Don’t Expect to Be Loved Back
What is love? Why do we love? How do we love? I started to think of all of these questions when I was asked on multiple occasions, “Do you love somebody?“ And saying no was always shocking to people.
When I was 14 or 15, I started to be asked, “Don’t you love anyone? Don’t you have a boyfriend? Don’t you even like any boy? Ever been attracted to one? Why not? You have wonderful, handsome men in your family; you have some nice guys at school.”
Even after university, these questions were repeated. I always said no, because actually, the idea of loving someone was strange—and I just did not know what love is. How do we love and why do we love?
I got my first answer of what love is when I was 14. In the rural areas of my country there was not much technology and there were not any interesting TV programs to watch except a Korean series. One day in an episode of that series, a girl asked her mum what love was. Her mum answered that true love has no reasons; you will know that you love a person truly when you ask yourself why do you love him and will say to yourself “I don’t know,” and you really don’t know.
For me, the answer was enchanting and magical. Love is something mysterious that will sweep your heart, and you don’t have to search for it.
The kid part of my mind works more than any other parts of it. I grew up hating men and could not ever stand talking to a man, although I had a really loving father who was a kind partner to my mum. I was never jealous that other girls had boyfriends or they were living a love story. All I thought is that these people were totally crazy because they were missing the fun of playing, enjoying nature, and climbing trees like kids. I had a vision of a respectable religious husband and he would be always my first and last love. I also believed, and still believe, that first love is the most magical one; for that reason, everyone should be cautious to make it the last.
I grew up as a tough girl with no heart, as my brother once told me. I agreed with him, and I did not know why; maybe it was due to some difficult experiences during my childhood. That tough heart started to get more sensitive by studying literature at university. Through studying literature, another part of my personality started to be revealed. I acquired the skills of analyzing personalities and words, and I learned how words are more powerful than I ever imagined. I have gained wisdom. I have learned how to be objective and see the world from different perspectives, how to see the other side of a story and never judge.
I learned to follow my heart and not to do anything except when my heart says: “Yes, go for it.” After graduation I wanted to be financially independent and although I always wanted to work as a customer service agent like my friends, I discovered that I did not like it.
One day I was searching for a job and I found a job vacancy to work as an English instructor. I applied, got the interview, and also got the job.
My first student, my first love
Without going into details, I can say that I fell in love with my first student. I did not know when it happened. I did not know how and I did not know why. I could not answer any of these question I asked myself.
Since I had never loved or even liked a man before, I did not know what love was, but I knew it was like a disease that spread swiftly. All I knew was that he was everything my mind did not want, but my heart did. My pride refused to accept the idea that I, who met more handsome and better men and never loved any or became attracted to any, loved this person. We were close friends, but I never told him. I blamed God that, after years of praying to find just one person to love throughout my life, I had found myself loving this person who was even younger than me.
I started to have physical and psychological problems. I had a severe depression, stopped eating, lost weight, and hated myself. I busied myself with studying, working, and getting closer to myself and God to understand the wisdom behind this, since I believed that everything happened for a reason. I started to learn from the experience and try to fix things.
I should admit that it is one of the most wonderful things that ever happened to me. It changed me into the person I am now. I had never felt the existence of my heart before and I started to feel it, through the beat, through that feeling that is deep in the blood, moving through your veins. I knew it was true love because I could not answer any of the magical questions of love. I became tender, calmer, and I learned that when you love someone, you have to know that you are the benefiting from it and can never expect to be given love back.
Through this experience, I learned how to love. I also learned what it is to love someone who does not love you, how to love someone who will talk about another person he loves, and how to love a person your mind does not want.
To love someone you never expected to love and don’t know why means that you need to go beyond the sensible reasons and ways of love. It means you love just because you enjoy being in love. You also learn how to love the smallest things that could be loved in a person, to pay attention to the details. You love despite the pain. You wish the best ever for him even if it has nothing to do with you.
Through those four years I kept praying I would wake up one day without this mysterious feeling, because I did not want it to continue. I wanted it to stop. Being a sister and a close friend to someone you secretly love is tough. I knew that one day I would destroy everything because of the stress—and it happened. One day, when I woke up, I could not feel that strange feeling I had had every morning for four years. Its light disappeared but its effect could not stop.
To Mr. Chocoholic: I will always be very grateful that you existed. You were something magical that was sent to me because God only knows how I needed this. Thanks for changing me to the person who I am now. Thanks for every moment, good or bad. You revealed me.
To my dear God: Thanks for the beautiful things you send to me that are hidden under the pain.