Posted in addiction, day-to-day, out of character, recovery

Off the Wagon

It’s been less than 24 hours since my last login.

I don’t know how I feel about it. I’m still sorting it out.  Embarrassed and ashamed,  I guess. And eager to do it again.

The thing that really hurt me about SL was the time sink. Hours and hours and hours would melt away and feel like 15 minutes. And those hours– hours that could have been spent working or dealing with issues IRL– would be gone, never to return.

So. If I’m going to do this. IF!! If I am going to do this, I need a way to keep track of time. To set a timer, and stick with it. To do the things I have to do FIRST, like pay the bills or arrange the interview or do the chores or finish the commission project or whatever it is I need to be an adult and take care of first.

 

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Posted in day-to-day, out of character, rant, recovery

I Disabled my Twitter for 7 Days

…and decided that 7 is just not long enough.

These days, logging onto Twitter is an anxiety attack. People posting about atrocities. Video automatically playing about said atrocities. Everybody and their grandma needing to weigh in and retweet the atrocities. Hit, after hit, after hit, of horrible things happening in the world today; and a culture of “If you don’t absolutely 100% cosign everything I say here and if you don’t get REALLY OUTRAGED ALL THE TIME, you’re not worthy.”

The best word I can use to describe it is “despair.”

I log onto Twitter, and I despair. Of course I do. I’m an elven being who cares about the world and I want to know what’s happening in it. I see and hear awful things, thrown in my face at the speed of thought. And much of it isn’t even from real people anymore, but from Troll Farmers or else bots fighting to foment chaos and sow discord.

I don’t need to know THAT much about the world around me. I don’t need to hear every single opinion from every single person on it. I don’t even need to weigh in myself.

Oh, and by the way, did I mention the Nazis? Jeez louise.

It could be argued that I’m coming from a place of extreme privilege to be able to shut of my Twitter. That implies that I’m shutting off caring about current events. I’m not stopping caring. I’m not stopping learning. But I am stopping this… this… poison. And I might also argue that having the time to spend on Twitter, and access to electronics to read Twitter, may themselves be a bit of a privilege.

What good am I doing to myself, to my loved ones, to my community, if I’ve numbed by constant anxiety and despair? None. Zero.

So, I unplug. I challenge you to try it for a week yourself and see if you too notice a difference.

Posted in day-to-day, out of character, personal, updates

In this world

I miss the Grid so, so, desperately much right now.

It’s so hard, day after day in this world.

I’m getting by. I’m safe. I’ve got people around me.

But I miss the beautiful Otherworld and its bubble and its magic so much. I miss being Mistletoe so deeply. I want so badly to take a break from this world that words fail me. I’m on the wagon, but fuck, it’s so hard.

Posted in addiction, entertainment, events, Manic Elf, out of character, personal, recovery, RL, updates

I miss you.

So the next Second Life Birthday is in planning stages. 13 already. Damn. Does that mean that this June would be my 10th rez-day?

SLBs are the hardest time of year for me to keep away from SL, because they’re some of the best of what the grid has to offer all in one convenient spot: a font of creativity and genius, without the Lab putting their dirty hands on it. It’s hard not to miss that; I would be lying if I said I didn’t.

And there are people I miss a lot too. I try to keep up on emails, or chatting with them on Facebook or Twitter, but it’s really not as easy to keep that connection without the medium on which you made the connection in the first place. I want to, though. If you see this and haven’t heard from me in a while: I miss you.

I logged on my alts once, about two weeks or so ago, to shake them down for loose change. It was a little, just under a hundred bucks, and is helping us get through a tight spot. The spots are always so tight these days. My job isn’t going so great, but I’m working and trying to further myself in it. I can’t really afford my hobbies (SCA and LARP) anymore, either in money or in time.

I do have a Fiverr gig going on now, though. After playing Undertale (which a friend got me for Xmas) I’ve wanted to live in an 8bit world a while longer, so I fired up RPGMaker and now I make custom video-game greeting cards for five bucks a pop. Nothing too fancy, but cute as hell: a custom sprite of the recipient solves a puzzle, opens a door, and gets a personalized message from the sender. You should have a look! And if you’re on the evil Book of Faces, you should like my page and share the love!

I’m tempted, speaking of Fiverr, of doing machinima videos of firework greetings like I used to do. But that would mean investing myself in SL again and I don’t think I should do that.

Anyway, that’s what’s going on in my world. What’s going on in yours?

Posted in Alts, day-to-day, entertainment, humor, I wrote this, list, out of character, personal

NO PRESSURE!!

Well didn’t I get one hell of a surprise to find myself listed among Suella’s “10 SL Blogs You Should Read“. And not only on the list, but at the top of the list! It’s a very exciting endorsement and my ego is very happy about it.

But with that comes the other side of the coin: “People are reading this thing now! I gotta write something and it better not suck!”

So until I think of what that something that doesn’t suck may be, I’ll give a kind of an introduction to you lovely new folks about who the hell I am and what you can expect when you read my blog.

First: Why I blog in the first place.

I find a picture says a thousand words, don’t you?
Continue reading “NO PRESSURE!!”

Posted in business in SL, day-to-day, out of character, Polls, Shopping!

Your opinion, s’il vous plait

Please note that by “I” I mean all my alts as well.

Posted in atheism, out of character, personal

I don’t exist, and I’m OK with that.

My name is Mistletoe, and I’m an atheist elf.

Why I’m an elf in SL is the shorter thing to explain, so I’ll do it first. Elves are cool. Elves age more slowly and don’t experience illness or pain, according to the stories. In my real life, I live with fibromyalgia and there are days when I feel like I’m three times my actual age; but when I log on, I’m youthful and energetic and can do anything I want. Years, even decades, can go by, and Mistletoe will still be Mistletoe. I would love to be an elf, if such a thing actually existed.

The fact that I know it doesn’t exist, however, doesn’t make the fiction any less magical or enjoyable for me. It’s like knowing how a story ends, but still loving the story.

There are things I sincerely wish I could believe to be true. Elves and faeries being just one such thing. I would love to be able to say that even though I’ve never seen an elf or faerie, even though I’ve never seen any real evidence for elves or faeries that couldn’t just as easily be explained by overtiredness, alcohol, and clumsiness on my part, they are real; but I can’t. The day Legolas knocks on my door and says, “Hi, I heard you didn’t believe I existed, so I thought I’d pop in for some tea,” is the day that I will say, what do you know, I was wrong, elves do exist.

Explain to any child why there’s no such thing as faeries, or ghosts, or the boogeyman, or Santa Claus, and you will have explained why I don’t believe there’s such things as angels, or demons, or Hell, or God. The day God knocks on my door and says, “Hi, I heard you didn’t believe I existed, so I thought I’d pop in for some tea,” is the day I’ll say, hot damn, I was wrong. That’s not an interference with my own free will. That would be actually showing me real irrefutable evidence. Mind, even if God did come by for tea, I’d have LOTS of questions, and a shifty, “Well, you know, I work in mysterious ways…” will not be a satisfactory answer for me.

I know it’s a satisfactory answer for lots of people. I know that for a lot of people God doesn’t have to appear. I get that a lot of people find comfort and personal strength from believing that if they don’t have an explanation for something, well then, it’s got to be God. Just like for some people, misplacing a pair of scissors or seeing unusual lights in a swamp is satisfactory enough for some people to say, well I can’t explain it, therefore it’s got to be faeries. Or they hear a knocking sound up in the attic or see a flickering light and say, I can’t explain it, therefore it’s got to be a ghost. You can believe it or whatever else you want. I’m not the enemy if I think thermal expansion, or a blown light bulb, or swamp gas, or evolution may be a more likely explanation. Of course I believe I’m right. And, of course, you believe you’re right.

The difference though, is if I suggest I may be right and here’s evidence, you might have to change your mind. If I don’t agree with your idea, I’m going to be condemned to an eternity of torture and suffering by someone who… loves me? Am I reading that right?

Sometimes it’s very frightening to be alone on a dark road and knowing there aren’t any faeries or guardian angels looking out for me. But it’s also comforting to be on that same road and knowing there aren’t any ghosts or demons either. It’s comfort to know the knocking in the attic is just the windows thermally expanding. It’s comfort to know that the unfathomably huge expanse of the universe is just going to keep on doing what it’s doing, with or without me in it. And it may not seem like it to many, but to me, it’s a real comfort to know that this life and this world are all I get, and that I’d better the hell make it count. Again, it’s like knowing how the story ends, but still loving the story.