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Layout by: Lovely Designs
Artwork by: Akemi Takada
Buttons by: Fool Lovers

I'm in a good mood tonight, and I'm trying to savor the feeling of the clouds disappearing in my head for a brief moment. I have my Migi shirt and my skincare mask on after a DDR session followed by a nice, hot shower. I'm trying to take the little joys in taking care of myself... I'm still having difficulty with general anxiety and a fear surrounding food, but I've accepted that's just how things are going to be for now. My grandpa's birthday passed! I wish I could give him way more because he really deserves it and it still feels like he takes care of me more than the other way around. Actually, sometime in July he finally realized he forgot my birthday and tried to make it up to me, it was really sweet of him even though I don't mind if he forgets.

I love him so much!!

I made a page for October's diary today! Even though I'm not sure if I'll use it very much, but I wanted to get into the Halloween spirit at least a little. I'm living vicariously through my friends who have wonderfully decorated living rooms for the season. I want to try toasted pumpkin seeds!!

Yesterday I got a few chapters into The Last Unicorn: The Lost Journey. It's kind of crazy how wildly different it is! Some parts are the same but it's a completely different tale so far. I'm enjoying it, but I'm really glad Beagle changed everything because it feels much less like the unicorn's story this way. I'm looking forward to reading more of it! Oh, and here are some things on pre-order for me:

The Creamy Stick!! I believe this one plays music? I'm SO happy to have the opportunity to get a replica of it at a reasonable price instead of the old one that costs hundreds of dollars on the aftermarket, although I think this one might be a little smaller which is fine. Now I'm just hoping they do the Lumina Star too!

From Ojamajo Doremi! I actually haven't seen the show yet besides the infamous 4Kids dub when it was airing, but I remember I wanted one of these so bad!! I plan to watch the show before it releases, I already know I'll love it.

Finally, this adorable minecraft-esque Chris plush. It seems Capcom made a whole line of them? The Dante and Phoenix Wright are really cute too! Where's Jill? I was disappointed at first because the pre-orders for Chris were sold out, but I checked again today and he was available again!! Now if only I can snag a Leon for Bear...

Oh, I got a gift the other day!! It's Iris by Pom. ISN'T SHE CUTE?! I really need to build her page, it's been neglected for so long!! And I'll definitely include a gallery of all the art I've gotten/commissioned from others, they're too lovely to not share!

The heat drags on, much like this year. The high today is supposed to be over 100. I know I shouldn't be surprised because I've lived here all my life, but I don't remember it being THIS hot when I was a kid, back when I actually loved Summer and the warmth and sunshine. The streak of misfortune continues, but I don't really want to talk about that. I've pushed back any goals I have in favor of one objective, to survive. Simply make it through the day as best as you can and do it all over again tomorrow, since I feel so immobilized at the moment. I've noticed that nearly everyone I know is also struggling collectively and it both saddens and gives me some perspective. I think when you're feeling really low, it can help a lot to shift your focus away from yourself and to others.

My co-worker bought me some supplies at Daiso!! I love them and will most definitely be using them soon. Does anyone else prefer bigger washi tapes? The small ones are kind of useless!

I also got a surprise package from a friend!! She is seriously so sweet... Kitty is a side-stepper!! Her little dance is such a delight, and I'm very excited to try the face masks!! I can't remember the last time I tried one. I can't wait to read the book either!! I may have just finished The Last Unicorn for the 50th time, but I love the idea of a rough draft being published and am so curious to see how different it is from the final novel. Speaking of The Last Unicorn, I actually bought a book the other day and already finished it:

This features two stories from the world of TLU, a direct sequel called Two Hearts and another story called Sooz. Two Hearts is about a young girl named Sooz who embarks on a journey to seek help from King Lir after a fierce griffin begins eating children from her village. Along the way she meets Molly Grue (my favorite!!) and Schmendrick who take her to the castle. Unfortunately by this time, Lir is an old, senile man who often loses himself and is only brought back through mentions of his beloved Amalthea. I won't say more than that, but I really enjoyed it and it made me feel even more melancholic than the original story.

As expected, Sooz is a direct sequel to that story, involving all new characters, set on Sooz's 17th birthday. I think most fans would be disappointed by the fact that the old characters never show up except in name, and I wasn't terribly interested in Sooz herself as a character but I went along on her journey to find her lost sister Jenia, who was stolen by faeries before Sooz was born nonetheless. Ultimately, I found the story kind of weirdly paced and felt like the journey Sooz took was kind of pointless? Maybe just because I didn't like Jenia very much. Who I did love was Dakhoun, the rock girl Sooz befriends by accidentally stabbing her the same night Sooz was assaulted. Like Sooz, Dakhoun is on a journey as well, but to find Death, who keeps eluding her and delaying her destiny. I wonder if I could paint her the same way I pictured her in my head... Anyway, their relationship really touched me. Yes, I cried. I cry nearly everyday now.

That same day I bought the book, Bear and I went to get some snacks!! Rice crackers, onigiri (sukiyaki filled?!), and spam musubi... it was all delicious. Any day we spend together is a good day. Oh, and we watched the Miraculous Ladybug movie!! It was very cute and I enjoyed it a lot. Some people seem to be upset by the animation...? That it's too "Disneyfied" which I can see, but I also think anyone will have that connection when it comes to 3D animation. I really liked the upgraded character designs. Adrien was cute and angsty like a real teenage boy, heh. Another complaint people had was that it's an AU origin which is in no way connected to the main story, but I thought it was a fun "what if" scenario with a lot of beautiful visuals. My only complaint other than a plot hole I don't really care about is that I wanted to see Luka more!!

I still remember the cold, sweet smell of her birthday cake. It smelled delicious. I was too afraid to have any.

I went out at dusk today. It's still hot, but it was windy which made leaves cascade down like a petal shower. It was really beautiful. I stood there for a while watching the clouds cover and uncover the portal to heaven until it was almost dark. The wind was whipping my hair and my dress and it felt nice, I can't wait for it to get cooler. It's starting to get darker earlier and usually I would be really happy about that, but I don't feel like myself anymore... I'm afraid to eat half of my favorite foods and don't have the same appetite I used to, I experience random waves of panic, and I get stinging pains in the problem areas which signals to me that my body is still dealing with whatever is going on inside. I don't know if I will ever be myself again, and I'm trying to accept it, though I still hope one day this will have just been a weird transitionary period of my life. It really helps me when people tell me about their hellish experiences and how they got through them, and I'm grateful to everyone who has shared their story with me. I know I'm being so dramatic, but I've never had to deal with a physical ailment like this before, which I now realize was very lucky.

My mom had her surgery yesterday. I was upset no one told me, but I just hope her recovery is quick and that she doesn't have to deal with her pain anymore. She let grandpa borrow her car, which was nice because his broke down weeks ago, and there is very little chance of fixing it and there is no way for us to afford a new one right now. When it rains, it pours, doesn't it?

The other night Bear came over and we opened some Pokémon cards together. He got the Klara Tournament Collection and while he doesn't play, it's fun every once in a while to do some pulls, isn't it? I got a Victini that he happily handed over to me!

We started re-watching Space Dandy recently! I can't believe the anime is going to be 10 next year. It was fun to look forward to a new episode every week and I really miss it... I love the episode where he has to surf away from danger!! He is sooo handsome and I can't help but fangirl whenever I see his hair come down. You dork!!

This figure has been on my wishlist for so long now! I'm not really willing to pay that $300 aftermarket price though so I've pretty much given up the thought of ever owning him. Please re-release him for the 10th anniversary!!

A surprise for me came in the mail! This was my biggest order all year and I'm glad I didn't have to cancel it because I thought I might have to. Bear is going to help me build my bedframe so I can start properly cleaning my room and rehauling my storage, but I'm definitely looking forward to making new displays the most! Sadly I think I am going to have to weed out some of my collection as I simply don't have space for everyone and there's no way we're going to be moving anytime soon. Oh, and Bear got a new figure too!

She's so cute!! We like to watch Miraculous Ladybug together and I think he likes it more than I do honestly... I can't wait for us to be able to watch the movie. I love Luka and Cat Noir!!

I'm trying my best to get back into work and settle into doing things regularly again. I can't stay stuck in bed since I have responsibilities and things to manage and upkeep... I managed to finish a commission and the other just needs to be colored which will be done in morning light. Somehow, I think traditional commissions are less stress for me because of the limitations and because they physically leave my hand. Since my hours got so severely cut at work, I'll probably have to try to open them, but that's alright with me.

I put off those commissions for a while but in the end, I always feel better after I draw even if it's a subject I don't care for. Speaking of commissions, I received this one and it made me so happy that I was able to get out of bed and clean the house!! Though I don't have long hair anymore... I wonder what Travis would think of it? Would he think my short hair is cute too? I'm starting to amass a collection of Travis art that was drawn just for me... There are some that are recent, like the BEAUTIFUL pieces I recevied from a friend (I promise I'm going to make it up to you and return the favor!) and another recent commission of Travis holding a bouquet for me. I have some gift art and commissions from a decade ago too!! I really need to print them all out, and make a collage. I'm glad I've had the courage this year to ask for self-ship commissions.

Happy Splatfest! I'm on Shiver's team, but I wouldn't mind if Big Man won either. It's not that I don't like Frye, because I do, but some of her fans can be a little... obnoxious. I really want to win a 100x battle, just once! I've never gotten the cute little banner above my name and so far I'm only at 4 10x battles won. It's still too early to tell. Maybe I'll get lucky? It's funny, Splatoon can be so infuriating to play but it's really helped me the past few months and gave me something to look forward to daily even when I was feeling very ill.

The other night I went to visit the page of an artist I loved again. Her name is Qinni and she passed away from cancer right before the pandemic hit worldwide in 2020. Looking back through her archives, and seeing how much pain and suffering she went through the last five years of her life is really heartbreaking. I'm glad that she chronicled as much as she could and shared it with us, and I hope she is resting peacefully.

Two of my favorite pieces by her, "Secrets of the Cosmos" and "Birdcage". She used a lot of space/galactic/star themes in her pieces and that's something I love to put in my artwork as well. You can view more of her artwork on her Instagram!

A common sentiment with other artists is that we create because we want to leave something when we die, and I'm the same way too. But deep down I know it's useless. I remember reading my Science textbook in elementary school about how one day Earth will be swallowed by the sun after it burns out and turns into a black hole. It terrified me and made me think about how everything humans have done will have been for nothing and not a single trace of us existing will be left. Silly me! We'll be long gone way before that happens anyway. In my current despair I realized I've been struggling with poor mental health for over two thirds of my life now... My brain is probably permanently stunted and shriveled up from living like this for so long, heh.

A woman at work told me that I'm alive because someone loves me. I half expected her to follow up with "Jesus!" but she didn't. Even though I thanked her for the sentiment, I don't believe it. Beautiful and beloved people die in unfair and horrific ways everyday, and wickedness seems to persist the longest of all. The cruelty and absurdity of the world is too much to bear and trying to make sense of it will only drive you insane. I'm really struggling right now. I'll try to draw and play more Splatoon to calm myself down.

Artwork by Dalton Doodles

I was able to get some stuff done for my shop today, but I still have a couple of commissions to do. They should be fairly easy to do, but I hate having to mail commissions out. That's what I get for taking more commissions than I thought I could finish at the con. Next time I'm raising my prices again!

My co-worker is sick again and I felt bad because I used to always be the one who could cover for everyone and I can't do that anymore. Thankfully she found someone to take it. I'm actually so unsatisfied with my job. I've been working there for 4 years now, and it's a laid back and easy job, but as I get older I'd like something with more security. My bosses implemented a new rule today that pissed me off. They've been slowly becoming stricter and stricter and I don't appreciate the boiling frog treatment. Maybe I'll finally try to save money to become an esthetician since I did always want to specialize in waxing. It's funny how I thought I had wasted my life at 19, but now I really did screw myself over by hardly growing in a decade.

My test results from the hospital are becoming more and more confusing to me. I know worrying does no good, but I can't help myself. I'm not even sure what I'm worried about anymore, my brain just always jumps to extremes for no reason at all... Oh! I forgot, on Friday night, Bear took me back home to print more stickers for the con. I happened to catch the moon on our drive! It was giant and RED, and so so gorgeous! Bear didn't like it and said it looked ominous. It reminded me of the moon I saw on my flight back home from Japan in 2019. When we arrived back to the hotel, I ran to my friends and told them to look, but sadly it had already passed. I said "Maybe it really was an omen for more bad times ahead" and Bear told me "Yeah, and they'll pass, just like the color of the moon did". I hope he's right. I really love stargazing. My favorite constellation is Orion, and everytime I see him I feel comforted. I hope I can see him tonight.

One day we will all return to stardust~

It's September, but it's still way too hot! I'm eagerly awaiting for at least the mornings and evenings to cool down so I can take walks again. August wasn't too eventful, but here are a few things that happened:
  • Found out I'm vitamin D deficient and got prescribed a supplement for it. I think most people these days have this deficiency honestly.

  • Saw Porco Rosso for the first time! I need to see more of the lesser seen Ghibli films. I really enjoyed it!

  • Went swimming!! It was the only time I got to go swimming all Summer and despite the abundance of rowdy kids, I really enjoyed myself. There's only two good things about Summer, swimming and snowcones.

  • Saw Blue Beetle! I liked it a lot better than other recent DC films I've seen. It was also a treat to see George Lopez on the big screen, his stand-up comedy was a staple in my house growing up.

  • Re-read The Last Unicorn again. It's really become my go-to comfort book. I wanted to re-read Howl's Moving Castle at first but I couldn't find it anywhere. My copy of TLU is signed by Peter S. Beagle and every time I see his signature it takes me back to the screening tour I attended in 2015. Take me back!

  • Coraline was having a special showing in theaters so we went. I remember seeing it back in 2009 too when it first released with my mom and my cousin... I was in the 9th grade then! I'm a huge Laika fan so I was happy to re-watch it on the big screen. Now I just need to re-read the book!

  • Chopped off my hair to just above my shoulders again. It was too hot and I wasn't doing anything with it except throwing it into a ponytail. I felt pampered getting my hair washed, but the girl doing my hair took so long to comb through it that I was getting restless. I could have gotten the tangles out for you in a quarter of the time! Everyone said it looks nice, and Bear especially said it looks cute on me.

My strawberry garland from Seamii arrived! I haven't worn lolita in months so I've been refraining from buying anything, but I couldn't pass this up. It's so cute and is a perfect addition to my wardrobe! I hope I can wear lolita again soon.

Con haul! This is actually smaller than my usual haul from this con, but I knew I needed to save my profits for bills so I held back. I was SO excited about the Dandy charm!! You never see Dandy merch! I ran over to buy him first thing in the morning before even opening up my table. The Gungrave box set, Mami easels, and CCS bottle opener were all gifts. The con went well and I broke my record for profit despite having to leave early on Friday and Saturday. I do wonder how much money I missed out on... but my body needed to rest. After the con we all went out for Korean BBQ. Delicious!

As for my health... I obviously don't want to go too much into detail but I'm still having issues. The normal doctors have basically given up on me and referred me to a specialist. I keep getting chewed up and spit out by our system and it's incredibly frustrating. Since I had no need to see a doctor for nearly 15 years, I was navigating through blindly and wasted a lot of time and money. I guess I should count my blessings, like still being able-bodied and for all of the help I've received along the way, but I'm still not coping well despite being better equipped to handle things now. This isn't how I wanted to spend the final year of my 20s!

For September, my goal is to deep clean my room and re-do my shelves. Everyone desperately needs to be dusted and re-posed. Maybe I'll chronicle my progress here! I also got my hours cut at work due to my health issues... but it'll be for the best and hopefully I can get by with my art for now. I'll try to keep going. It's the only thing I can do.