My Liberation Notes: Episodes 7-8
I don’t know about y’all, but despite its slower pace, this drama has been flying by for me. It’s hard to believe we’re already at the halfway point. This week is all about what it means to like someone and how that experience varies from person to person. For some, it’s all butterflies and nerves. For others, it’s comfort and freedom. While one sibling settles into her relationship, another agonizes over whether to take a risk and confess her feelings.
EPISODES 7-8 WEECAP
We focus a lot on Ki-jung this week who is acutely feeling the pains of a crush which is growing stronger with each day. She’s the type to throw herself into her feelings, and they consume most of her thoughts and actions. It doesn’t help that she has to watch Mi-jung content in her new relationship with Gu.
The sisters couldn’t be more opposite in their experience of their feelings. Ki-jung is all uncertainty, anxiety, and intensity, whereas Mi-jung’s feelings have brought her a calmness and sense of security. Mi-jung shares with Du-hwan and Chang-hee that she’s never felt her heart pound from romantic feelings – in fact, when she likes someone, her heart beats slower “like I’ve been freed.”
Chang-hee is wowed by her perspective and hypothesizes that the heart only pounds from the anxiety of uncertainty; when you know something is yours, you feel at peace. But there’s no peace for Ki-jung who is a ball of nerves and insecurity about her feelings for Tae-hoon, and Chang-hee’s constant reminders of her past disdain for any man who confessed unreciprocated feelings for her doesn’t help.
Ki-jung is a naturally straightforward person, though, and can only bottle her feelings for so long. She decides to confess, but she needs an out to feel safe. When she overhears Du-hwan considering feigning injury and subsequent amnesia if his own confession goes sideways, Ki-jung says she’ll give it a try. Oh no.
She enlists Chang-hee and Du-hwan to stand by while she meets with Tae-hoon. Their oh-so-brilliant plan is to fake a motorcycle accident if she gives the signal. That way, she can pretend to faint and forget her confession if it fails. This is such a terrible plan.
Ki-jung meets Tae-hoon at a café and barely musters up the courage to admit her feelings. He’s floored, leaving them both awkward and feeling guilty. All he can say is that he’s sorry while Ki-jung struggles to contain her tears and says it’s fine.
She walks away and gives the signal, so Chang-hee and Du-hwan advance on the bike. Then, Chang-hee reaches out from the back of the bike and gives her a hard shove. HA, oh my gosh. But of course, this does not go as planned and instead of a nice, controlled fall, Ki-jung fractures her arm and ends up running away in embarrassment, leaving Tae-hoon and Chang-hee behind. These siblings should never be allowed to plan together.
While Ki-jung is quite pitiful, I still can’t root for her and Tae-hoon right now. It’s obvious how much his daughter means to him, but Ki-jung seems to be thinking of a relationship with him in very casual terms, not really taking Yu-rim into account.
Tae-hoon shared at a club meeting that he’s afraid of passing on his own insecurities over being an orphan to his daughter who doesn’t have a mom. Ki-jung overheard this, but it doesn’t seem to be hitting her that Tae-hoon and his daughter are a package deal. For all her fuss about dating a man with a child, you’d think she’d understand that the situation may be a bit more complicated.
Meanwhile, Mi-jung is enjoying her growing closeness with Gu. They have several aww moments this week, especially on Gu’s end. When Mi-jung has to work late in a café thanks to her ungrateful, derisive boss, Gu sits at a nearby table to (silently) keep her company while she works. On another occasion, Gu shares that he’s always angry – the only times he feels calm is when he’s drinking, sleeping, or talking to her.
I love how bold Mi-jung is with Gu. Despite her usual apathy, she even fights with him following another rough encounter with her money-grubbing ex. He and his girlfriend supposedly have no money and refuse to handle the loan situation. At her wits end, Mi-jung closes out her bank account and decides to pay back the loan in full.
Naturally, when Gu learns of this, he’s angry. He even offers to have someone “take care of” her ex, saying he only needs a name. Yikes. Mi-jung is angry that Gu isn’t more supportive of her decision, especially when he calls her out on her actions being driven by fear of others finding out about the loan. When her dad found out she changed her official address and was no longer on their household registry, Mi-jung did admit she helped a friend with a loan but kept the defaulting payments a secret.
Mi-jung admits to Gu she feels stupid and blames herself for getting into this predicament. She can’t handle conflict, so of course she can’t fight her ex on this. Gu points out that she’s having no problem fighting him right now. Ha. “That’s because you like me.” He’s stunned but doesn’t deny it. Mi-jung says she wants him to be the person who gives her the confidence to fight for herself.
Gu then gets pretty darn close to a confession when he tells Mi-jung that, although he’s a scary guy, being around her makes him nervous. That in turn annoys him, “yet I still wait for you.” Mi-jung grins and tells him to keep going since she likes the sound of that.
Mi-jung tells Ki-jung (who tells Chang-hee) about how she asked Gu to worship her, which naturally comes as a shock. When Chang-hee then tells Hyun-ah what he’s learned, she guesses that Gu must be struggling a lot – Mi-jung likely is trying to save him.
We get some more hints about Gu’s real identity this week when he takes a call from his hyung who says a Chairman Shin is looking for him. Someone named President Baek, who is on the outs with Chairman Shin, actually spots Gu at a gas station. Gu looks concerned when his hyung tells him he was seen but says he’s “too busy” to go back and deal with the situation head on.
This week’s episodes end with a sign of hope in the form of a rainbow. Everyone from Tae-hoon to the Sanpo crew to Mi-jung and Gu witness the sight. Mi-jung tells Gu that she wishes she could go back in time and sit beside the younger him. Gu argues that’s what she’s doing now because one day, this will be his younger self.
I think what I love about their relationship is the stillness and ease of it. There are no expectations –they just exist comfortingly next to each other. There’s a quiet surety that it’s what they both need right now, and they’re both clearly benefitting from it. I just hope their respite isn’t shattered by whoever these powerful men from Gu’s past are because I have a feeling things are about to get a little more complicated.