If there’s one thing that we can all agree on during this quarantine, it’s that it has allowed us to have our own little renaissance of discovering and rediscovering books, art, music, and movies.
With the closure of cinemas in response to the spread of COVID-19, some of us have been discovering old movie gems. And one of the movies that has had a “rebirth” is Kung Paano Siya Nawala—the 2018 romantic indie film by Joel Ruiz starring JM de Guzman and Rhian Ramos under TBA Studios.
Kung Paano Siya Nawala (How She Left Me) follows the story of Shana (Rhian) and her boyfriend Lio (JM) who suffers from face blindness—a real-life brain disorder that causes an inability to memorize faces. The film has been well-received by viewers on Netflix and has been a steady contender on the streaming site’s Top 10 list since it became available on August 13. (Read: 3 Relationship Lessons We Can Learn From ‘Through Night and Day’)
Kung Paano Siya Nawala has a lot of life lessons that can be carried on in our relationships—here are some of them!
Trust is earned, not given.
Kung Paano Siya Nawala introduces an interesting medical condition that has become an underlying theme of the film. Lio’s face blindness has led him to build walls of security around himself. He finds it impossible to connect with and trust people other than his mom and sister, but when he meets Shana, his life starts to change.
Shana, being a fun and outgoing person who has been trying to run away from her dark past, tries to connect with and understand Lio on a deeper scale. The two characters journey on building their relationship on the foundation of trust—but eventually, their personal issues start to catch up on them.
Respect your partner’s boundaries.
Lio’s condition has given him a lot of hard times—he didn’t want to be overshadowed by it, nor be seen as a liability because of it. This is why he decided to keep it a secret from everyone. (Read: 5 Easy Ways to ‘Be There’ For A Loved One With Depression)
For Shana, however, Lio took the risk of opening up about his condition in order to build a stronger foundation for their relationship. Unfortunately, Shana had to later on reveal Lio’s condition to his officemates—leading to a misunderstanding between the two characters and eventually, the issues of trust in their relationship.
Learn from the past but don’t dwell there.
View this post on Instagram
"My parents got divorced when I was nine, my Dad moved away since then. We used to go to this coffee shop every Sunday and I would get an iced chocolate and would split a cinnamon roll with him because it was too big for me. I always look forward to that Sunday, but it wasn't really a big deal for me then because I always thought that if we miss one Sunday, there would always be another Sunday. But when my Dad moved away, things changed. Now that I'm older, I would still go to this coffee shop whenever I feel sad about something. It always meant something to me to just sit there, buy a cinnamon roll, have an iced chocolate, and think of those Sundays with my Dad. We can try to hold on to something but things change. I think it's important to treasure moments while we have them. Keep the happy memories, as many as possible, and relive them in your hearts and minds. That's something no one can take away from you." – Bawat #KwentongKungPaanoSiyaNawala ay puno ng alaala. Ano mga iyo?
Shana had a troubled past but pulled herself out of the dark. Lio, on the other hand, has serious abandonment issues with his father and was having a hard time finding forgiveness in his heart. Both characters have their own share of past and ongoing issues that they can’t let go of, and these became the underlying factors in how their relationship turned out in the end.
The heart always remembers.
Kung Paano Siya Nawala teaches us that love is not only defined by what you see, but also by the feeling and memories that your heart has made you experience. While Lio may be suffering from a medical condition that makes it difficult for him to remember, he still was able to hold on to the feelings that are associated with his past. This only emphasizes that in life, while memories can fade, the heart can always remember.