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by Randy Lamug 7T8
I've known Mutya since 5th grade. We went to the same grade school and high school together. It wasn't until our 3rd year in high school that we became close friends. I left the Philippines on December 1978 with my family to start a new life in the United States. But before I left Mutya and I made a promise to keep in touch. What transpired was a chain of letters that lasted for over 5 years. Within those letters was a revelation of a mutual love for each other. A secret love that found its courage to be conveyed through letters. We wrote about a million tiny things in our letters and when you add it all up it just meant that we were supposed to be together.
In December 1984, I went back to the Philippines for a month long vacation. Mutya and I started dating since the first week that I arrived there. We were finally able to do the things that was once could only be shared through the boundaries of our written messages. There is a memory book in my head filled with precious moments with Mutya. But two stands out, including the exquisite joy of holding her hand for the very first time that made me feel so alive. It was like coming home, only to know home I had ever known. And, the feeling that the hours of the day seem not long enough for each other. For each time we're apart seems to be an eternity. And our desire to be always together became so overwhelming.

So on December 27, 1984, Mutya and I decided to get married. We only had a few days to celebrate as new husband and wife and then it was time to part. I went back to the U.S. on January 1985. It was hard on both of us. We both had great difficulty accepting the fact
that we will not be together for who knows how long. The first few months were the hardest. Valentine, Christmas and our first year anniversary felt so far away. But although we were thousands of miles apart, our love is something that transcends distance and always believed that what we have is so incredibly real, and it both gave us strength and faith to know that we will make it. Mutya and I were united in San Diego, California on January 1986. Mutya and I are
currently working on our 19th year of marriage. We have two daughters, Aiza Marie, 16, Astrid Marie, 14, and a son Randy Junior (RJ), 7, who was born on December 27, 1995, a precious gift from the Lord Almighty for our 11th year Anniversary