Reflection: my life as a jerk or how I seek true love in every relationship

(Illustration by Emily Joyce)


For years, friends asked me, “What are you doing?” Having about 12 casual relationships over three years was not a normal thing.

Sex addiction? A jerk? I don’t know. But even though I had many relationships, and ended many relationships, the only one that mattered was the true love.

One of my friends once said to me, “All these relationships are not good for you. Find one girl and stay with her.”

I answered him, “It was fun.” But actually I knew it was not fun. It just relieved my emptiness and despair.

At the end of every party, I would grumble to my friends, “You–you all don’t know what’s going on.” They didn’t know that with every relation- ship, I was seeking that feeling of true love again.

At its worst, I found myself in a woman’s bed, but called her by the name of my true love–Nicole. The name is the origin of all my casualness, which dates back to eight years ago.

The first time I “saw” Nicole was in a labor class in high school. We were 15 years old.I had noticed her earlier, but this was the first time I dared to “see” her.

Our mission was to clean a large window together. Nicole looked at me stiffly and said with a smile, “Can I clean the lower part and you clean the higher part?”

“Her smile caught my eye!” I told my friends. And years later, I still mention that smile to my friends.

I have been thinking about that smile it for five years.

A woman will become picky if she misses the man who is her true love. When a man misses the woman he really wants to marry, he becomes indiscriminate, seeking connections with any woman.

Be compared with these 12 relationship, I treated Nicole differently. Nicole was not good at math, I would not bother to repeat the solution even more than three times. But if others asked me the same question above one time, I would laugh at them, “Decayed wood cannot be carved.”

Nicole was pretty good at English, and I always asked questions even though I knew the answers. I would look for every single chance to stay with her. I accompanied her to play ping-pong during the break time, accompanied her to eat dinner after class, and sat beside her in the self-study class. I gave her a scarf as a gift for Christmas and took her to the amusement park on her birthday.

Everyone knew I liked Nicole, even the head teacher had heard about it. Nevertheless, I did not know how to express my heart. The classmates had forced me to express, and Nicole was so anxious that she kept asking me, “why don’t you just say it?”

But I was a dead duck — stubborn. Nicole was angry so that she ignored me. A few weeks later, I became more and more haggard from day to day. I was lovesick.

In the final exam, Nicole surpassed me for the first time in terms of grades, and she was also shocked.

After the exam, she invited me to the playground. Before she asked me what happened in the exam, I hugged her.

We finally decided to date.. She al- ways told my friends about that night, saying “I thought I would hear ‘I love you, and be my girlfriend,’ but instead, he just said, ‘It’s all your fault that I didn’t do well in the exam.”

My friends laughed at me, but what they didn’t know was that “It’s all your fault that I didn’t do well in the exam” meant “You don’t know how much I love you.”

We had been together for five
years, through the solemn pledge and across the mountains and rivers, but we would never know that our rela- tionship would be over because of my parents, who were concerned about her family background. Nicole’s brothers had some legal troubles. So it was Ni- cole who decided we had to part ways.

And so in every girl I meet, I am looking for Nicole. But every girl I have met is the same, and they aren’t Nicole.

True love is like the first time you cultivate flowers. You worry about everything. You think of the plant all day: should I let it bask in the sun, or take pictures of it, or water it? I want everyone to know that I have a good flower.

But most of the flowers you culti- vate first time, eventually, died.

What is love? Love is the dream of the hero in the tired life. Whether you believe it or not, there are always peo- ple willing to love quietly in this world.

After these 12 relationships, my search has been fruitless. But I still want to believe in love. I know the feel- ing of true love is somewhere waiting for me calmly. I will move on and find the one.

May you and I still believe in love, and love bravely.