As the story has it, one day I headed to the opposite side of the globe – the Flipside. I arrived in Korea on February 16th, 2005 and thought I’d do a year, then leave. I went from being some random foreign girl to taking on labels I never imagined – university professor, film extra, professional boxer, reality TV star, CEO of my own girls-only fitness company (Flipside Fitness), CEO of my own boxing club (Hulk's Club, formerly known as Hulk's Boxing), and now I'm launching my 3rd business -- Empowered Clubhouse.

After 11.5yrs in Korea, I then picked up one day and returned to Toronto, Canada. But then I left again. This time it was for the Philippines. That's where I am now, living in the land of the happy people. The struggles are real and the struggles are many but I'm living life on my terms, I'm calling the shots, and I'm doing what I love. Life is an amazing adventure and this is my story of yesterday.

Saturday, July 29, 2017

I Am Pink... Saturday, July 29

My next company is called Empowered.... Empowered Clubhouse.

There, I said it and now I wrote it down here for all to see.   I'm owning it. 

I threw it out there on social media via launching both the group page and company page on Facebook last night and then I invited friends here in Makati to join the group page and friends, family and fans to like the company page.  I also launched my boot camps, two of them, and within an hour of putting them out there half of the spots for those wanting to participant in them were filled up.

Another thing I have to own though is the new pink hair I'm rocking.

I already have a pretty memorable look -- hello, I'm a foreign pro fighter sporting half a shaved head, platinum blond hair and tattoos -- but I wanted to switch things up a bit, make it a bit stronger.  It was suggested I try temporary hair dye... pink or purple.  In Korea, it seems like every ajjuma (middle aged woman) wears purple.  They also cut their hair and perm it.  It's like a sign of being middle aged and married.  I was married in Korea and I'm no spring chicken anymore so cutting my hair was already putting me close to being in that group and sporting the "ajjuma look".  Of course I took my short hair a step further and shaved half my head, totally not an ajjuma thing to do.  I got tats and bleached my hair even lighter.  I refuse to wear purple though.  The Korean ajjumas killed that colour for me so dying my hair purple wasn't going to be something I was ever going to try.  Instead, I went for pink.

I really had no expectation with how it'd look when I went to the hair salon today.  I know the salon owner and she did my hair.  She's a friend of mine and I know she's got mad skills so I wasn't nervous about that.  I just didn't know if I'd look good with the colour. 

Colour completed.  It was now time for me to leave.

Honestly, I liked the colour but how I felt sporting that colour was something I was totally not expecting.  Almost instantly upon leaving her hair salon, I felt like I was back in Korea and all the looks I was getting were instantly regarded in my head as negative looks.  

Korea had made me to feel ugly and incredibly insecure hence why I always stayed at my boxing club.  My security and confidence only stretched as far as the walls in my club did.  Outside of the club I was totally out of my comfort zone.  I think the only real place I felt comfortable outside of my boxing club in Korea was at boxing events because there the fighters, coaches, refs, and the crowd knew of me.  They all knew I was a pro boxer and owner of Korea's largest boxing club so I was respected and treated as an admired athlete.  Away from boxing though, both outside of the club and away from any boxing event, I felt like a circus freak.  The stares I got, the pointing fingers, the turning heads, and all the giggles.  Sure many of them could have been just curious people looking at me or even random strangers recognizing me but in my head I had been centred out way too much to see it as anything but negative feedback.  

I know I don't live in Korea anymore, I live in the Philippines, and Filipinos are absolutely nothing like Koreans except for their love for food and family but that's about it.  I know this but it's still hard to disconnect myself from it.  I lived in Korea for eleven and a half years and the damage that was done will take some time to get over.  I have a love hate relationship with that country, with Korea, and today I was bitter towards it knowing that it's because of Korea that I went from being this confident woman to shy and quiet with just the change of my hair colour.  

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