Well who thought I would ever be writing a third one of these? Don’t be shy, raise your hands. No one huh? Yeah… Me neither. But here I am, and I couldn’t be happier!
I won’t lie, this year has been rough. Blog wise it’s probably been the most difficult year yet, by far. Not to mention a few personal events that really took it out of me. I dislike sharing pain, so I won’t. Our community has been struck with scandals and absolute tragedies all around, there’s not need to add to it. Otherwise work has been just unreasonably busy for most of the year and I haven’t been able to concentrate on much else. I’m trying hard to get back to a better balance and I will!!!
This said, it’s been a year of 10 to 14 hour workdays 6 or 7 days a week and getting home too exhausted to even watch anime, let alone write anything worth while. I had to scale back my blogging presence a few times. But you know what, it’s the thought times that teach you the most. I can sit here and honestly say I learned so much this year and I would never trade that for a few extra hours of sleep! And this part, I am happy to share with you!
Every year I write these posts as a general thank you to the anime blogging community. I have always meant them. This year, I saw a lot of my good friends from this community sort of move on and we haven’t talked much since. In fact, I myself haven’t really had the time for online chats and blogger discussions like I use to have over twitter group chat or discord. I don’t know what it says about me that I am surprised by how much I miss them.
Don’t get me wrong, I was always happy to have these social outlets for my geeky side but I also figured it wouldn’t be a big deal if they went way. I mean I never had them before and I was never that active in them when I did have them. I was wrong. I miss having even just a few folks to mindlessly chat about anime with once in a while. I will definitely make more time for it next year. It means more to me than I thought.
We saw a few great bloggers leave the platform again this year. I counted a number as my friends, maybe you did as well. It’s been quieter since they left. Not only because we don’t speak as much anymore. I do still chat with some now and then, but a lot of them were our community organizers. They got projects going and brought bloggers together. They tried out a lot of things by themselves as well. They made some noise around here and for better or worse, they kept things lively. It’s nice when the commotion isn’t a rant once in a while.
I also made a lot more episode posts this year which are great for views but not so much for comments. It’s a tradeoff that I’m still trying to figure out. I’m going to keep them up for another year at least because I enjoy the variety but that means getting interaction elsewhere.
what I’m saying is that I realized that the community I had always admired had seeped into me a little deeper than I thought and the changes were affecting me in unexpected ways. That’s incredible. And it’s up to me to give back. I can no longer sit back and admire, somewhere along the line I became part of it. If I think it’s quiet, I should make some noise, if I want a silly project I should start one. And I will… you know… soonish..
The other thing I realized through sad times and stress and strain, is that I still love anime. I really do. It still lifts my spirits and stirs my mind. I still get excited at the mear thought of watching the next episode of a show I’m enjoying and it still fills my imagination with crazy ideas and interesting debates which I really think is helping my intellect stay more flexible and alert than it would be otherwise.
And that’s also because of you. You specifically that are reading this right now and you whoever you are that have ever taken the time to like or respond to anything I have ever written. Even if you didn’t like it at all. It’s through this blog and the interactions it has created that I have had my mind open to so many questions I would never have considered on my own. It’s thanks to you that what could have been a mindless distraction remains an engaging and stimulating passion. That’s something I will always be grateful for, even if work finally eats me and I no longer have the time for this blog.
In 2019 I went through things I did not want to experience. Things I had gone through in the past and I knew I would get through again. I knew I would be alright, I knew time would eventually heal all. But there was the hard times to get through first. I know you guys have all been through your own struggles so you know what I’m talking about. For those of you still struggling, hang in there.
There are brighter days just around the corner.
In 2019 I discovered that I am rich beyond expectations. I have boundless fictional worlds to explore, brimming with colours and dripping with dreams. Unthethered by reality or even logic at times and all patiently waiting for me to grace them with a bit of attention. For 20 or so minutes at a time, entire universes exist only for me!
In 2019 I found that that I am lucky to live in a time and place where an entire digital community who owes me nothing at all will gently remind me that I am not alone in days when I need it most. Will tirelessly teach me new things, encourage me and help me get better without asking for anything in return. And if I just try a little, I can do that for someone too. Both are precious gifts.
In 2019 I was reminded that I can bring my fortunes together and make them even greater. That I can share those imaginary realms with real people to make them shine a bit brighter. That I can scatter a bit of my experience over the electronic world so someone else can come along, maybe when they need a little break.
In 2019 I drank and watched anime and remembered that I needed to thank you all for making it so much fun! Thank you so much. You made the good times great and the worst times better. Here’s to 2020! May it be better than last year and a little worse than next.