This Year 'n the Future

December 14th, 2022

This year's been a rollercoaster, that's for sure. I've figured a lot about myself this year, found a new hobby, but also lost a lot of people I thought were friends along the way. Let's start with the positives though.

The Ups

My recent obsession with VHS really kicked off this year, though it's always kinda been there for me. It's just this year I figured I'd do something about it, and actually got a few VCRs. There's currently 4 in the house, all of which have varying degrees of operability. One is constantly on the edge of not working anymore, then I have one that straight up doesn't work anymore, and the other two seem to work just fine.

Heck, as I'm writing this, I'm using one of my VCRs! Listening to music from it, because yes, I've recorded audio to a VHS tape for the sake of it. I've learned a lot about creating VHS tapes, ranging from putting silly YouTube videos on to tapes, to doing 4:3 pan n scan conversions of films, such as Turning Red and Sonic the Hedgehog 2. I'm also currently tackling the first Sonic movie, and I think I'm halfway done last I worked on it.

Another thing that's been going on this year is more improvements to my artstyle, I'm getting closer to honing in how characters should look like. My character designs have also gotten better, at least I think so.

It's really hard as an artist to convince one's self that their art is good, and to a degree I still struggle with that. But drawing remakes of art I drew the year previously or many years ago helps me visualize the progress I've made.

Also yes as I type this, I'm aware the art section in my website hasn't been updated. It's challenging making a good art gallery, especially with the limited JavaScript knowledge I have, since I basically just stole the pre-existing neocities JS to create this.

Finally, this year has been a great year for self-discovery. This is the first time I'm mentioning this directly in a blog post, and I guess this'll be here for future reference, but I'm a middle age regressor! This basically means I sometimes mentally regress to being a teen again, as a trauma coping mechanism, due to constant abuse I've faced from multiple sources while growing up. I essentially don't have my teen years, so this is my way of reclaiming it.

This has been instrumental in improving my mental health, which is good since factors outside of my control have been pressing down on it hard. If it weren't for this, I'm not confident I'd be typing anything here right now, y'know what I'm saying?

With all this said, I'll go into a mixed bag of self-discovery. If you've followed me for a long while you know this about me already, but again to put this here for the record, I draw cub art, as part of coping with my trauma.

I might eventually make a blog post about this, but generally speaking while this is a gray area, it's undoubtedly been helping me process my trauma in a healthy way. It does this by recontextualizing what happened to me, and softening the impact it has on my psyche.

The wounds left in my soul are still there, but in a way this is a way to not only help me get accustomed to the pain, but to also help me connect with people who share the same trauma as me, or are otherwise accepting of me.

I do get why it's a touchy subject for a lot of people, but I feel like most of what everyone knows about cub and lolicon is misinformation perpetuated by non-CSA survivors, in order to find a group of people to demonize. Again, I might make a blog post on the subject, since I'd love to get something to link to people to explain my rationale.

The Downs

With all that said, this leads into a major down for me. I've lost a whole lot of people who I thought were friends. I knew this might happen, but I didn't expect the hostility I received. It still hurts thinking about it to this day, honestly.

I think I've only ever directly mentioned the names of the people who did this to me once, while the people who cut ties with me kept talking about me, namedropping me, and namecalling me for well over a month, and kept stalking my profile to find my hot takes that they disagree with, just to scream at everyone that I'm an Evil Pedophile or whatever.

What happend was downright humiliating, since people called me a pedophile, accused me of being the reason why there's a problem with trans people being called pedophiles and groomers, and then some of their other friends told me to kill myself. And they still, to this day, refuse to acknowledge the people who did that to me.

If you're wondering, one of the people who told me to kill myself got suspended on Twitter recently, so there's a silver lining there. And one of the people that tried to do a callout on me also got suspended. telling someone else to kill themself! Paints the whole picture of the outlook of these people.

In retrospect, this is a bittersweet thing, since although I'm bitter that I lost a number of friends, I've come to realize who my true friends are. Even the people who aren't completely on board with what I do understand why I do it, and don't go to paint me as an evil no-good child rapist or something to their twitter followers. I'm still thankful for everyone who stuck around with me, and helped me realize who I am. If you're reading this yfywxz, I'm specially thankful for you.

Another thing I'm coming to terms with is my current living conditions, both in my own house and the USA in general. My parents are pretty conservative, my dad especially. My dad outright refuses to call me by the right name, often deadnaming me and misgendering me any chance he gets. But my mom tries her best to call me by the right name and pronouns... just, never in front of my dad.

Throughout this year my parents have plastered hideous pro-trump signs on the lawn, and it made me so uncomfortable to hang out outside that I just stayed in most of the time. Any time the signs got taken down for one reason or another, I feel like I could finally breathe again. Until they put them back up a couple weeks later.

I feel like I could probably talk to my mom about why Trump in particular is awful and queerphobic, but I don't feel like I can comfortably engage in this topic without fear of being kicked out. I was threatened to be kicked out over my messy room, so who knows how upset she could get over me telling her that the ideology she's been following from fox news is wrong and has been harming me.

I do wish I could talk to her about all this, since I genuinely think she's a good person, we often have good conversations and it makes me feel like she also wants to engage with me further. But there's just this huge disconnect that I feel is impossible to overcome without putting myself at serious risk.

Finally, for all the progress I've made in my art, I also feel like I'm slipping. I've had more art pieces this year that I've really disliked than the last, because I feel like I'm rushing myself. My Patreon has contributed to this, because I feel like any time I'm not posting art, I feel like patrons are realizing they're not getting their monies worth and leaving.

Rationally I know this isn't true, since I know many people are just having difficult financial situations. But my stupid brain puts the blame on me slacking off in my art output. So, pieces I planned on spending more time on just get ejected out, regardless of how finished they are. Or, if I don't have any good art ideas, I end up drawing half-assed things because I'm not well-skilled enough to handle the task yet. It's a hugely frustrating process I've run into. I've been drawing arts for 9 years now, and I feel like I'm at a low point in terms of motivation.

I'm currently forcing myself into taking a break from art, as to make sure I don't burn myself out, due to frustration. It's not fun realizing the art you've been making hasn't entirely been done out of fun, love, and intention from the soul. That's my personal goal as an artist, and it's felt like I've been slowly losing grip of this perception :c

The Future

With all that said, I've got stuff to look forward in the future. For one, I know my art skills will increase next year, and I'm hoping I can find some engaging way to sharpen them by tackling art tutorials or something. I've not studied up on anything art-related simply because my ADHD ass brain refuses to let me engage with it. If it's not something I want to entirely do, then my brain shuts down and says we shouldn't do it at all.

Another thing I'm hoping to do is to land a job somehow. It's going to be a pain to do, even with the help I'm being given from a friend to take some courses on promising jobs, but I'm hoping this year I can finally land some stable income. I'd love to actually move out and live on my own, without fear of being kicked out.

I'd also love to further delve into the world of analog video, maybe starting by getting a Beta machine, since that'd be fun. And of course I'm going to be doing more 4:3 pan n scans of movies, whenever the new Mario movie releases digitally, I'm 100% tackling that as soon as I can. Movie does look pretty alright from where I'm standing at the time of... December 14th, hoping the trailers haven't misled me so far lol

And finally, I'd like to expand my horizons somehow. A viable route for me is to take programming more seriously, since thus far I've only done amateur projects that I've only really made for myself. I'd love to make something that other people would like to actually use at some point, y'know?

So, yeah. Lots of ups and downs this year. I'm at least improving from last year, where I ended up hurting people without fully realizing the extent of what I was doing. I'm at the very least in a better state now, and while what I've done is going to continue to haunt me, I'm at least glad I haven't hurt anyone that I'm aware of.

Love y'all. Hope to see you all next year! 💛