The Unexpected Apologies

What do we owe those from our past who pop up and drop one on us?

Hyun Kim 김현

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At one point in my life, I saw both of them almost every day. They still exist in some of the best and worst memories of my life. Moments that brought out the best in me and the worst in me. Possibly out of each other.

They both DMed on IG. About two years apart. The first one, I didn’t open for almost a year. I saw he’d written and I just let it sit there. It was hard for me not to open it.

I told a mutual friend that I was afraid of what the message might contain and that I didn’t think it was worth the risk. I’d rather suffer from the not knowing. Mostly because I wasn’t at a good place in my life.

I am tempted to get dramatic here and get cliche about healing and self-work and all that jazz. But lately, I’ve been trying to restrain myself from doing that because it feels too easy and I don’t think I should always trust my instincts about the past. Sometimes when we look back we see what we want to see and I don’t know if it was as bad as maybe I want to paint it to be.

But I can say for sure that I was trying my best to get to a better place. Trying to become who I wanted to be. The person who’d sent the DM reminded me of a part of myself that I was trying to get away from. Perhaps I should have confronted it right then and there. But I wasn’t ready.

Fast forward two years and another IG DM. But from a different person. Someone who’d made me…no I don’t want to say made me because, at some point, I had to accept the role I played in the most toxic romantic relationship of my life that brought out some of the ugliest parts of myself. It’s hard to see things clearly when you always see yourself as the victim.

After the breakup, I had a lot of time to myself. A lot of loneliness too. I listened to two songs on repeat every day for almost half a year. Charlotte Wilson’s “Work” and The Weeknd’s “I Can Feel It Coming.” Charlotte allowed me to wallow in my feels. The Weeknd gave me hope that better days were on their way.

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Hyun Kim 김현

Writer/Editor: Vibe, MTV, Tidal. Marketing/Advertising: Nike, Samsung, The Madbury Club. Former #1 Google image search for bald Asian. Seoul->Ithaca->NYC->VLC