Table Talks: Seolah Kim

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“I’ve been really interested in human connection; that feeling of connectedness, because from what I’ve observed, a lot of people are lonely. You could be surrounded by others yet still feel alone. And now, people are really taking advantage of social media to help with this.

People will read an article like ’21 signs that you’re an introvert,’ and when they read it and think, ‘oh yeah! This is totally me!’ Cause they relate to it. People are constantly trying to say, ‘this is who I am.’

I think it is hard to be understood. Like, someone knowing you as much as you know yourself. Or maybe you don’t know yourself, and you want someone to be able to explain who you are.

There were moments in my life where me and another we’re able to exchange very little words yet still grasp what we were trying to say. I felt connected to them, and wondered if they were special, like, ‘could this happen with just anyone? What if it comes easier to some than others?’

At first I thought that a connection with everyone wasn’t possible. For someone to understand you is a difficult and rare thing—you can’t just have it with anyone. But when you do, you should hold onto to it because it’s special.

There was a friend who I got to know very well, and I felt a connection with him on almost a cosmic level, if that’s the right way to put it. Nothing romantic. We were talking about the universe. I’d read somewhere that humans are made of stardust, and in that way we’re made up of the universe, and that idea really stuck with me. I loved it. And when my friend understood and acknowledged that idea with me, it felt as if he were acknowledging that I was as meek, as beautiful, and as special as this universe.

But when I brought it up with him later that I’d felt that connection, he said, ‘Oh really? I didn’t actually feel anything.’

That’s when I realized that connections aren’t always mutual. But if it isn’t mutual, then why did I feel that way? And then there are times where the connection is mutual but it just suddenly stops. The person goes away and neither makes an effort to keep the fire burning. In that case, what was the purpose of meeting that person? Was I supposed to learn anything?

At this point, I’ve decided that we need to have those varied significant moments in our lives. It doesn’t matter what you’re supposed to learn—people crave, if not need, those types of connections. And I might never know what drives them . . . Um, but I’d like to find out someday.”

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