a reflection on 2021

so... it’s been a while since i updated this site.
but a new year has ticked around, and so i will follow the trend of yearly reflection.

to be quite honest i...fell into somewhat of a slump last year. no, a lot of a slump. not really the “lay in bed all day depressed“ kind of slump (though this hit at points), but a “no motivation to create or do anything but video games” kind of slump.

i’ll break this reflection into chunks, so i can focus on different topics. naturally viddygame comes first, since it was such a major thing to me.

you hear about video games?

in my 2020 reflection, i wrote about how dire covid had made everything, how jaded i was about the state of everything. i still feel this way. more so than ever, in fact. but..i’m trying to just live with it, like the society i live in is forcing me to.

and around the start of 2021, i discovered a game called omori. this game was everything i thought about for a solid 3 months. a new special interest, my muse for art, theories and aus and thoughts and feelings and love for these silly little characters flooded my everything. the game was bleak but hopeful, the bad endings haunted me for days but the good ending was tender.

it would be fair to say i was coping through it. covid was barely real to me, a neet who barely left the house, who had no real life to ruin by staying inside and thinking about dreamworlds and black space. while sunny was much, much worse than i, the reflection of a hikkineet who’s scared of the outside world and prefers to spend his day thinking about what he held precious.. it was dear to me.

naturally, i sought out fandom. i made a twitter, flooded it with art, and surprisingly it did well number-wise. better than being a furry ever gave me, despite having less followers. the fandom was small, and we were starved, seeking out anyone who would doodle black haired anime boys in tank tops, no matter how artistic or inspired.

omori was a fantastic, wonderful game. but my god, engaging too much with it tore my mental state apart. i started self harming again, i started getting dyphoria again (i’m not trans- i could write an entire page on my feelings about this, but not now), i got into unhealthy friendships. and so... i cut myself off from my interest.

i still dearly love that game. but for my own sake, i don’t think i can stomach obsession with it.

so...i fell into somewhat of a slump. what then, for the autistic out of an interest, for someone who craves bleakness and depressing themes but could not stomach the aftermath?

well. the answer was an mmo addiction.

my best friend had gotten really into final fantasy xiv while i was busy musing about omori. and so, i tried it. my god, the game is fun. no! genuinely! i really recommend it, the story is fun and the content is endless. i have over 1000 hours in it, and i’m sure i’ll have many more yet.

i’d be lying if i said it wasn’t a cope for that slump i mentioned, though.

playing ffxiv is easy. there’s lots of easier things to do when i feel down. and i can make ocs, and they’re just there, in front of me. i don’t have to draw them for them to exist. i can think about my stupid little lalafell and he just exists. i can exist around people, but not have to interact with them. for as scared as i am of others, i craved the ability to be percieved, and this game gave me that ability.

it’s not completely steeped in despair, either. it’s message is that you can help people. while we can’t all save the world, i can be nice to someone, i can do something which helps someone. i can make a positive mark. it doesn’t have to be a lot, it’s okay.

i owe it a lot, even if i’m self-aware that i lean too much on it. i can’t live in eorzia forever. i know this. one of my goals for 2022 is actually to wean myself off it slightly. i want to keep my love for it, but not waste all my days on it.

of course, i do still love depressing media. i can’t help it, i think i’m just inherently drawn to it. but... i’ve been trying to have healthier relationships with it. i played nier:automata later in the year. it’s one of my favourite video games i’ve ever played. tropes i adore, gorgeous scenery, fun gameplay, attractive characters. the world is compelling, and it leaves a lot to think about.

i didn’t let myself think about it too much, though. i refused to let myself get into reading fanfiction or engaging with any kind of fandom... and it didn’t negatively impact me, like i hoped for. i can like this kind of media, as long as i don’t let it consume me. i can let myself obsess over media which is less bleak as filler.

2021 was the year i learnt my boundaries with this kind of fiction. 2022 will hopefully be the year i utilize them.

in 2021, i forgot to charge my apple pencil

last year i wanted to draw more, since i was starting to like my art again.

this year....hahaha, i’m sorry to my past self. i would dare say i have improved a little bit- my anatomy HAS still improved a little, and i find myself better able to improvise said anatomy.

while i was obsessed with omori i did genuinely draw a lot, but once i stopped my motivation kind of died. i’ve doodled a little while i was into ffxiv, mostly weird cringe fetish stuff that i don’t dare show people. but i’ve recently been hit with an urge to draw art that actually matters again. maybe because it’s kind of awkward when family asks how my art is going, and i can’t show them anything because of the contents. maybe i just finally found a spark again.

i’m not sure. but i’ve doodled more than usual this past month, and in december too. i don’t really like how my art looks anymore- maybe i’m just desperate to find something that i like again. i’ll keep doodling until i find something okay again.

i’m not going to completely force myself though- pressure from myself to draw has only made it worse. it makes me resent having to draw. i’m in it for fun, and that’s all. i have no desire to do commissions again. i’m gonna just doodle what makes me happy in 2022. and if i end up with little to show for it... so be it.

the title wasn’t a lie, by the way..... i should probably put it on charge now.

no, YOU live in a society. i live in my bedroom

last year one of my goals was to get a job. hahaha... apologies, past me. to be honest, a large part of me..kind of gave up. it’s demotivating never getting anywhere, and my confidence is on the floor already.

this year...i kind of need to more than ever, with rising electricity and gas prices. i needed to anyway, but it’s so much more dire now. i can’t really leech off society forever, even if my mental state is fragile. i’ll learn to live.

...i’m only looking for part-time right now, though. i think getting a full time job would kill me, having never worked and suffering from bad anxiety. maybe if i can survive part time i’ll look for something full-time.

i applied for cognitive behavioural therapy (i will not say the acronym i will not say the acronym,) a few months back, and i believe i should be looking to get it around february-march. i’m hoping this will help me when it comes to employment. we’ll see! i don’t want to say too much yet, since my experiences as a teenager with cahms..kind of put me off it. but i’m going in with an open mind, hoping that as an adult it’ll be better. we’ll see!

ok cool, but what about the site

if you actually read that wall of text, congrats. i appreciate that you took the time to listen to my musings, especially when i feel like my struggles are so.... first world, haha.

to be honest, part of the reason why i’m so motivated to write this is that i miss doing html stuff. i missed making little websites. i missed the frustration of your alignment not working. i miss accidentally spelling it colour and being confused why something didn’t change.

this place is an online home for me, and it was never forgotten about, even if i didn’t work on it. i love this place i made dearly, and it’s time i dusted the cobwebs from the corners.

i noticed a few issues with my site when looking around it- an image i forgot to self-host being taken down, links in the wrong place or getting repeated. omocat changed the official site, so my description of it is outdated. i have an entire page i *almost* finished but just never did, but it’s something i’m happy with. pages that never left the default template.

after i’ve finished this page, i intend to go back and clean up these little things. maybe i’ll even add more to the site. no promises, but we’ll see. 2021 sapped my motivation to create, but i’m hoping i can hold it just a little longer in 2022. as i stated with the art musings though- i don’t want to force myself. i want to be better first, before i expect anything extra out of myself.

oh, and- if you were one of the people who left guestbook posts i never replied to... thank you so very much. :’] i hold every comment close to my heart. i’ll reply soon, even though the comments have likely been forgotten.

those little goals we all set

so...new years resolutions. most of them aren’t particularly solid, so a lot of them are more...attitudes i’m trying to take into 2022? habits i want to develop? those kinds of thing.

anyway, i’ve mentally had them set for a little while. but let’s write them down:

  • try to visit my family more. specifically, visit my family members at least once a month. they may not be around forever, after all.
  • try to branch out my tastes. try to get into reading manga again, watching anime, playing more video games than just ffxiv. have more to talk about than one mmo.
  • try to nurture my creative side, without forcing myself into doing more. be patient with myself, and don’t expect more from myself than i feel capable of.
  • ideally, get a job.
  • get better with cleaning habits. try not to let dishes pile up and then get depressed about it- put on some music and just do the dishes while i cook. try to force myself to take cups downstairs.
  • try to get back into writing diaries. having a diary is nice, and i love reading back on them. perhaps this site will see a little bit more activity through this!

overall, my goals are just. i want to be better. i’ll likely not be perfect. but i want to take those steps that i have to. i want to reach out and get help. we’ll... we’ll see what i can do.

an afterthought

there’s a post that goes around ffxiv fandom spaces occasionally- about if other people are trying extra hard not to die, since they want to know what happens in the expansion that was about to come out. a comment particularly stood out with the fandom- “hold the handrail, alphinaud needs you”.

in 2022, i’m gonna try to live, and not let my thoughts turn into nihilism and despair for the world. i will try to hold the handrail. alphinaud needs me.