Ed Sheeran.

I’ve finally decided it’s like getting struck by lightning. That point in time is so sudden and so ridiculous – you would’ve never seen it coming. Then, bam. You’re toast. In a good way. Is that possible?

These past few years have been full of colorful experiences. I’ve met a lot of different people, had some really great memories with many of them, and others not so much. Whether I wanted to openly admit it or not, I always hoped to meet someone special. I never had a normal dating life growing up. See, I wasn’t allowed to actually. My mom didn’t want me to bewithchild, and my daddy didn’t want to see me cry. I get it, those are some shit-crazy risks. But at the same time, I had zero smarts when it came to guys. I thought boys could be friends, chilling meant getting ice cream in public, and the sky was mad purple. However, I quickly realized how far off I was – starting in high school, and then continuing on through college. It became a world of awful quirks, senseless lies, mild mental abuse, ridiculous clusterfucks, and infinite rum balls. Yes, I often asked my BFFs for advice or an abrupt slap in the face, but I can honestly say I learned about the opposite sex on my own. Very VERY slowly, but surely. Look. It’s inevitable that the heart will get battered and bruised up, sometimes beyond repair. However, after everything, I don’t have underlying grudges, I eventually forgave all the fucktards, and I still held out hope for getting swept off my feet.

Now, fast-forward to Korea many years later. This is where experience became my teacher for, well, everything. Even lessons I couldn’t even comprehend to ask for became readily available. Yo, being naive was quite dangerous. More than a few guys that I met or even dated ended up having girlfriends or wives back home. It’s no question that Facebook soon became a lifeline. “Why are there many pictures of one woman, and why does she have a ring on it?” It’s sick that you have to do so much research to make sure he isn’t already lawfully attached to someone else in North Dakota, on a farm, with fourteen children, and an ugly goat. But it’s not just me. Many of my friends became victims as well. “He said they are getting a divorce next month. The paperwork will come through the mail. That’s safe right?” NO. “He just broke up with his girlfriend of ten years, and they decided to stay friends. Soooo. I’m not the other woman.” Yo. Run. “He has Skype dates with his ex-wife and son for hours. He just wants to keep in touch with the kid and be a good father.” Two words: still married. All these scenarios never ended well. I guess we just want to believe in happy endings – that seems to be programmed stubbornly into our brains.

Funnily enough, I actually did fall in love with a guy here once, awhile back. Or I thought I did. In the end, I don’t think it counts when he ends up being someone completely different. It’s like what you two had wasn’t real. From that point on, I started doubting what love was – I had no real reference of it. Is it like a kooky syndrome? Does it wear off? Why does it make people nuts? Why is it so high on the bucket list? Why blah blah blah. The movies make it look so easy. Two people have a meet-cute. (Or, you know, try to kill each other.) They talk. They laugh. And boom, they’re married. No divorce, no painful separation, no shriek-filled arguments. They’re happy forever. Nope, false. In actuality, love is difficult. Relationships need continuous work. You could be deliriously happy one minute, and feel completely homicidal the next. That rollercoaster of emotions is what makes it real. It makes it your own kind of unique. You can’t believe the movies, or other people’s “success” stories. Because eventually, you’ll come to realize that you’ll have your own. And it will be way more special than what you pictured it to be.

Therefore, do you. That significant-other business will pop up when it pops up. And always follow your gut.




2 responses to “Photograph

  1. You are right! I met quite a few of these types of dudes in Seoul. I could see myself getting in the same many shits with these double lives back stateside. That was the one downfall I found. Trusting guys..especially military and overseas in general. Totally understand where you are coming from!


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