Hi. Everybody who is reading this probably knows me, at least a little bit.
I moved from America to Japan years ago, and am trying desperately to make it in the manga industry. I want to draw comics. It might be accurate to say that I just want to tell stories, and inspire people. I want to then, one day, help spread the manga art all over the world. I also want to help other countries create their own thriving manga businesses, drawn by their own people. In other words,
But, you see.. this might make you mad to hear, but I’ll say it anyways, because I feel that it’s important to be honest. I put my whole career and life on hold, for a boy. Maybe it’s just the curse of all women everywhere. We want to be loved, and no matter how strong we want to be, or how strong we think we are, when it comes to love, I’m stupid. I think a lot of other girls out there are like me. When I fall in love, I turn into someone who does the craziest things, who does the stupidest things, to keep that love. When really, the lesson that I want to teach myself is that it’s okay to be alone. It’s okay to wait for that white horse, and if your knight never comes, that’s okay too.
Because I’m not just totally okay without someone, I’m myself. I’m free to be who I want to be, and I don’t do stupid things like putting my career on hold for someone else.
Back to my story. I will give you the short version. It begins a little over two years ago. I was just coming out of working as a mangaka’s assistant for Konomi Takeshi. That job, which I’d had for a year and a half, was a whirlwind of learning, of frustration, camraderie, and triumph. I mean, I was working on a world-famous manga, with a team of really great people! But I bit the bullet and quit, mainly because I wanted to work on my own creations and show them to the rest of the world.
It was really emotional for me, saying goodbye to six people that I’d basically lived with for over a year. I knew that I’d see them again one day, but it was with elation that I was ready to make my own mark on the world! The stress of going back and living in an empty apartment, though, was something that I wasn’t really prepared for. I wasn’t living in one room and sleeping in bunkbeds, constantly with people anymore. Suddenly I was lonely, and low on cash, so I wasn’t able to go out a lot.
So, I reached out to a longterm friend, and someone we ended up dating. It helped, immensely! But I should have listened to his friends when they exclaimed to me on Valentine’s day, “What do you mean, he’s your boyfriend?!” Because a month later, he told me that he had no idea what I was talking about, boyfriend, and I was really a mistress because he had a real girlfriend. Someone whom I had never heard of, that he had loved for a long time.
The relationship had only lasted three months, but it devastated me.
Until a few weeks later, I met someone. I met him at a mangaka party, a friend of the girl, Jenya, who had invited me. His name was Makoto, and he was an illustrator. He was tall and thin, and had this sort of long, gorgeous thick hair. He was also considerate and sweet. At first, at least.
What I didn’t know as I moved into his apartment in the suburbs, and fell deeper and deeper in love, and eventually made plans to get married and have kids, is that from day one, he was cheating on me. From day zero, really.
The girls that I found out about last Christmas, we just one-time flings. Even so, though, I felt like I wanted to die. I didn’t realize, and didn’t find out about until after his elderly dad died in January and he introduced me to all of his extended family as his fiancee, is that he had at least six other women, and he’d been sleeping with at least one of them every week since before we had even met. Two years we’d been together, but that didn’t compare to the 5 years that he had been fooling around with another girlfriend (she had a “real” boyfriend too, so M was just a friends-with-benefits to her, and she didn’t see what I was upset about when I confronted her about it, in tears).
I was so stupid. I didn’t see the signs. They were there, right in front of my face, but when I am in love, I’m just so stupid. It didn’t help that for more than a year, he had been constantly berating me and criticizing me, and I started to forget whom I was and who I wanted to be. I just kept thinking that when we got married, I would be able to stop trying so hard, and then I could finally concentrate on my career path.
When I confronted Mako about all of the girls, he admitted to them. He admitted to seeing them weekly since before we were even involved. He even went so far as to say, at first,
“There’s nothing to worry about. I’m not planning on marrying any of them.”
My retaliation was changing the password on his email so that he couldn’t get into it. (He left it logged in on my computer, which is how I found out in the first place. Do you know he has a folder called “girls I have slept with” in there? How slimy!!!! Actually, it’s the only folder besides “trash,” “inbox,” and “work.”)
Needless to say, I dumped him and it devolved into a big fight, with screaming and name-calling. He called me stupid and loud and selfish (what the hell??!!), and screamed at the top of his lungs, “I will never give up sleeping around!!!”
In a smaller voice, he added saying such as, “If one of them breaks up with me, I’ll just get another. It doesn’t matter to me. I just want to experience lots of different kinds of sex.”
I can really pick ‘em, can’t I?
Then, our fighting escalated and we took it outside, and he started hitting and kicking me. He tried to choke me, and break my arm, and dragged me along the ground. I’ve never been in a violent situation like that before, and I think that I was in a bit of shock, because I’d never thought that he would do something like that. But then, I’d never, ever thought that he was cheating on me the entire time we were dating. Never once.
I’m proud to say that I didn’t hit, kick, punch, or do anything other than self-defense. I screamed, a lot. Which made the neighbors call the cops, and in the end he got slapped with a 100,000 yen medical bill (about $1,000 USD). I didn’t get anything more than scrapes and bruises, luckily, but I’d been in love. And suddenly, everything had crashed down around me.
I moved out as soon as I could, while he stayed at his mother’s down the street. And now here I am, living on my own, and putting back the pieces of who I am. I feel like I’m seeing the world with new eyes, a little bit wiser. I learned a huge, huge lesson.
Like I said, I was stupid. But in the end, not nearly as stupid as Makoto, who will never, ever know what it is like to feel the kind of happiness that only comes from loving someone. I actually pity him. (Okay, I would not be upset to see him kick the bucket, but..)
But meanwhile, I finally have the freedom to be who I am. To be the pure, sweet, and innocent(ish) me! To live for my dreams and goals. I’m a lot happier being single, to be honest! I will use this time to reach people all across the world with my stories, and teach girls all across the world how to believe in themselves. Most importantly, because they will make mistakes just as I did, and get tangled up with selfish, mean people, I want to teach them with my story how to pick themselves up and use those feelings of anguish and pain to do something good!
Without a doubt, I’m stronger than I was yesterday. I’m also a better person, and I have a horrible, selfish player named Makoto to thank for that. Thanks, and I hope that you grow up one day, Makoto. Also, get a job.
To you all- all of my friends who read this whole story, and didn’t bug me for the details that I didn’t share, but accepted the ones that I did. Thank you! Thank you for giving me just a little bit of your time this Friday night (or Thursday, as may happen for you). Thank you for being there for me.
To the haters and the skeptics, I say bring it on! I’ve only loved and been true to myself, and nothing anyone can say can hurt me anymore! Say that I can’t hold on to a man? (As Makoto criticized me.. seriously, what’s wrong with his head?) I say who needs one! I’m fine- we all are fine- alone!
I’m happy, too. ^^
If you think I have shown my true potential before, well you haven’t seen anything yet! From now on, nothing is going to stop me! (^O^)/
See you on my next blog entry, which will be soon!