Category Archives: ๐Ÿ““ Ramblings ๐Ÿ““

I No Longer Identify As A “Little” ๐Ÿงธ (I’m Still Me!)

Scary title is scary! Well, not really. It’s nowhere as bad as it sounds, so please read on before commenting. ๐Ÿ˜…

Recently I’ve made kind of a big change across all of my online presences. You probably didn’t notice, and that is why I am making a post about it.

I want to precede this by clarifying that nothing has changed about me as a person, or the activities I enjoy, how I like to dress, or the people I consider my friends, the sort of events I may choose to attend at cons, the art I like to draw (on both of my accounts), my fursona or her age, the dynamic in my relationships, none of that has changed. Nothing has changed in practical terms. I want to make this super clear, this is a personal change in how I describe myself and not one that will affect any of my commissioners or the joy I get from drawing the usual topics, or my comfort with said topics. Everything is okay.

What has changed is that I no longer will be using any community labels other than “furry”. And I do mean none: I no longer call myself a “Little”, the last label I felt comfortable using after hopping between labels over the years.

There’s a lot of reasons, but one of which is that I am seeing so much label-infighting across all of these subcommunities, that I feel like I’m just getting a bit too old for the label thing. I also feel that not having this label will allow me to expand a bit as an artist and have more wide appeal.

Consistently checking if the word I’m currently using to describe my headspace is in someone’s DNI is stressful. Changing labels because the latest label has become toxic, or its meaning twisted into something bad or co-opted by people who added a meaning to it that doesn’t resonate with me, is stressful. Having wild assumptions made about me based on a single word descriptor is tiring, it is reductive, sometimes violating depending on the assumption, and I cannot change what tons of outsiders think or do. I can either choose to not let it bother me, or make a change so it is a non-issue. The former doesn’t work for me, so I am doing the latter.

I suppose another reason is that the amount of drawn borderline CP I am exposed to daily on Twitter has grown, I feel it is becoming more prevalent in the community, and it makes me want to distance myself from any community terms.

Going forward, I’m just a colorful furry and fantasy artist whose inner child is pretty close to the surface all the time. To that end, I’ve reworded a ton of posts on my blog, and now I’m using mainstream words to describe my childlike headspaces and activities. If I find any I missed I will continue to adjust accordingly.

I hesitated as to whether make this journal at all, but I felt I should because I do not want to be described as a Little anymore. This is very literal, meaning, you do not have to change how you treat me otherwise or any playful teasing you may have felt comfortable doing if we are friends. I am still 100% me. I still love my friends. I still engage in the same kiddy activities. I am just putting the label aside. It no longer makes my life happier or easier to describe myself this way online.

Hope that makes sense. Thank you for reading!

Can’t Fix It

Lately I am not doing so well. It’s rare that I do proper vent art, it feels so wasteful and selfish, especially right now. Both for economic/time reasons and because anything that puts my own feelings into focus really seems terrible and makes me want to punch myself in the face. I considered making this post private, even (I certainly have posted vents privately before and never published them) but, I don’t want to feel so alone.

I’m a very emotional person, but on the other hand, I’m very solution-driven. I guess I was raised with a mentality that if you try hard enough you can help any situation or fix any problem that someone may be having, especially if you love them, especially if they have done it for you before. I feel like it’s my responsibility as a supportive friend, or partner. I need to be able to do this, otherwise I have failed in that most important responsibility.

Because of this, many times I have tried to “fix” pain or trauma in friends and loved ones that is not possible for me to fix. I keep trying to do it and feeling awful when I can’t. It’s presumptuous of me to even assume that I could.

And yet, I cannot convince myself that me trying harder, working harder, making more money, making the house nicer, buying fancy gifts, planning fun things, cooking special meals, just, being happier harder, isn’t going to fix it. I’ve been there. I know all of this is pointless, I know how it feels to have people try to force you to feel better. It sucks. The truth is that only patience can help, just, quiet, loving patience, but I am not good at the quiet part, or the patient part.

Standing idly while someone I love suffers, just feels like wilful inaction on my part, like I’m ignoring them, or not caring; it feels like abandonment. How do you stand idly by and continue greeting the day happily if the person who matters most to you can’t?

So, every morning, I try to think of what I can do that day to make things okay as fast as possible, or at least okay for that one day. I can’t accept that I can’t do anything at all, or that I can’t make it all better now. But I think that’s causing more grief than it does help. I understand this on a logical level, but my heart can’t accept it. So I just carry on with my day with an underlying quiet desperation and my brain still trying to come up with a magic solution for things that deep inside, I know only time can fix.

I know that from experience. I’ve been there. But I still can’t help it.

I’m Fine! ๐Ÿ‘

So uuh I guess I hadn’t done a vent in a while, I didn’t mean to worry anyone, I wasn’t expecting to get any DMs about it, I feel kinda bad, though it is so sweet that people do care… yes, the porch thing pisses me off, but funnily enough in spite of what I wrote, making the post did help me.

I decided that I’m going to trash a lot of the stuff that looks bad and not worry about the porch as much beyond keeping it clean. And I’ve been taking care of a lot of things I put off and got back on track with my eating and exercise.

Sometimes you just need a good vent, but I didn’t mean to worry anyone, I’ll cheer myself up and do what needs doing, I always do, so please no one worry, ok? ๐Ÿฅฐ But I’m deeply grateful for the concern all the same. I’ll write back when I can.

Thanks guys!

Frustrated Today

[RANT/VENT, feel free to ignore, I just need to let it out.]

Lately I havenโ€™t really been myself. Iโ€™ve been dealing with intensely high โ€œhighsโ€ and on the other hand some pretty deep lows (related to work, chores, the house, and such.) Work has me overwhelmed, the house has me overwhelmed, and on some days, even though it’s true that I have to draw because I need to complete commissions, I will have higher priority things that I should be doing (such as post-citizenship paperwork) yet I keep drawing from the moment I wake up until I go to bed because itโ€™s just easier to draw and lose myself in it, not thinking about other stuff I have to do, or about anything else, really.

Over the last few days, Iโ€™ve been thinking and thinking trying to figure out what has been bothering me by priority level. By and large, it is my “to-do” list. Sometimes itโ€™s really stupid things. I did figure out one of them, the primary one, I suppose.

Our porch is in horrendous shape again. Even when I spent two days cleaning it a few months ago, already multiple things in it were ruined, and that was depressing in its own right, but at least I cleaned the mold off. In this godforsaken state, anything you put outside is ruined by the sun, sometimes within weeks. But it rains so much, you get mold in spite of the sun โ€”because of the humidity.

Last time, I cut myself on a plastic flowerpot that cracked to pieces in my hand due to sun exposure. And right now, in between the dirt and grime and mold, and everything breaking down in front of my eyes, every morning when I see the porch my mood is just kind of fouled for the rest of the day. Itโ€™s incredibly depressing. Itโ€™s so depressing that I donโ€™t want to go out to water my plans and they are dying.

And you might say well, just clean it. And every once in a while I do, which with pressure cleaning and moving of so many things, takes me two days to do. I have to do it by myself. Iโ€™m not very strong nor do I have a lot of stamina. Even though every single time it gets this bad I get so depressed that it affects so much else in my life, it just means I feel even less motivation to do something about it.

If money wasnโ€™t so tight right now, I would just hire someone. Itโ€™s too much for me to do alone (primarily the moving of things, and all the decorative rocks have to be cleaned too) and after doing it alone twice I donโ€™t even want to have anything to do with it. I get this simultaneous anger and hopelessness about the entire stupid thing.

Itโ€™s just a porch, I donโ€™t know why it affects me to this degree. Maybe because seeing it through the windows it ruins the entire house for me. But I know it does affect me. It happened just like this last time too, and I feel so much worse just writing about it, because I donโ€™t want to do it any more than I did before I wrote this, but now I realize how much it has been affecting me, even more than I suspected. I literally start neglecting the rest of the house as a direct result. Itโ€™s a cascading effect.

So yeah. I donโ€™t know. Either I hire someone (canโ€™t, reallyโ€ฆ I havenโ€™t even bought my walking shoes because Iโ€™m so desperate to continue saving money) or at some point I feel so absolutely and utterly miserable that I just do it and waste two days of my life.

I donโ€™t usually feel this much worse after writing a post. Well, at least I know whatโ€™s been eating at me. Itโ€™s not the only thing, but this one is so major compared to the others that itโ€™s kind of hilarious.

Also, some stuff has left me in such an amount of physical pain for freaking days now, that I donโ€™t know what to do with myself, going on my walks sucks ass, walking up and down the stairs sucks ass, it hurts even trying to work or laying down, and Iโ€™m definitely not okay enough to handle the goddamn porch. Like Iโ€™m not actually complaining (much) but fuck.

Shit! Iโ€™m so cranky. Iโ€™m sorry. I donโ€™t usually swear so much. I have multiple happy posts in my drafts that I havenโ€™t worked on because Iโ€™ve been so miserable and just trying to keep it to myself for days. I’ve been neglecting friends, too. I thought I was doing well enough and instead I just vomit it all over the blog.

Maybe I will clean the damn thing. Canโ€™t very well stay like this, itโ€™s not good for me, but I just get so angry about it. I hate it. I’m in pain. I don’t want to do it. When I think of doing it I fucking hate my life. Stupid ass porch!!

Another Thing… ๐Ÿ˜–

I really enjoyed sharing my scrapbooking tips in the last post, and that, as well as my post from last night, made me realize another bad thing Iโ€™ve been doing for AGES that is justโ€ฆ BAD. You know how I always say that it bothers me when people ask me where I bought something because [INSERT BS EXCUSE]? Wellโ€ฆ

โ€ฆI have always been reluctant to share such things because I want to be unique, because I want to be special. ๐Ÿ˜“ Because Iโ€™m a selfish little twerp. Showing off things without having a willingness to even share where I got them is SO MEAN. What the heck.

To go so far as to put disclaimers about that on my Carrd/blog is so freaking petty, itโ€™s literally like me grabbing a toy and hiding it behind me and going โ€œmine!!!โ€ And โ€”Iโ€™m sorry for that, too, all this time. ๐Ÿ˜ž๐Ÿ’ง

What can I say. I knew why I was doing it, but only now Iโ€™m disgusted enough with myself to change. So please, ask away. If I can, Iโ€™ll tell you where I got stuff. Iโ€™m sorry Iโ€™ve been so mean about that. There was no good reason.

Iโ€™ve removed some of those disclaimers from my spaces (working on the rest) and Iโ€™m going to answer now, if Iโ€™m asked such things. Since Iโ€™m in a contemplative mood, I continue to realize crappy things that Iโ€™ve been doing and I want to change them as I notice them.

Iโ€™m going to be going through my content in general to examine my own tone, so I may edit/private some old blog stuff. Iโ€™ve also deleted a whole bunch of Twitter replies and tweets I made that were mean busybody stuff or just nonsense. Apologies if that is a bit annoying. I’m trying my best to improve as a person. ๐ŸŒˆโœจ

Long Overdue โ€” A Message To All ๐Ÿ’“

Hey everyone. Over the past little while, I’ve been doing some serious self-reflection, and I wanted to share that on this journal.

(If you are missing context/donโ€™t understand some reference to specific events or people, please know that I wonโ€™t go into detail, I simply post it here so I can get as many eyes on this as possible. I am not closing comments to avoid conversation, I posted all of this on Twitter too, and youโ€™re welcome to engage me there if you have something specific to tell me.) ๐Ÿ’•

I don’t want people trying to make me feel better for having been a jerk, because I think that invalidates the feelings of people whom I have hurt. It’s ok, let me own up to my failings. I’m a big girl (sometimes). Please, let me recognize my own poor behavior.

I started off fairly well on my Twitter return, staying away from arguments from the sake of arguments and keeping my nose out of things that were none of my business. This didn’t last too long –even though it harms me emotionally, I fell back into it anyway.

Now it’s one thing when it harms only me, but no one else deserves to be even the mistaken brunt of my ocassional keyboard rage, so easily blasted out into the world, without care for the repercussions.

I didn’t think I had to be reminded of this, but there ARE people on the other side, and these people have feelings and experiences that do not mirror my own.

There are plenty of opinions on the internet, and mine are not special, or witty, or unique, they are just mine. My own noise is not needed. Especially when I cancel out a dialogue before it can even begin.

Going forward, I’m going to try not to post about things that are controversial; if at all possible, I won’t post unhappy things on Twitter or here (maybe on my blog, and then I won’t crosspost them.)

I’ll concentrate on posting art and happy kidcore things on Twitter, and my pets, and above all, I’ll concentrate on being kind, and being quiet if I cannot be kind. This used to be a priority for me, but at some point, I lost track of it.

I’ve told myself a lot “Man, the fandom has become mean/crappy/cliquey/insert word”. Suddenly, I began to feel like I am part of the problem. I am not helping. Perhaps sanitizing my content will make me a little blander, but you guys don’t deserve my negativity or judgmental opinions.

I am going to work towards being a happy and positive energy and if I cannot do that, then I will simply take a break.

Even though Jaq forgave my shitty thread, I could have lost a VERY dear friend. I wanted to make my apology more public after having had a chance to reflect. I realized there probably have been multiple instances of me being a jerk to some degree or other over the past few years, that friends decided to look past because we are friends, even if they were hurt or upset by my words.

Actually there were definitely instances of this. I just fool myself with my own โ€œUwU I like rainbows and teddy bearsโ€ front that I put up with, as if that meant that I canโ€™t actually be horrible to people sometimes. I definitely can.

I also wish I could still apologize to Lucca for not bringing my advice and thoughts to him kindly and in private (or, you know, minding my own damn business) rather than making a journal earlier this year that (while it was well intended) hurt him –but that bridge is burnt.

I’ve prioritized feeling like I’m right, over the feelings of people I care about. Sometimes, it doesn’t matter if I’m right or not, what matters is that someone was hurt. I wish I had not forgotten this. I hope I won’t forget it again.

I also wish that, for all my talk about hating gossip, I had not sometimes gossiped about others using whatever excuse justified it in my head at the time. Just because someone hurt me, no matter how badly, doesn’t mean anyone else wants or needs to hear about it.

If you had to listen to me vent about such –and many of my close friends have– I am, so, so sorry. No matter my grief or trauma, it was a lot to put on you. I’m truly sorry. I wish I had not done it, and I’m grateful that you are still here for me.

I don’t know why it took me so long to take a hard look at my own behavior. I think my opinion of myself has always been a little too high, even in childhood –a paradox when compared to my awful lack of self-esteem (somehow I had both happen simultaneously.) ๐Ÿ™ƒ

Hopefully it’s never too late to try to be better. I don’t think it’ll happen overnight, but I am going to try my best. I’m actually gonna try to do better in regards to my potty mouth as well, I didn’t use to swear all over the place, I’m not sure why I began, but I know it makes me appear much harsher than I used to present myself many years ago.

I just want to be softer, kinder, less of a busybody, less of… whatever I’ve become. Not because I dislike myself (I really don’t) but because I want to be a good energy in the lives of those who choose to include me in it, be it IRL or on FA or Twitter.

Please have patience with me if I fail at times –but it is okay to remind me privately so I can get back on track. Thank you for being there for me.

A Place Where You Belong

At some point in the last two or three years, without my really noticing it, the furry fandom went from being the largest “safe place” I ever belonged to in my life, for the longest period of time, to being a place where I don’t belong at all.

“Without my noticing” isn’t quite accurate, I suppose: I’ve felt “off” for at least two years, likely longer, but still felt like I belonged to some degree. It was still a refuge, it was still where I could be my truest self. I knew my place within it was shifting, but I didn’t notice when the feeling of “belonging” went away completely until yesterday.

I don’t say this with sadness or any sort of despair, I think I’ve definitely felt those things over the past couple of years in regards to my place in these communities, but now that the realization hits me again and with more finality, it’s more of a “I guess this happened, and it’s just how it is, but I’m glad for what I had when I had it”. There is no doubt now though –what I had is gone, and has been a long time, I just tried to pretend it still existed.

Last week, when I made that Twitter follow list and just kinda lurked on the feeds of so many fandom acquaintances, I realized I am 100% not one of them anymore. I could go on and on as to the reasons why, but it would be boring and kinda pointless. It’s just what it is. As more of the stuff I see on Twitter moves to FA, I’ve had to accept it’s not a “Twitter thing”. It’s a fandom thing. It’s changed –I’ve changed. It just doesn’t give me that feeling anymore. I no longer feel “these are my people”; rather, I feel like an impostor among them, perhaps likely to be cast out if I spoke my mind on certain issues.

“Safe places of belonging” have been few in my life, and none can compare to the scope of the furry (and Little) communities. I remember the first such place very well: twice, once when I was 9 or 10 and again when I was 12 or so years old, my parents made it so I could attend the Escuela de Dibujo Garaycochea.

This was an independent art school in Buenos Aires, not very big at all –but the building it was housed in, was. It was an ancient old laboratory building, spacious and full of eerie echoes when you walked. It had two floors dedicated to the school, in an open-plan sort of way. You could see the lower floor from the balcony. Animation classes were held upstairs, while painting, caricaturing, cartooning and other classes were held downstairs. Downstairs is also where the cafeteria was, and a room to watch movies. By the staircase, there was a gigantic (as big as a person) framed photo of Pablo Picasso.

The school taught all ages, from six (or maybe eight) years old to adults, and there was a strong feeling that we were all equal and united in our passion, and we were all taken seriously by one another and our teachers, no matter how young.

Here, I studied cartooning and animation. What I really got out of the school though, was a tremendous sense of belonging. To a child who was always an outcast, a place where there were other kids my age for whom drawing was their reason for being, and where adults took your potential as an artist serious and supported you with the same love and enthusiasm parents would provide, was beyond priceless. It was the first time I felt surrounded by peers who understood me.

Eventually, the school had to move. It moved to a modern, much smaller place. I don’t know why but this ruined it all for me. It was as though the building had a magic to it –after the move, I could not stay. I think I missed the original building so much, that my heartache was a distraction. I did try to attend the classes and just could not get into the swing of things again.

Later, I found a small art atelier led by a single teacher near my house. This would become my next refuge for about a year, and I would feel similarly as I did at the first school. I loved it.

My next “place of belonging” was a single person: my first best friend, Gisela. She and I were friends until I left Argentina. Still –one person does not a “place of belonging” truly make. Rather, we were together in our isolation, in feeling like we belonged nowhere. We both longed for a place where we wouldn’t feel as we did.

It was during the first year of our friendship that we went to see Hercules in theaters together. At the time, I’d firmly locked into the idea of someday living in the USA as my ultimate place where I could belong, be myself, be understood, have friends (spoiler: all of these things did come true here –sometimes the grass is greener on the other side).

Young Hercules’ both hopeful and heartrending “Go The Distance” gripped my heart completely. It became my cringy inward anthem in my own quest to find where I belonged.

Once I came to the USA, I never again felt as completely out of place as I did in Argentina. But it’s a far cry between that, and the feeling of being surrounded by a support network of understanding peers and friends.

I would hop from circle of friends to circle of friends, from anime communities to other art schools and clubs –most of these things would be short-lived, and even the longest-lived one, an anime club I still belong to in some fashion, gave a “finite” feeling of belonging.

Nothing could ever compare to the effect the furry fandom had in my life in this regard, and I doubt if anything will ever come close.

I joined FA (and soon after, officially became a furry) because furry friends from deviantART, particularly Tavi and Ozzie, were showing me tremendous kindness at one of the lowest points in my life. Through them, I discovered a friendly and welcoming community, one that really wanted me among them. I made many friends very quickly and still count some of them as my closest friends almost ten years later.

Thing is, even some of those friends, like me, feel out of place in the fandom nowadays. And to be honest… a big factor in me not attending Megaplex this year, is that feeling. The feeling of no longer fitting in. Whether I ever attend another con will depend on how I manage (or not) to sort out that feeling.

Mind you, it’s not like I’m making some “I’m no longer a furry!! I hate the fandom, I’m weaving!1” ๐Ÿ˜ฉ๐Ÿ˜ฉ๐Ÿ˜ฉ announcement. Because those are so stupid and attention-whory (and that’s coming from me! lol.) That is not what this is. I love the fandom. It’s just that at some point, my feeling of complete, utter isolation, from before I was a furry, returned. I’m not sure when that happened, I just know I won’t be able to fill that void with furry anymore.

But that’s okay. I think it’s highly unlikely that another “place of belonging” won’t find its way to me eventually. Something will come. Until then, I’ll continue to embrace my solitude. It got me through a lot in the past, after all.

Also, for what it’s worth, this is nothing that one or a few friendly/concerned messages can “fix” —please don’t try. This is something much bigger, that a few individual people cannot fix for me and should not attempt to fix. Eventually, I’ll run into a place or community that feels like home again –this one, like most things in life, ran its course, for me (and for many others, from what I see).

But it was a good run. ๐Ÿ™‚ I’m so happy for all the years that it gave me that feeling of belonging. I’m looking forward to what comes next.

You Owe Communication ๐Ÿ”ฅ

Over the last week away from home, I’ve had Twitter on my phone, and because I was so bored, I added everyone to a list that I’d peruse every once in a while, about 100 people.

I saw a lot of BS that it’s not worth my going on a pissy tirade about, but there is one ๐Ÿ”ฅ hot take ๐Ÿ”ฅ of my own that I want to share.

Last 48 hours I’ve seen several tweets about how awful a commissioner is if they dare contact you within a week to a month (!!) from the date of commission purchase. You know what the thing is though? I almost never, EVER see artists say something like “this is your delivery date/deadline and past that date you will get a refund”. The fact that most artists refuse to do this (something that never would fly in a professional, commercial setting) is part of the reason I rarely commission anyone.

Clients are seemingly expected to fork over money and wait for weeks/months without having any idea of what the artists’ queue is like, and if they do, what is the max deadline for their art. God forbid that, after a week or two or a month of radio silence, they ask for progress! ๐Ÿ™„ A simple question, that probably they are already anxious about asking, and shouldn’t have to be.

You know what? I almost never get asked. You know why? Because I provide deadlines. You HAVE to be able to provide a deadline. There seriously isn’t an excuse. Give an unreasonable deadline, if you have to. Five months. A year. Two years. Whatever. Say a date by which you will provide a refund no matter what. In a community where years-long waits are not at all unheard of, if you gave a commissioner zero inkling of what sort of wait might be in store, there is NOT a wrong time for them to reach out to you, because they just don’t know. That’s 100% on you.

Of course, context and tone matter. An “Is my art done yet??” message 48 hours after payment is obviously uncool. An “I was just wondering if you had an update on my commission” two weeks after payment if you provided absolutely no rough estimate of delivery, is polite and more than reasonable, and it is shitty of you not to have provided an estimated deadline in the first place.

A client deserves an estimated deadline from the get-go. No excuses. If you give one, you won’t have the stress of these messages because your client knows what to expect. Don’t leave them in the dark. They don’t deserve that. You’re doing what you love because of them.

I’m not saying it’s bad to give a long deadline if you must… I certainly do, and most of you know three months is my average. If your client is patient and considerate, they will understand that unexpected health issues might cause you to take up to, say, a year, if that is the deadline you must give (and I’m saying that as a kind of ridiculous deadline. If you can’t promise the art within a year, you shouldn’t be taking commissions, because at that point, that’s more like a donation, or an interest-free loan.)

Maybe it’s because I come from a primarily commercial art background, where a missed deadline is a big BIG deal. It’s also stressful –I do furry art because if I go a little bit past my deadlines my commissioners (often friends) are very understanding. To me, bristling at reasonable requests for updates is unbelievable.

You owe communication. You don’t owe speed beyond what you transparently promised on the onset –if you promised nothing, that’s a problem. Art is a business. Is money or goods changing hands in exchange for your art? It’s a business. Someone worked really hard for the money they gave you to receive a product in a realistic timeframe. It pisses me off to see tweets take traction that will make commissioners feel the process is even more unfriendly to them, when sometimes I don’t know how they keep throwing money at artists after getting continually burned by non-delivery or incredibly late deliveries.

Anyway, shitty takes aside, Twitter sucks ass as always, I don’t know how people manage to use it posting so many unhappy and hateful things every single hour lol, I already deleted the app and the follow list I made.

(Still doing my crossposting thing, nothing is changing from how it was before I left for the trip… I’m just stunned at how toxic it became again, once I made a list to follow people. Just. Holy shit. It’s seeping into FA, too. There is no escape, lol.)