2012 in Review

I know this is really late, but, you know. I wasn’t updating my blogs until I made a new one. Which would be this one. It’s already the second month of 2013, but do you know what? I do not care. I should review 2012 anyway.

Part 1: Goals

According to this former post of mine, my goals were to finish my two Japanese textbooks, to improve on my writing, and to sew everything I’ve been meaning to sew. Oh, ho, ho, ho!

….

I failed. The writing and the sewing got completely scrapped, arguably replaced by artwork. For Japanese, I actually managed to get about 3 lessons into the second textbook before the year ended.

It’s not like I didn’t do any writing or sewing in 2012 – I did. I wrote a few episodes of Kelly’s Journey and I sewed like…two tiny bags for carrying some crystals and pendulums in. Of course, these aren’t enough to warrant improvements or completing things. I meant to sew a shirt during 2012, which kept getting delayed out of laziness.

My goals for 2012 had eventually become (in the most generic terms) Japanese and artwork. I wanted to do other things too – like work on my website – but nothing ever actually happened, or not really enough to even make a slight dent.

For Japanese – which has some extended goal information here – was actually pretty decent for the first half of the year. Depression and occasional disinterest lead me to put it off every few weeks while I was working through the first textbook, but I managed to finish it in June. This was huge for me simply because 1.) I finished my textbook so I could reward myself with a video game I had since the previous year and 2.) I knew more Japanese than I’ve ever known. I think a month or two later I started to actively talk to Japanese people on Twitter and I found I no longer felt anxious or scared trying to type to them. I actually had a better grasp on what to say. It was pretty dang amazing! I started on the next textbook, but my goals had to be changed and Japanese had to, unfortunately, be put on hold once again for things that needed priority.

Artwork was something that was more or less carried over from 2011. You see, I had this huge stack of artwork I wanted to colour and for once, I actually wanted to colour them. Usually I’ll draw a ton of sketches and say something like “YEAH, I’M SO COLOURING THIS LATER!”, but then I never do because I get distracted by another artwork or something else. I’ve also spent every year since 2009 doing artwork for other people and I wanted 2012 to be different. Unfortunately for me, it wasn’t. While I did manage to line every image I chose to colour and actually began the colouring (everything but last minute editions and line files I forgot existed had base colour and most had shadows applied), most of the images haven’t gone public yet. They’re sitting in my file folder, waiting to fully completed. Some are actually completed, sitting in my Sta.sh on deviantART! Most of the finished artwork from this year that went public were for other people – primarily commissions. It was actually because of commissions I had to put pretty much everything I wanted to do and was doing on hold. I kept getting sick (presumably from stress), so I ended up accumulating 19 commissions between the end of July and August, finishing them by mid-December.

For writing, I only worked on Kelly’s Journey this year, powering through episodes…16 to 18, I believe? Well, I powered through 16 and 17, then took my time writing 18, finishing it before the year ended. I wanted to finish episodes 19 and 20 as well, but my motivation fell through. I can’t tell if it’s just that I don’t have motivation or if my brain is recognizing that I have other priorities.

Part 2: Lessons

I’m not talking about Japanese lessons, but rather, things I learned this year. There were a few things that I learned this year that I need to keep in mind.

Artwork:
– When it comes to commissions, limit how many you take at a time! I know you don’t get much, but still! You ended up with SEVETEEN commissions from one person in a MONTH. We don’t want that again;
– Definitely better to “assembly line” many artworks at a time than do one at a time

Japanese:
– Reading the lessons a few times definitely helps me retain more;
– Using Anki for pre-learning study ALSO helps me retain more;
– Notetaking, on the other hand, doesn’t really; actually using it does;
– I will, inevitably, need to take time off from learning it every so often for one reason or another;

Goal Making:
– STOP MAKING SO MANY GOALS. Well, make them, but them pick and choose TWO. You can only handle two. Two a month. Any two. Just pick two. Two. Two.

Part 3: Life Review

The beginning of the year to the middle of it was the worst. It started out pretty bumpy, but hanging out with two of my long time friends, Ryan and Tom, quite a bit (which started towards the end of 2011) helped. Sometimes they were the ones who helped hold up my spirits that crashed after they left. They’re also (one more than the other) a contributing factor to my depression and stress level during the summer months and almost into fall (or rather, life happened), as contact became scarce to none.

I became so sick of sitting at home, in my room that I didn’t like. It wasn’t my room. It was the guest room, painted an ugly powder blue. The computer was getting boring. I had stuff I wanted to do, but I wanted to go out and breath in the fresh air. I started going out more because of this. I went to NYC several times and ended up running off to Salem for a day. In the months where I wasn’t hanging out with a friend almost everyday, I became depressed and happy when someone invited me somewhere (please, offline friends, invite me places! Even if you think I won’t go!). One of my highlights was going to the Marina & the Diamonds concert with Steve. It felt good to see a friend who I hadn’t seen for a while.

I still struggled with depression and I guess to an extent, loneliness well into fall. I think the universe knew I needed a friend to hang out with, because I met Courtney via some of our mutual online friends. We found out we lived close to each other (and by close, I mean about an hour and a half away), so we hung out and begun to hang out frequently. It was definitely something I needed!

The end of the year also picked up with my room being painted amethyst purple, finishing Kelly’s Journey episode 18, finishing up a short comic related to Kelly’s Journey, posting episode 15, finishing commissions earlier than I anticipated, drawing a few last minute pictures, Pokémon introducing one of my most recent favourite characters to ever appear in the series, and having the best Christmas in a loooong time.

Part 4: Overall

I guess in retrospect, it was mostly a good year. While, yes, I didn’t complete most of my goals, I did get through some of the smaller ones: finishing Genki I (textbook), writing 3 or 4 Kelly’s Journey episodes, finishing up a Kelly’s Journey comic, finishing all my commissions. I’m sure there’s more, but my brain doesn’t feel like recalling the memories. Overall, it was good for what I managed to achieve.

I think the hardest part of this year was the lack of socialization or rather how I strongly desire hanging out with specific people and then those specific people weren’t available.

I miss my friends.

I wonder if they miss me.