It only hurts me when I cry

Let it be forgotten, as a flower is forgotten,
Forgotten as a fire that once was singing gold,
Let it be forgotten forever and ever,
Time is a kind friend, he will make us old.

If anyone asks, say it was forgotten
Long and long ago,
As a flower, as a fire, as a hushed footfall
In a long-forgotten snow.

–Sara Teasdale

Today marks the sad one year anniversary of the date my wife sent me packing.  I’m mostly over it by now, although I do still frequently think of her.  I remember when she loved me and wanted to share in my life, although truthfully those days ended a long time before my ultimate departure.  I also remember the promises and vows we made to each other that she coldly broke, walking away because she decided she didn’t “have a happy life with me”.

It has been said that what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.  And I guess it only hurts until the pain goes away.  In one sense this breakup did kill me because I am certainly not the person I was anymore.  I’m bitter and cynical and have no faith or trust in the whole concept of “love”.  Fuck love, who needs it?  I’m no longer in pain because my heart has become a heaping mass of scar tissue.  These days I’m satisfied with being comfortably numb.

But don’t mistake my epiphany about the meaninglessness of love as an indication that I’ve abandoned the pursuit of happiness.  To the contrary, I’m actually quite optimistic that I will achieve a satisfactory level of joy and contentment on my own terms and in my own way. I know what I want and what I need to be happy, and I expect I will find it in due course.

This is one of my favorite photos of me and Jee Yeun. It was a private moment, not posed, and captured by a friend. As I recall we had spent the weekend in Songtan and we were returning home from my victory in a darts tourney. She was by my side all the way, proud of me, and we loved each other. Or so I like to believe.
That’s what I miss, and that is what I hope to find again sometime. Minus the pretense of love. Just someone who will stay by my side, share in my life, and take care of me. I’ll give the same in return. It can and will happen. Someday, somewhere.

So, looking back over my journey this past year I can say I’ve had some adventures, some happy times, and yes, my share of sad days.  But nothing worthwhile comes easy and I believe I’ve learned and grown and gained some wisdom that will serve me well in the future.  Here’s a quick recap.

I moved into my overpriced but comfortable villa on this day in 2015.  And then I proceeded to get drunk every fucking night for two plus months.  I guess I was exploring the Leaving Las Vegas option, but really it was more about shutting down my brain so I could sleep at night.  I still did my share of shouting at the ceiling though.

Instead of drinking myself into an early grave I wisely chose a more sensible course of action–diet and exercise.  The diet was the low carb lifestyle, the exercise was in the form of walking.  The former gave me a healthier body, the latter worked wonders on my tortured brain.  Together, they resulted in a loss of over 60 pounds.  I look better and feel better about myself.  That was huge in overcoming my depression.

I did my share of travelling these past 12 months as well.  Cambodia, Thailand, and three trips to the Philippines.  In fact, I will be returning to the PI to ring in the new year in Puerto Galera, my first time in that locale.   My current thinking is that I’ll begin and end 2017 somewhere in the Philippines.  Of course, since when have my plans ever gone as planned?  That’s why I will remain in my living one day at a time mode, until such time as I run out of days.  Heh, that’s the plan at least.

I had two women profess their love for me this year (not at the same time of course!). Both ended in hurt and sadness and re-enforced my belief that love is a sucker’s bet.  I feel bad for whatever part I played in bringing pain into those lives, but I will also cherish the memories and good times we shared.

I achieved my goal of becoming debt free.

I presided over the dismantling of my American life.  I sold my house and everything in it. In some ways it felt like a funeral for a life I was forced to leave behind.  But there is also a sense of freedom now in not being tied down to stuff and the old dreams that that stuff represented.  I’m now unencumbered emotionally and materially.  That’s a good feeling. Well, for the most part anyway.

I got promoted to the job I retired from six years ago.  It’s an even bigger pain in the ass now than it was then, but I couldn’t say no to the money.  I’d invested everything I had in a future with Jee Yeun that was not to be.  And now I’m in full recovery mode, including financially.

And so as this year ends I’ve come full circle in my life.  At some point next year I will re-retire and once again pursue the dream I abandoned six years ago when I chose Jee Yeun over the Philippines.  Of course, I’m also six years older and there is no recovering from that.

Life goes on, and so do I.  I’ve got a few more adventures in store yet I reckon.  Stay tuned!

The only time I feel the pain
Is in the sunshine or the rain
And I don’t feel no hurt at all
Unless you count when teardrops fall
I tell the truth ‘cept when I lie
It only hurts me when I cry

4 thoughts on “It only hurts me when I cry

  1. I just moved to Korea for a 2 year assignment with a major aerospace company. I’ve never met you but I’ve been reading your blog since my first trip here 8 years ago. All I can offer is to hang in there you seem to be moving in the right direction. When my wife left me I went on the gin and cigarette diet but eventually woke up in a much better place. The thing with bloggers is I end up caring about people I’ve never met. Please keep the posts coming as I’m very intersted in how much better 2017 will treat you.

  2. Scott, I’m always amazed to encounter readers such as yourself. I really do appreciate your kind words and encouragement. Yes, 2017 is gonna be a great year!

    Good luck to you with your new assignment in Korea. Are you in Seoul?

  3. I’m living in Songdo close to the company I work with. I get to seoul on the weekends sometime. I’ll see if I can find you at one of your dart tournaments.

  4. Haha, well I’ve retired from darts. At least for now. I’m usually found at Shenanigans in Itaewon…hope to see you there!

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