My christmas spent in Seoul in 2015 was a painful one. As naive as I might be, I couldn’t understand why I couldn’t meet Taenggu on that day. Didn’t she already “promised” me that she would spend the christmas day with me? But it didn’t happen. It was such a huge blow to me – what if whatever that I had personally experienced with Taenggu didn’t, in reality, exist at all? Was I really simply an ordinary stranger to her? Was it just an illusion after all?
The following days after Christmas, I still had to stay strong because I had a friend who was on the trip with me and was totally unaware of my situation and the emotional turmoil I was going through. She was on this trip for the sole purpose of travelling and sight-seeing so I didn’t want to ruin her trip because of me or else I would ideally have wanted to lie in my hotel room all day long just to cry my heart out for the rest of the trip.
It was difficult. With effects of schizophrenia creeping in, I was breathless wherever I went. My friend had planned our whole itinerary for us both. I had neither hard nor soft copy of her itinerary during the trip. So every day, I was simply blindly following her everywhere; she didn’t communicate with me well so most of the time, I didn’t know where we were going to next. I was also too trapped in my own emotional and mental trauma to be able to take charge of anything during the trip. But strangely, there was something within me that held me still even when I was on the verge of falling apart. You may call it my inner strength. But I believed it could be a spirit or soul within me who was silently guiding me in times of crisis. “She” always seemed to have something to teach me, helping me to find a way out of the giant maze of my troubled thoughts.
On 26th December 2015, the day after Christmas, my friend brought me to Petite France located somewhere at the outskirts of Seoul. The main character of this village was none other than The Little Prince.
Prior to this trip, I might have heard of The Little Prince before, but I had never read about the story. This visit to the village made me want to find out more about The Little Prince story because something within me seemed to tell me that it contained something I needed to know in order to heal myself from the relationship issues with Taenggu.
So here are some of my favourite picture quotes from The Little Prince, followed by my personal reflections for each quote and how I relate it to my own issues with Taenggu.
As we grow older, we are so caught up by the daily routines and commitments in life that we don’t bother to set aside quality time to let our imagination flow freely anymore. Our imaginations are limited by rules and rigid systems in our modern world. Why is it wrong to have an innocent heart like a child even when you are in your 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s…? Will you be judged by people for liking Mickey Mouse when you are 80 years old? Because of the way I was taught in schools to be guided by facts and evidence, I, too, became afraid to imagine the impossibles and fantasise. Because without logical facts and evidence, hardly anyone would easily believe in the reality of your imagination in my society. It’s like people telling me, “Escape the reality? Right, show me some facts and evidence that it works first.”
To me, Taenggu is that one unique rose in this whole wide world. A rose with the unique shade of blue and purple that gives off that unique scent that no one has ever come across before. There can never be a second Kim Taeyeon in this world.
I think of Taenggu like the moon (LYRICS: TALKING TO THE MOON). I think of her as the brightest star in the night sky (TO BE A BRIGHT STAR LIKE YOU). Even if she seems so far and unreachable, it makes me happy just looking at her from afar sometimes, just admiring her beauty that she gives off from within. Even if I can only watch her standing on the stage at her concert from the 3rd floor, it’s enough to make my heart melt just looking at her tiny figure and hearing her melodious voice. 😍
Have I been wasting too much time and effort on just one person in my entire life? Friends have advised me, out of good will, that this relationship, even if it is real, can be unhealthy if I always revolve my entire world just around one person to the point that as if every single thought of mine is all about her. I understand where my friends were coming from, but trust me, I’m doing this because it is more of a need than a want. I need to let her know how important she is in my life. I used to keep my love for her deep in my heart to the extent that too much stress and tension started building up. If I stop doing this (writing everyday twitter, instagram and blog posts, and drawing), then not only would I not be able to relieve myself, the communication between us would also break down.
This was probably the most important lesson I had taken away with me from that 2015 trip. Because I had expected her to be with me in person at that time, the outcome was painful. Neither was she there in my heart because I rejected her away from getting emotionally and spiritually close to me after being hurt and I started questioning her love for me. Without her both in person and in my heart, it was double the pain. Today, I have learnt that as long as I keep her close to my heart, it doesn’t matter where I go, I can still feel her close to me as if there is no distance between us.
It puzzles me for the longest time why hardly any other fan could see and hear the same things that I did (like the videos in MOVIE DAY 2017: MY FIRST LOVE CONFESSIONS TO TAENGGU IN 2013 [THE MOVIE]). What started out to be a pure curiosity of wanting to know how she felt during her performances turned into a self-discovery of my ability to read into a person’s heart and soul and detect extraterrestrial voices. No one ever told me I was a psychic. How did I manage to do it without being taught? I guess it all boils down to one word: sincerity. I see things beyond the surface with that piece of sincerity in me. True vision indeed lies in the heart.
My relationship with Taenggu itself isn’t an ordinary one. Because it isn’t ordinary, most ordinary people would not be able to handle it. I felt that strength in me, that soul, that spirit, was trying to teach me to change my thinking and expectation in my relationship. I have to learn to ask for less in return for more inner happiness. The Little Prince conveyed this important message to me. It taught me to be contented with the simplest things. I used to tell those pestering voices that plagued me during my first outbreak of schizophrenia in 2013 that I’m not a saint. How could I endure all these pain with such forgiving heart? I’m still a human being after all. It wasn’t easy; I’m getting better, but I’m still learning.
It is probably worth mentioning that after I returned from my vacation trip in January 2016, Ryeowook from Super Junior released his solo debut song also titled “The Little Prince” in the same month which I also participated in mind-singing for. It was an act of wonders of synchronicity in this universe.
Soon, I will be leaving for Seoul for the second time in winter. What kinds of inspirations and lessons will I be getting and learning this time? I will look forward to them with an eager and grateful heart. 🙏