As of this week, Oni is back. For real. Hi.
You may have noticed that ever since I started losing my sight in Fall 2015 I pulled back from posting on here. Truly I need to thank my team for helping me during this time because it was one of the worst times mentally and physically for me. In addition to numerous health problems, worsening of extreme chronic pain, and deaths of my family members and friends it totally crushed me. Couple that with increased responsibilities and harassment because of the success I’ve had so far and it was an untenable situation.
It was worse than you think it was. It was harder than what I put online.
A huge shout out goes to my Ops team. Paul DiGennaro, Derek Price, Ginger Peterson, and Miranda Major (Check out her bookstore, Half Moon Collectibles in Nebraska, USA) . Also Kara Dennison Craig Cobalt, and the rest of the 145 members of my staff. And of course, the man who had to bear the brunt of every aspect of my mental and physical breakdown – my sweet husband James Harknell.
I still get weirded out that I can see, but I’m better at navigating it than even just last week. My face is starting to look like me again.
Imagine if you all of a suddenly didn’t recognize who you saw in the mirror after a surgery. That’s why most of the pictures you see of me for all of 2016 are old or me with sunglasses on. I had NO IDEA that my entire life I didn’t really know what I looked like. I did, of course but also I didn’t. Then – HD ME IN MY FACE.
I just couldn’t recognize myself. It felt like I had been killed or changed and it was upsetting.
And my chronic pain condition got worse. It’s always been bad but I guess age 30 is when things start no longer being something you can ignore. I am heartened that I have a doctor that will try some things to get me a diagnosis and some help.
Now that I feel like me the only thing in my way of making art is time. I’m 3 weeks out from Intervention 7, which I hope you’ll come say hi to me at, because I do need your support now more than ever. My days are packed.
I haven’t felt this good since 2 or 3 years ago when my eyes started to finally deteriorate. I’m able to talk to people again. My anxiety is lower. I can think straight. I used to get anxiety leaving my apartment because I had to drive while blind. I did that for almost 15 years. Blind AF. Drive anyway. How else would I get a paycheck, I ask you? There’s no public transportation to where the jobs are here.
It’s surprisingly easy to understand what’s going on around me now. I can read street signs so I don’t have to rely on the bizarre counting method I used to use to estimate distances. If I drop something I quickly pick it up and remain calm. I don’t freak out inside like if the world is ending.
It’s like I’ve been tuned up and let out of my box like the Terminator.
Thanks to my wonderful support team I can post more online. The Internet has changed in the last 3 years. You can no longer post anything without someone taking a sentence out of context and trying to debate you on stupid shit. Or worse yet – insult and attack.
I have a new policy now and it’s the only way for me to exist with this many people trying to get my attention. I am no longer going to be able to respond to all Facebook comments. I’m still on social media, but I’m not reading all of them anymore. I’m utilizing my support team to monitor and moderate the comments for me and they will tell me when I should go in and reply or not. I’d turn them off like I did here if I could but FB won’t allow it.
I do not owe anyone access to me or an explanation. If you would like to talk to me, meet me at one of my cons or work with me on a project. And frankly, unless your name was listed above in this post or I physically work with you on the regular, you probably do not know me personally enough to say jack shit to me about anything in my life.
I do not owe anyone a debate.
And that’s what the internet has become today, thanks to this election cycle. Everyone thinks they are brilliant and want to totally yell their opinion at you no matter how misinformed and stupid it is.
I need to prioritize my time to create, and not sit here like a clown replying to random people clarifying what I mean when they’ve twisted my words to mean the worst conclusion that they could possibly put together with paper clips and chewed gum like some Asshole MacGyver.
I am not teaching remedial Hooked on Phonics.
Every time I make a blog post I do not need to metaphorically stand up and allow whoever feels like it endless chances to throw tomatoes at me.
Bitch all you want on your own time. I’ll be using that same time you are wasting earning money and making my work even better so that it serves more people and helps more families.
Most people are great, but that small percentage of assholes has ruined it.
I refuse to censor myself to accommodate the lowest common denominator. I refuse to give anyone that level of power over what I say and do. People respect me because I don’t play bullshit, and I don’t intend to start now.
Internet comments are what people used to yell at their TV sets. If the TV responded to every single one of them there would be no cohesive anything on TV. It would be a disjointed mishmash of pandering bullshit.
I will do many things but pandering is not one of them. I don’t pander, don’t lie, and I sure as hell won’t take anyone’s shit. If that means that I have to let my team manage aspects that I used to then so be it. That is my act of “self-care”.
It feels good to be back and to feel like myself again. Brace yourself. It’s going to be a great year.
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