You know when celebrities open up about a particular disorder or condition that they have and suddenly everyone loves them? When Demi Lovato opened up about having Bipolar Disorder. When Junhyung from BEAST revealed that he is colorblind. When FreshlyFlipped talked about his struggles with having eczema in one of his YouTube videos…
I always thought it was brave of these people to share their imperfections with the public, but I was never truly affected by announcements like these. Now however, I think I understand why it is so important to people to hear that a celebrity suffers from a particular “condition,” let’s call it. People who also share that condition can suddenly relate to the celebrity and feel more comfortable living publicly with their condition knowing that someone incredibly well-known has the same condition.
I know this now because I’ve also experienced this with a “condition” of my own.
I have dry eyes.
You know that feeling you get when the wind blows slightly and you suddenly need to blink a lot more than usual to remoisten your eyes, or you feel like you have something in your eye and need to rub it to get it out? Well, my eyes feel like that all the time. I am literally always aware of how dry my eyes feel and constantly want to blink more often and have my eyes closed for a longer period of time than most people. Two to three times a day I have to put in eye drops to make it better, but even then it’s only a little better. This started maybe four years ago and I have no idea why.
It’s something that makes me extremely self-conscious. I’m always worried about looking strange to others who see me constantly blinking my eyes. I’ve had people ask if I was winking at them when in reality I was just subconsciously doing it in response to the discomfort in my eyes. When it gets to be unbearable, I try as hard as possible to find a private place where I can put in my eye drops without anyone watching me. I feel like I’m the only freak my age who has this problem that I’ve only heard of “old people” getting.
But earlier this year I found out that someone else also has this problem. Someone only a couple of years older than me. And not just anyone – a K-pop singer.
Ken from VIXX.
In one of the VIXX MTV Diary episodes, Ken and Hongbin are at the grocery store and Ken being his normal silly self jumps to sit in one of the shopping carts. When he gets out, everything that was in his back pocket falls into the cart, and one of those things is an eye-drops bottle.
Then in another video, Ken was actually putting his eye drops in and they mentioned that he has to put them in before meeting his fans. In other videos and fancams still, I’ve seen him blinking more often than the average person and sometimes clenching his eyes shut…
…just like I do.
He carries eye drops around in his pocket. I keep mine in my backpack.
He puts eye drops in before events. I put eye drops in before I go to class.
He sometimes lets himself slip and clenches his eyes shut. Just. Like. Me.
It doesn’t seem like a big deal on the surface, but you have no idea how this makes me feel. I’m not even sure what the right word is to explain this feeling: Happy? Relieved? Normal?
Ken, someone I respect as an artist and look up to as a person, Ken, one of the happiest and most popular members of VIXX, has a problem, an imperfection, that I also share. He is like me in a way that I’ve never seen anyone else be.
This sounds weird to say, but I get so happy when I see him blink a lot or clench his eyes in videos. He doesn’t do it often, but those few times that I catch him doing it, it reminds me of the imperfection that we share. It reminds me that there is someone else out there like me, someone who is already incredibly likeable for his other qualities.
I think part of the reason why this touches me so much is the fact that in every aspect of himself, Ken is so confident. He can live his life with so much happiness and passion, being his silly self, but also be confident enough not to hide that he has this problem. When I see traces of his dry eyes, I wonder to myself, if he can be so confident despite this imperfection, why can’t I?
Ken wasn’t always my favorite member in VIXX. When I first figured out this interesting fact about him, it was back when my bias was Hongbin. Now looking back, I think this may have been the point when I started leaning more towards Ken.
It’s like we have a special connection.
So now I have two questions for YOU:
1. Do you have any experiences or unique qualities that you share with a K-pop star?
2. Has anyone else noticed that Ken blinks a lot? I notice it all the time because I do it too, but I’m really curious if it is noticeable to people who don’t have this problem.
#NowPlaying: VIXX – Don’t Want to Be an Idol (One of my favorite VIXX songs ever)