Category : Relationships

8 posts

Because of the quarantine in place, I’ve had a lot of time to myself in the house and decided to do a lot of cleaning. That included my bookshelf, which has a lot of books, knickknacks, sentimental items on display. One of the cute display boxes was a gift from Mart; inside was a purple octopus plushy he had made by hand and a little note for our 8 year anniversary.

Happy 8th year anniversary! Feb 14 2015. Happy Valentine’s Day <3

I can’t think of a better way to explain my love for you other than through this octopus plushy. Months ago, as I brainstormed of what to get you for our anniversary, the 1st thing that came to mind was an octopus. I envisioned the cutest octopus plushy ever but translating that into reality was a much harder task than I imagined. I made my 1st prototype but it turned out pretty bad lol. I used a running stitch w/ thin thread but it didn’t hold the body well enough. The body was basically deformed :( I made too many mistakes and had to start over. I then discovered the almighty blanket stitch and started on my second prototype. I used thicker thread and evenly spaced out my stitching. But it still wasn’t perfect. But I persevered and continued to perfect and practice on my blanket stitching. I used a thicker thread and cleaned my spacing even more. My final prototype was ready. The entire time I was making my octopus, I was smiling and laughing every time I did something right. I even exlaimed at one point, “Grandma’s got nothing on my stitching!” I poured my heart and soul into every stitch just like in our relationship. And even though I made many mistakes, I did my best to fix and continued to improve. The final product is still kinda rough around the edges but the love it represents, through its 8 tiny, cute, little tentacles is undeniable. As I made this plushy, I thoguht of our old memories together and new ones we will make in the future. There’s no other companion I want other than you, Kimmy. I love you so muc hand I’m willing to dedicate my life to making you happy. You mean that much to me. Happy 8 year anniversary sweetheart.

Reading that note didn’t make me cry or feel so broken I used to be. I still felt sad, remembering the love we had for each other, and how it wasn’t enough for us to be together nor for us to be right for each other. But, I am not broken anymore. I think that is such a huge breakthrough and I’ve come so far, considering how utterly deep down into the abyss I was when it all started falling apart. I have gotten rid of many mementos but I do still keep a select few. When I do look at them on occasion, the feeling of hopelessness becomes replaced with a dull ache of sadness yet gratefulness for the happy memories in our young lives. It’s such a cliche saying but what they say really is true. Time does heal.

I had a dream the other week. I received a letter with him telling me how he was wrong in disappearing like he did, and how he regretted it. He wrote about his life now, detailing his new job and how he had to move to Santa Monica due to rent. Everything in my dream was pretty realistic until that detail haha; I imagine living in Los Angeles would mean higher rent. He ended the letter hinting that it would be nice for us to try again. The dream ended with me tearing up, feeling a little torn and sad that he finally gave me an answer, but it was too late because I am now very happy with my life and current relationship.

I don’t normally have dreams and they’re not usually completely coherent and realistic. I think it was one morning where I woke up for work but decided to snooze another 10ish minutes. Dozing off for a short amount of time seems to be the trick to having such vivid dreams.

When I woke up, the dream left me feeling very dismal. I thought it was fascinating that I would have such a realistic dream – obviously my mind still longs for closure with that old chapter in my life.

Sometimes I find myself wondering what would it be like if I could have a telephone conversation to just obtain proper closure for those 10 years. I think about what I would like to say and what I would like to ask. Then I shy away from the thought because I entered a new chapter in my life and don’t want to make the pages bleed together, nor cause any extra pain.

In the last two years of optometry school, there were 3 different life-changing things that I struggled with: My 12 year old feathered baby died. My ten year relationship came to an end. I was physically assaulted.

The evening before I took one of my national board exams, my cockatiel died from choking on food. He was my 12 year old baby. I got him when he was 1 month old and he lived with us until he was nearly 12 years old. I was living away from home and never had the chance to spend more time with him before he passed away unexpectedly and I never got to say goodbye. Sometimes when I take out my keys to open the front door, I still expect my little guy to chirp excitedly at me to take him out to play.

I initiated stepping away from someone I loved with every inch of my being because I knew it was what he needed to get out of his rut and reach the potential I knew he had in him. I still remember how scary it was doing it because I couldn’t imagine a life without him. I had hope that maybe if things were meant to be, we could be a part of each other’s lives again. I met him when I was a teenager in high school and we grew together over the next decade. Nearly 10 years of struggles and triumphs and honestly the best years of my life. It’s not often that even after a decade of being together, you still get butterflies in your stomach and you can’t wait to spend more time together. Sadly, our love story only became a long and tragic one and we grew into complete strangers. We tried over and over to slowly pick things back up, but one day it just stopped and I was ghosted. I think the hardest part for me was being left hanging and never getting closure. Someone I completely trusted suddenly disappeared and I didn’t even know if this person was even alive anymore.

To numb the pain I had tried dating again.

This led to me being raped by someone I had only known for a few hours. For a while it didn’t feel like a big deal. But over time, it ate away at me and ate away until I didn’t really feel like a person anymore. I could barely just keep going, anything to numb the pain.

I did a lot of things I’m not proud of because in some way, I had wanted some kind of control back in my life and I honestly didn’t really care if I ended up dying in the process.

It still chokes me up to remember those days in school where I wished I could have gotten help. Someone would stop in the hallway to greet me and ask me how I was doing, when all I really wanted to say was, “I’m not okay. I need help.” But I never could do that and so I would respond like a robot, “Good, how are you?” Honestly anyone time someone asked me the “How are you?” question, I felt like crying on the spot. On some mornings before my clinic shift, I would cry in my car and just sit there to give myself time to look normal again, and then go to clinic with a smile because I knew it was time to take care of patients and make some people happy.

I easily lost 10 pounds during that year and when I realized it, I thought, “Well, if I can’t feel happy maybe I can keep losing more and feel beautiful.

Sidenote: if you’ve ever wondered about or considered therapy…speaking from experience, don’t hesitate, just do it. You don’t have to go through things alone and why would you want to prolong your healing process? I came to realize that yes, although you may feel like you could deal with it on your own, why not have help coping in a healthy way, promote your well-being, and cut down your healing time exponentially? There’s such a bad stigma attached to therapy but it makes so much sense.

Even without the external factors in my life, optometry school was hard for me. I was used to an entire lifestyle of cramming and easily being a top student but in optometry school, I found myself barely holding on. I found myself surrounded by intelligent colleagues, whose brilliance I’d marvel at. I always felt like the weak link of the bunch and I knew that if I didn’t work hard, I wouldn’t be able to keep up. There were times every single year out of those four years where I felt like, “I’m not going to make it to the next year.” It takes a real toll on you for a full four years while everyone around you seems so beautiful, smart, and successful.

Even after graduation rolled by, I still didn’t get my wings because I was still having trouble passing one of my national board exams. I had my diploma but I didn’t have my license. This put me far behind in the race and left me, again, crawling far behind my classmates. It didn’t feel good. But here I am, I finally jumped through the hurdles and though I’m late, I crossed that finish line! Maybe that’s just always been my style; slow and steady wins the race. One of my friends did nickname me the “comeback kid,” in college, after all.

Hello, again. It’s been a long time. My life in a nutshell since graduating in May of this year:

  • I went on an amazing trip to Asia in June (2 weeks in Japan and 1 week in Vietnam).
  • I studied my ass off to retake (for the 4th time) my national board exam in August.
  • I had to wait anxiously for 2 months for my score to be released.
  • I reconnected with a lot of good friends.
  • I continued a lot of online dating.
  • I started talking to a really amazing guy (now boyfriend) in June and things just drastically turned around for me. I’m no longer a serial dater with a high level of detachment.
  • I started going to therapy to deal with my lingering emotional turmoils & past trauma.
  • I found out I finally PASSED the national board exam!
  • I studied for the last and final exam required for my license: the state law exam – and PASSED!

So now I am playing the waiting game to have my license processed before I can officially start working. Yes, it’s been almost half a year since graduation and although I had a lot of obstacles delaying everything, I’m finally at the end of the tunnel. At this point in my life, I’m hoping to tie up loose ends and do things I need to do while I still have a ridiculous amount of free time.

I decided to create a series called Beyond the Breakup. I don’t think I will post all of the Parts as public. But, I think I feel comfortable posting this as the beginning, Part 1. I thought it might be time to pick a little bit at the old scabs and slowly dive into memorabilia from Mart so that I can slowly let them go & throw them away. I’m doing excellent these days, compared to how miserable I was two years ago. I’m going to keep working on being the best version of myself, continue healing myself, and continue tying up all the loose ends dangling.

One year Mart gave me a lovely red leather box that has a clear window on the lid. He decorated it with stars in the shape of “20” for my 20th birthday. This was in 2009. I had forgotten that inside the clear window was actually a little card-stock with a birthday letter written on it for me.

It reads:

Dear Kimmy,

Today is a very special day, the day you [were] born and the day a star came to life. Yes, Kimmy, you are that star, MY morning star. And for twenty years, you shone bright and brightened up my life. Ever since I met you, my world became a happier place and I’m able to experience so many new things with you. Thank you so much Kimmy. Words can’t describe how much you mean to me and how much I love you. I’m so grateful for this day and I hope I can make it special for you Kimmy.

This was a little over two years into our relationship. It was a special time. That must have been when I had gone into my second year of college.

I’m crying just a little bit, but nothing like the soul-crushing sobs I used to have. Of course I feel emotional. A tiny bit is from feeling the nostalgia and the lingering sadness of how things didn’t last forever.

But, I also feel a bit happy and I’m loving this feeling. I really like this letter. It was such a simple birthday letter from him and as I’m reading it 9 years later, I think I can still really feel the pure love and meaning he had intended behind those words. The whole concept behind it is beautiful. If I was never born, if I never met him, if I never made the moves (heck yeah, always a go-getter) on him, I never would have been able to impact his life positively. Up until that point in his life, he had never felt true happiness and love before. And he was able to make me the happiest I had been in that point of my life as well. How special and amazing that is. Not everyone is able to say they were able to share almost a decade of their youth (16 to 26) with someone. Although it didn’t last forever, we struggled and triumphed and experienced so many different stages of life together. Although it didn’t last forever, at least we had each other at the time. That is truly amazing.

It’s my last night in my lonesome apartment in Lemoore and I’m feeling a little overwhelmed with emotions.

It was lonely at first living in my first apartment alone, in a town where I knew absolutely nobody and I was 300 miles away from friends and family. It was nice being able to have everything reachable in my apartment within a few footsteps since it was just me in a 1 bedroom! I would take a shower, and walk around in my apartment naked while brushing my teeth and preparing breakfast. LOL.

Yesterday I said good bye to Cliff. I honestly didn’t expect to feel such overwhelming sadness, but I started crying when he was trying to say good bye to me, and I just broke down after he left. I don’t think I ever fell in love with him, but I definitely cared about him a lot. I had always known from the beginning it was just for a short-term connection and we’d go our separate ways in a few short months. I thought I’d be completely fine but when the end came, I was overwhelmingly sad. He’s not very good at communicating and he’s got his life here while I’ve got my life in Orange County and we are both pretty set on that, so I don’t think I’ll be talking to or seeing him ever again. But, I am grateful for the memories we shared here and grateful for what we had, making my experience in Lemoore a new, warm, and temporary home for me at the time.

I also felt sad about it being my last day working at the naval air force base, at the hospital. The attending doctors, the staff, the patients, the corpsmen, the technicans – I loved them all and will miss them a lot. It was the best externship/rotation I had out of all the locations I had been to over the last year of optometry school.

I felt sad reflecting on Part 1 of my boards exam; I didn’t pass. It’s going to hold me back almost half a year since I have to study and wait to retake the exam before I can work as a doctor. I’ve come this far, I know I can do it, and I can’t let go of my dreams now.

I felt sad reflecting about my past love and longstanding, intense sorrow for Mart. I’ve wanted to reach out to him again for half a year now. I let myself wait on it so that I could focus on what had to be done. I thought about reaching out to him once I neared graduation, but now after finding out I still need to tackle my boards exam again, I don’t think it’s the right time to let myself get caught up in the spiral of depression again. It’s a very sad thing when he was the light of my life and was the very thing that kept me going during grad school, and things made such a dark turn that I’ve battled against so much afterwards and will soon walk at graduation without him there.

This is just another beginning for me. There is so much more hardship to come, so much more I need to do. And hopefully I can find some happiness someday, too. For now, I’ll finish packing up what’s left in my nearly empty apartment, and move back home to continue the journey forward.