[Hey, that’s me] Hell Joseon international
by Guest Beanie
Fight My Way
Two years ago, I was burning out of my first full time job after only a few months, and it triggered an anxious meltdown that I am still recovering from today. I had never had anxiety before, but now I was obsessing over what had gone wrong with this job, what I could have done differently, and what was wrong with me. I felt like I had to be brutally honest with myself if I wanted to figure it out, which led to a lot of negative thoughts.
I figured I was just not suitable to be a functioning adult, but I would have to deal with it somehow. Could I live the rest of my life in that office like a robot, turning off my personality and my brain? Turning off my interests and my dreams? My waking hours were a swirl of panic as I tried to figure out what to do, and I had stress dreams every night. Should I stay and tough it out, or was there somewhere I could go that would be different, somehow?
The Best Hit
I lost interest in my hobbies, and I was desperate for something to fill up the hours of the day. When a new batch of dramas began, I had my hopes pinned on finding something, anything, that would distract me from my thoughts.
Starting with a drama called Fight My Way that summer, every single new drama that I picked up was about me. All the characters in Fight My Way were me, working at jobs that were not suitable to them. When Ae-ra pasted a smile on her face to cheerfully greet customers but was seething inside, that was me. When Dong-man didn’t want to talk about his former dream with his coach, that was me. When Joo-man put off proposing to Seol-hee because his job meant he wasn’t yet good enough for something like marriage, that was me. It was especially me when Seol-hee went to work in the company uniform, even though she didn’t have to, because it was easier and cheaper than spending effort on dressing nicely in clothes that suited her.
Fight My Way
Strong Woman Do Bong-soon, The Best Hit, Because This Life Is Our First, I Am Not A Robot, and Thirty But Seventeen all came out in the next year or so, and I watched them in quick succession. I cried like a baby in the early episodes of each drama when someone was untethered and adrift in the world, ashamed of not finding the usual type of success, or trying desperately to make the thing they liked work for them. It was clear to me that the whole world was feeling lost along with me, that they saw my pain and knew where it came from.
The Best Hit
And as the episodes went by, it was also clear that they were saying we would all find our path eventually. We would all be okay.
I didn’t finish most of those dramas (I have a bad habit of dropping off after the third quarter), but I think I paused them in the right place for me at the time. I saw so many characters turn from something that gave them pain to even pursue, only to lay their eyes on something or someone that gave them joy, and that valued them just as they were.
I won’t say that Fight My Way was the only thing that inspired me to quit the job that gave me nightmares, but it was definitely there as I tried to figure out what I wanted from life and forgave myself for not succeeding this time. That show and its successors showed me that there were others like me, which meant that there was space for me in this world. They reminded me that work doesn’t have to consume your whole life, and that you can stand up again after you get knocked down. The really important thing in life is people—which is very, very easy to forget amid the stark practicality of anxiety.
Fight My Way
- [Hey, that’s me] A mirror to my future
- [Hey, that’s me] I wish I were her
- [Hey, that’s me] Pieces of me
- [Hey, that’s me] Me in the trap
- [Hey, that’s me] Scissors and locks
- [Hey, that’s me] The mouse in the sharehouse
- [Theme of the Month] Hey, that’s me
- [Theme of the Month] Villains
- [Theme of the Month] K-dramas and community
Tags: Theme of the Month