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[2018 Year in Review] An intermission with a crescendo

By TurtuallySarcastic

Before I describe my 2018 in K-dramas, I’ll have to take you all with me on a short flashback to my end of the year review for 2017. I was unemployed and therefore lost, until I watched Chief Kim tell our beloved glutton to just turn back towards the right path and redeem himself. If our glutton could have his redemption arc in the last episode, then I could have my redemption arc in 2018. I was so proud of myself for coming up with that fitting K-drama metaphor, and I vowed back then to write this as a sequel, to see if and how much I redeemed myself in 2018.

Surprisingly enough, I did not redeem myself. Why? Well, to redeem yourself you have to do something terribly wrong first. Then you atone for your sins and only then will you be worthy enough to receive better things in life, or so I thought. While unemployment does feel like an atonement for some heinous crime, it wasn’t until I live watched Thirty But Seventeen this summer that I realized how toxic that redemption arc metaphor was to my mental well-being.

Our protagonists Seo-ri and Woo-jin might know what I am trying to explain. Seo-ri woke up after thirteen years in a coma and she struggled to let go of her old life and dreams, while at the same time trying desperately to get a grip on her new life. Way too often have I been in her shoes, wondering why I could not get a job, why I remained stuck while everyone moved forward, or why everyone but me seemed to adult so effortlessly. Seo-ri used the musical intermission metaphor to describe her current situation, a break in her life before the show of her life goes on to bring her more good things. She encouraged me to break free from my metaphorical unemployment coma and redemption arc mindset, and instead gifted me her healthier intermission mindset to put into practice.

Our Mr. Gong suffered a trauma after witnessing a horrible accident, and unjustly blamed himself for that accident for the following thirteen years. It was a joy to watch him gradually overcome his trauma and return to his old true self. There should be more male K-drama leads as kind, supportive, and open-minded as Woo-jin out there, both on our screens and in our environment. Woo-jin was my mentor who taught me that bad things often happen to us without us having any control or responsibility over it. At the same time he was also my personal coach who ordered me to make the most of my unemployment and my life, instead of punishing myself some more for something that was not even my fault in the first place.

I cannot talk about mentors without mentioning our knowledgeable housekeeper Jennifer. In the eyes of everyone else she is gifted with extensive knowledge, and her unfazed attitude towards it all made her seem even cooler. To Jennifer however, this knowledge turns out to be anything but a gift. Instead it painfully reminds her of the times when books and libraries were the only shelter from her pain.

Jennifer taught me that lifelines at our lowest might turn into assets that bring out our best. One of my shelters, or the redemption arc as I used to call it last year, was going back to school during the first half of 2018 for a degree in administration. Not only did I actually earn that degree, it also got me a temporary administration job nearby pretty quickly, and I am still employed there at the moment. In the same way, Jennifer blossomed the moment she decided to appreciate herself and her talents in the same way we viewers had been doing all along.

Of course I saved the best for last, my fellow aunties. Our beloved nephew CHAAAAAAN! Chan represented my relatives whenever he worried about his growing chick or his uncle. Chan and his friends represented my friends whenever they got excited about food, or whenever they helped Seo-ri without asking questions or for a reward. Most of all, Chan represented the Beanies of Dramabeans. Whenever he sat down together with Seo-ri in the garden to hear about her day, or shared a hot chocolate with his uncle, there was genuine warmth between them. I feel the same warmth whenever I read your replies and encouragements on my comments, and it makes me determined to become even more active on Dramabeans in 2019.

My 2019 might not end up being a fairytale nicely tied with a bow on top, but it should be a good year if I just remind myself regularly to not waste my time worrying and holding myself back while I should be spending my time on things I love; with people I love.

As our Chan would say: Don’t think, feel!

 
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I loved Chan! He represent the good people in our lives, also ourselves kinda trap in the drama of our lives.
I love the character, never desapointing, always sincere, always warm.
This drama makes me doubt in one point.. maybe Chan turnad in the bad guy of this? the answer: no. Of course no, but its so hard dealing with a broken heart, even for a very good kid. For this reason i love the script, wasnt predictible for me. Well... im new in this universe (k dramas) i didnt see all, but i seen a lot in this two years, so this drama is very unique, autentic, and original for me.
Such a good characteres!
Chemestry, innoncence, deeply feeling.
This drama is like a normal life with a fantactic situation, but still common life.

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I recently joined Dramabeans and I couldn't have picked a bitter time - there are so many lovely end-of-year pieces right now. I've also found myself wondering "why everyone but me seemed to adult so effortlessly"and it brings me comfort to know I'm not the only one who feels this way.

Thirty But Seventeen came just when I needed it. I was struggling with real life and it was healing to come home and watch these nice people being nice to each other in a nice house. Seriously, every single one of them was kind and supportive and lovely and I wanted to adopt them all.

I also wanted to be more like them. Adulting seems to require us to be hardened in order to survive and I hate that. This drama was a reminder that it's OK to be soft. To be kind. To take a chick home and raise it as your child.๐Ÿ˜‚

So here's to our quirky family and our sunshine son, Chan: Don't think, feel!

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I'm so glad that someone else resonated with Thirty But Seventeen this year! It's just a little healing pocket of good things - the antidote to Pandora's Box.

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This was lovely. 30 but 17 was such a sweet, healing show. I'm glad it was able to give you a healthier mindset. Wishing you all the best in 2019!

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Love your article!!! Oh my!! I worked almost the whole year, but nothing that I wanted or for what I studied. For me it was an intermission too, which I want to end from January on and not give up, like all this characters, until I get my reward.
Thank you a lot for the encouragement. ๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ˜Š

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I'm cheering for both of you! ๐Ÿ’•

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Hereโ€™s to good things in 2019!

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Wishing you the best!

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I loved this. Here's to hoping you stick to that mind set and move forward (in your mindset, naturally). I feel like society is stressing us to rush and hurry things when stuff sometime, nsturslly, take time. And this show taught me to take my time and accept whatever comes my way. Fighting beanie chingu!

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I am slow and a late bloomer in many ways, and society keeps barking at me to keep up while I am sprinting already...so I completely understand and agree with you! ;)

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This was wonderful! This was definitely my favorite rom-com/Melo this year. My son, Chan, was the scene stealer this whole drama. And Yang Se-jong was amazing as usual.

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I remember signing on to 30B17 when you gave it your imprimatur @ally-le so thank you. I really enjoyed it and I do remember you commenting on how handsome you thought your son Chan looked in his suit. LOL.

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Everyone looks more handsome in a suit!! Just ask my husbandโ€”who I never say โ€œnoโ€ to if he asks me anything while wearing one! But yes, Chan looks especially good in a suit.

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Believe me, if you had not announced the adoption of Chan, many of us would have volunteered instead! :p Oh well, we are his cool aunties :p

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Ooohh! @turtuallysarcastic What a wonderful end of year piece this is! Yes, I'm back, and am so glad to get to read your lovely year-end review and all the great thoughts and attitudes that 30 But 17 has given rise to. I am quite touched to be in the bunch compared to sweet, caring Chan. I admit that I feel the same when I'm here on DB. I've never been able to figure out whether it's kdramas or DB that I'm more addicted to or whether both just feed into each other. But it's definitely the great, warmth of community here that keeps me coming back!

I'm glad that you've come to the realization that you don't need to be redeemed at all. We all just do the best we can, with what we have and with people along the way to help us. Knowing that there's always a crescendo and more than one along the way in our lives, makes every intermission a nice vacation, in preparation for the new things life will bring our way. Cheers!

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Aww, you read my piece! Well of course you are part of the bunch, you survived my unemployment nagging for crying out loud! :p
I really liked the slice of life message that life is actually not that bad. Usually I hear all black or all white, but this was a beautiful shade of gray...silver maybe? ;)

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Thank you @turtuallysarcastic for the lovely year end essay. I wish many good things come your way in 2019. 30 But 17 was very enjoyable and unusual too for avoiding a lot of negativity. Chan was such a good kid!

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Thanks so much for this beautiful and inspiring piece, @turtuallysarcastic. I may have built a FINSE at the beginning of this drama but quickly came down from it. Such a cup of hot chocolate for the soul - with marshmallows to boot.

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Try to stay on FINSE when Chan is waving from the garden....yeah failure garanteed ;)

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Lovely review, and yes, the positive metaphor of โ€œintermissionโ€ helped me a lot too!

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Incredible review @turtuallysarcastic ๐Ÿ’• I relate so much to finding a future career daunting especially when everyone else 'adults effortlessly'. I'm really glad you're now in a healthier more optimistic mindset (yay to 30 but 17 and Cheif Kim) and I hope you find a career or a path that makes you passionate and happy. Write again next year- I'd love to know about your journey since I'm stuck in the same place ^_^ .

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I actually had not considered making it into a trilogy....hmmm *strokes chin*:p You should write one for 2019, since you are stuck in the same place. Planning a piece for a whole year and being able to acually write and publish it has been very rewarding and healing for me ;)

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Reading your words, @turtuallysarcastic, I felt as if I was watching 30 but 17 again. Such a warm and fuzzy feeling! I love it when dramas resonate with people and this one in particular had a great message โ€“ dreams can change and intermissions can be exciting. I often feel lacking in being a 'proper' adult. But in truth, there is no proper way to adult.

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This drama was like a cup of hot chocolate for the soul ~

Not just the characters, but the music too. This drama reminded me of my love for music, to let me honestly enjoy my โ€œintermissionโ€ in a job I donโ€™t love by spending the time and cares it frees up playing music and enjoying the moments in life.

@turtuallysarcastic this was a lovely write up. โ€œDonโ€™t think FIL!โ€

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Thank you ! I'm in intermission period too, waiting for the crescendo. I have to constantly remind myself to stop worrying and be grateful for what I have.

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Woohoo, the sequel got published as well! Thank you Dramabeans staff for editing and publishing my review! Thank you Beanies for reading and for your nice comments. It feels as if Chan has taken over the comment section ;)

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Loved your post and the lovely metaphor between your life and this drama. Thirty but Seventeen was definitely one of the very few decent dramas of 2018 (please be better, 2019!). In fact, the warm fuzzies I have for this drama are so strong after reading your post that I think I am going to do a binge re-watch during the Christmas holiday. ^^

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I really enjoyed reading your piece @turtuallysarcastic! Thirty But Seventeen was one of my favorites this year and one I could really relate too. In my case, I feel like I matured really quickly, but never grew up if that makes sense. While my peers have continued in their careers and have started families, I feel that for every step forward, I take like three steps back. But I've also decided to not let that get to me! I am in my own crescendo and there is no need to compare myself to others! I hope that 2019 is better for all of us. Take care and fighting!๐Ÿ˜€

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You are making sense to me. I guess it is a human thing to try to reach all the destined milestones at the right moment. Thank god the only milestone Beanies care about is how many K-drama (episode)s you watched. ;)

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This is a beautiful read @turtuallysarcastic. Thank you for authoring this piece and thank you for being one of the Beanies.

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Thank you for your kind words @ndlessjoie . I wish you amazing holidays and an awesome 2019. Let us continue being fellow Beaniefriends! :)

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I hope you have a wonderful holiday (and some time to relax). ๐Ÿ’–

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It's also my most favorite drama of the year! I actually sent in my submission about this gem for this month's theme of the month just before I read this. I don't know whether it's gonna make it or not haha but I don't care because I'm just so happy knowing so many connected with this show. Hopefully more shows with this kind of quality next year!

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Great minds think alike! I'll be keeping an eye out for your submission. Please post it on your fanwall, or send me a link on my fanwall if it does not get published. You made me curious ;)

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Awww thank you for this! May we enjoy the intermission and have a blast when the show starts! xD

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Thanks for finally writing about >[2018 Year in Review] An intermission with a crescendo > Dramabeans Korean drama recaps <Loved it!

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I had just finished this show today and wow I'm so IN LOVE with this show. I didn't think I'd like it this much, but it was full of hearts till the very end. I'm at my 'intermission' now. Like you, this change of mindset really helped me. As I read my journal from last year, a lot of the things I hoped for didn't happen. I graduated, but I haven't got a job yet. I wanted to do a job that I love and I wanted to do my own things, but afraid what other people (esp family) will react. Nobody explicitly says I must have a job soon, but I can feel the pressure, from what seemed like a harmless questions from them, could be something I'd be thinking all night long. Will I get to do something that I love and make money off it? I don't know.
I thought people are so good at adulting, and it makes me feel better everyone also felt that way. Everyone is also confused.
This show was such a fresh air to me, after a long drama break, I found this drama that I love so much for 2018!
I already liked Ahn Hyo Seop from Father is Strange and this show solidifies my love for him. Chan was amazing! Also discovering Yang Se Jong as this is my first drama with him in it. His voice is so good. And
I need Mr. Gong. I love his calmness. Shin Hye Sun! I like her in My Golden Life tho I dropped it, she is amazing here too as cheerful Seo Ri.
May 2019 be better for allll of us! Thanks beanies for being amazing.
DON'T THINK, FEEL!

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@mintful, I am so sorry for missing your late comment! :(
I do hope 2019 started out better and will be a better year for you as well! Chan and I are cheering you on! ;)

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