Liralen Li (liralen) wrote,
Liralen Li

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I’m adrift, still.

Still haven’t found a direction and a reason or a passion or a thing that I have to go out and do.

And I’ve been wandering for a while, and I realized, today, that it was all right.

A friend of mine, someone whom I’ve admired and interacted with with great enjoyment had a son who suicided in the last month, leaving behind a baby son, a wife, his friends, his parents, and all who knew him in sorrow. He did it violently, too, and it’s scarred a great number of people who loved him very much.

And I realized that as much as I’m without direction, rudderless, I also don’t have a huge hole in the bottom of my boat, either. I have a sail and the sun and plenty of provisions and water and a crew who is waiting in the wings, understanding in some way that I really just need some doldrums for a while, a rest that will actually heal the deep tiredness from the last few voyages that were fraught with dangers, storms, lost souls, and emotional turmoil. All of that will sustain me while I figure out when or even if I want to take the rudder. There are winds blowing in all directions, political, musical, art, writing, technological, and there are muses all around me; and all it will take is for me to sit down and listen.

The Tao de Ching informs me that I don’t really have to go anywhere, and that it’ll come to me if it’s going to come. John also chimed in to say that once I’m convinced of a direction, he has no doubt that I will kill myself getting there. No matter what it is. And it’s kind of peaceful for a bit for me to actually not be throwing every bit of my energy at something.

I know some women, not many, around me, who want to be thought of as young. Who would do anything to be carded again or have a young man just out and out say that he’s just in love with her on a whim. I have a bit of advice for you: Go play TF2 or Rainbow 6 Siege and be at all good at the game. *laughs quietly*

I was playing with Jet on Friday and a guy was like, “OMG, are you a GGGGIIIIIRRRRRLLL?!?!?!”

I said, “No.”

“Oh, RIP,” he said laughing, thinking that that meant that I was a boy.

I laughed back, “Oh, no, I’m female. I’m just well over 21.

“21?” He was so confused as to what that had to do with anything.

“I’m just… I’m not a girl anymore,” I said, and didn’t actually say I’m a mother of a 17-year-old, it’s been a very long time since I’ve felt like a child.

In part because the boys call me a girl for the same reason they call themselves boyz. In part because it’s gamer speak without regard to the denigrating aspect of what they call each other never mind what they call me. And in part because the next thing he said was, “I LOVE YOU.”

And I answered, “I’m glad that you do. That’s very kind of you.” Which it is, really.

That guy and I went on to both get six kills, and a few assists, and the boys were impressed that I was not just a girl, but a good gamer too.

The last part is because in game, I don’t feel old or young, I just feel like myself. As people have noted before, the person that I think of a being myself doesn’t feel as old as the dates say that I am. I sound twenty something to all the gamer boyz that I play with on a frequent basis, and I giggle and play and enjoy myself with them. And I feel like a girl when I’m just playing and having fun and learning and fighting with the people I care about defending or doing well for.

Maybe it’s part of why I play? I do know that some of it is just being accepted as I was accepted online, without biases for my physical appearance, my physical race, or my visible age or looks. I’m just me in a way that’s only possible online, and which I’ve known since ARPANET and which I’ve always come back to experience, and then walk away from again when people prove to still be just people.

Today was the Christian Candlemas, where candles get blessed for the coming year, as it’s the day between winter and spring; and the whole service was about light. One of the exercises was to describe to the person next to you what kind of light you are. But John and I flipped it and I told him he was one of those LED lights that shines steady forever and you nearly never have to change and is dependent on the quantum tunneling to work. *laughs* He thought that that was pretty cool and he said that I was a pulsar, a variant on the oh-so introverted black hole stars, because it has the mass of thousands of black hole and gives out energy pulses that are larger than that of all the stars still in existence. Most black holes you can’t see except by the influence they have on the bodies that surround them.

I just finished the Ancillary series by Ann Lecke, and was very impressed, and loved how it worked out. It’s something that’s going to really shape how I approach my Quan Ying, I think, to the good, filling out something I’d been thinking about in a direction that makes far more sense and gives it all a better direction that is more like living. What I really want to know is what Breq did for the Itran Tetrarchy. *laughs* I loved the flavor of Eastern practices and tea. I still don’t think I’ll go that far into the future, but there’s so many problems with near future, that it’ll be interesting.

But of lights and lost boyz and directions: the gamers who are the all-day gamers that I play with the most are about as rudderless as I am. The ones that have found the thing that they need to pursue for now have disappeared. The ones who stay are ones with medical problems, with things happening in their lives that they want to escape for a while, or they’re high schoolers who have had problems with their peers in school or just aren’t that motivated by school. The games are what they’re great at and it’s what they do. I like being with them. I also like that the more sane one have realized that exercise is a needful thing, and that if they really want to get into competitive, they have to balance the scrims and play time with actual physical exercise and their work and things they have to do for their lives.

The ones out of comp and who play games just for fun after work or school are still the best for me, and when I’ve been limiting my hours to just the hours that Jet can play, it’s been both better and worse, as then all I played was R6 and I was losing my TF2 friends. I am gradually gaining those back, with a few hours spread over the week just playing with my TF2 friends, and still learning the game.

But I have to really watch the hours, and I really have to figure out what next I’m going to do. I finally put up an Etsy Store to sell my art and my cards. The art isn’t up yet, but I’ll have some up before the 17th of February, because I’ll have a Taiko show that I’m supposed to put paintings up at and demonstrate my brush painting at. So I should have things to sell there. It’s just the steps before me that fell out of doing the Longmont Studio Tour.

We’ll see where the ship goes.
Tags: art, coping, gaming, painting

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