinder and pay for the passport service, I swiped in London!! Hoping that if I was right seeing the apps on Brandon’s phone, then I would find his profile in it! But I didn’t actually know what I was gonna do had I found him in there.
So that weekend in Singapore, I didn’t stepped outside of the apartment at all. I keep swiping to find Brandon.
So the time I left for home, Noah, also leave Singapore for UK for a summer trip with his lads. And I really couldn’t stop thinking why Brandon got the apps on his phone. What he could possibly done?
I was gonna tell Brandon that Noah is gonna be around and maybe he could hang out with him some time. But I keep forgetting it.
By the end of his trip, Noah went to watch Liverpool match on the weekend with his mates. He then upload bunch of picture in Anfield on his facebook. Where I caught someone that looked like Brandon on the back wrapping his arm around a blonde lady and she looked much older than me. I then sure it was him because he wore his favorite blue shirt and cap that I bought for him.
My head was about to explode. Noah might failed to recognize him because they only meet that one week we spent in Singapore. Brandon did not tell me he was gonna watch Liverpool match, in fact he was never a football fans, ever… I had a hard time to process stuff. But I tried my best to be calm. I texted him his whereabouts and he told me he was in Dorset with his paternal family. So the blonde lady might have been his cousin? I didn’t bring up my findings to Noah or him.
I was scrolling on Noah’s pictures when suddenly there was a photo tag to Brandon’s profile popped on my timeline. It was the exact same girl I saw on Noah’s background.
I then checked the girls profile and found a lot of picture of them from the two weeks back, but she didn’t tag Brandon. The girl was Dutch, I keep scrolling and found out she was 5 years older than Brandon. And even if my Dutch was not perfect, I understand the whole context. At one particular picture, the girl put a caption of their picture together where she laid her head on Brandon’s shoulder affectionately “Mijn liefde voor je blijft hoger dan de Himalayas.” and I was like, what the hell..
It was only 2 months prior to the New Zealand elopement plan, and I didn’t know better, I just had to talk to him asap. So then I called him and he said to me “She was just a random girl I met in London, no feelings, nothing.”
I meaaannn, help me understand why a rando from London is in Anfield with him? Things just didn’t added up. Of course I was not satisfied with the answer. So I said “Sure, she’s a rando. You wouldn’t mind me asking her then, would you?”
Brandon was sound so mad and said “Bloody hell. Fine, if you couldn’t trust me, your boyfriend of three years that will be your husband in less than two months..”
I add the girl and slid to her inbox. “Hey, do you mind I’m asking who you are to Brandon?”
She deliberately answered “I’m his girlfriend. Who are you?”
My heart break into pieces.. I replied “You could asked him who I am.”
She then said “Brandon said you were his ex. Listen I’m too old for a drama, I knew something was off about him.”
I then replied “Now that you guys are together, I guess I’m really his ex then. I didn’t want any drama either, I’m too young for it. You can keep him.” Then I blocked her.
My heart burned sooo bad, I can hardly breathe but I didn’t cry, I couldn’t. It was the first heartbreak that breaks me entirely.
Brandon didn’t try to call me back to explain, so I guess I got the final answer. He then proceed to block me off everything. Considering we were together for 3 damn years I did not expect that behavior at all. This was particularly the reason that eventough we’ve been parted ways for yearsss, my head couldn’t really take it and still demanding a closure of ‘why he did what he did’.
If I could learned anything from it, shit happened and that’s alright. I’m just glad I didn’t marry him. The whole preparation I made was consuming my soul to its core, I was hurt badly, but life goes on.
Since I’m so done with him, I think it was only right for me to text Lieke and I did. I said “Lieke, I know you love Brandon and he’s like your own brother, and I’d like to thank you for that, for being there for him always, and I hope you guys will always get along. I broke up with him today over stupid things he’s done. Anyway, take care!”
And as much as I think Lieke liked me, and would be taking my side on this, Brandon was a brother to her… she didn’t actually say anything..
So that was what happened to Brandon. Religion was just a tip of an iceberg I never knew I was gonna face.