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Morrigan

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  1. Morrigan's Log, Day 22. Reflective Entry. Been unpacking why games are important to me. A lot of it has to do with gender, being able to be someone that is difficult to otherwise be. Lately I've been styling my hair a bit like Link's. I deeply relate to that character. Link is a non-binary icon: Game producer Eiji Aonuma has stated in interviews that the Ocarina of Time iteration of Link was designed to be “gender neutral”. The series creator Shigeru Miyamoto has repeatedly said in interviews Link was designed to be ambiguous and easy for all to identify with from the very beginning. They could only seal that further if they allowed Link to be AFAB (assigned female at birth) instead of AMAB (assigned male at birth) while still being more or less the same. Link, who carries the spirit of the hero, didn't need to have a particular assigned gender when the design of their character has been neutral from so early on. It's bizarre I lived near the woods for 7 years, an ancient forest full of stumps with carved faces hidden betwixt the trees. It felt so mythical and powerful. I felt like I was wandering through the Lost Woods. I was really physically active, running around those glorious ravines with giant boulders and little waterfalls. Some summer nights there would be lightning bugs and the feeling of absolute magic was so, so powerful. Like I was connecting to the Link of my youth, living their story of exploration. I was a joyful, bubbly personality very keen on creating value and magic in the lives of people around me, nerdy acts of kindness. Then I got hurt, and I couldn't be as active, my thoughts slumped into depression without the endorphin rush of movement, and I fell back into games, because I couldn't live the magic I had been creating in my life as deeply. And the terrible sadness of it all is that my body has never been back to that level of flexibility and freedom as it was before I got hurt six years ago. I can't clamber over and hop and wind the way I could so freely. I couldn't afford the physical therapy that was paving my way. I need to do the exercises more regularly at home now if I have a chance of getting my dancing hyperactive ADHD-fairy feet back. I need to try again, now that I'm on German insurance, to heal my body which was broken by ADHD -- walking on one's tiptoes is a neurological symptom of ADHD that was never righted, and walking on my tiptoes gradually caused problems that are now affecting my hips. I need to look at exercises online to fill the gap. Shortly before I quit games, I also got sucked into some visual novels (a hybrid between novel and video game that has limited interaction and may have more or fewer video game elements that may be more or less exploitative) that had they/them pronouns as an option for the main character. I needed that affirmation, that chance to be that person. Fantasy is important for a lot of people. And I need to figure out why it's important to me, and how to bring back some of that magic into my life that I lost along the way. How to breathe health and life into my body and mind. How to capitalize on the joy and power of fantasy to help us imagine something beautiful to inspire us to lead greater lives. Listening to a new album today, "Spells" by Ben Lukas Boysen.
  2. Morrigan's Logs, day 21. I got some tea to share. Saturday we signed off on a room in a two-room flat in a gorgeous neighborhood in the outskirts. Then the single remaining flatmate (Mr. Sketchy wasn't even present) threatened to revoke his signature unless we meet a series of demands, including paying his deposit while he's still legally a resident there. We look into finding a replacement tenant in the hope some compromise can be reached. Two days later a bunch of stuff in the apartment is damaged and Mr. Sketchy says we're in luck since we only have to pay him his part of the deposit instead of the people who left, after we'd signed off on the apartment being in pristine condition, despite him still legally being a tenant and nothing stopping him from deciding to stay if we paid him off. We weren't okay with being extorted so we called the police to record the damages and returned the keys in front of the police, which has legal significance in Germany. It hurts like hell to walk away from that apartment after almost a eight months of searching, but we were not willing to do some pay-it-backwards bullshit with a sketchy roommate who likely did some of those damages himself, especially when those damages would have made it more difficult to find a replacement flatmate for Mr. Sketchy. I'm exhausted. I so wanted to pack up my things and move, start my life. Seems we're still in limbo, but life must continue. I still have my appointment with a German school next week, and I'll enroll even if I don't know where in this sprawling metropolis I'm going to be living in a few months. It sucks, but what else can I do but move forward? I will scrounge up my strength, gather some gratitude. Goals: Apply to more apartments. Take care of some doctor things. Pick up a package. Daily stretches. Clean up apartment for arrival of main tenant tomorrow. Paint another portrait. Gratitude: My wife is able to defend us with her German and knowledge of our legal rights. We still have a place to live. The weather is beautiful lately. We have free reign of public transit with a monthly pass. We have joined a makerspace and have access to wicked awesome tools. I have this comfort: without constantly gaming all the time, we are able to follow through on our goals. Morrigan Out.
  3. Morrigan's Logs, day 16. Been a productive few days. Some fun busyness thrown in alongside lots of paperwork printed out at a copy shop on Tuesday, lots of handling said paperwork yesterday, including my taxes. Not knowing German and German bureaucracies is stressful, activating my social anxiety and/or Rejection Sensitive Dysphoria in many situations. It makes me lean on my spouse more than lack of language skills alone, which has its own complications. It is possible to get by on English alone in many situations here in Berlin, but in the past few days I needed my wife as backup both for language skills and for my tendency to freeze when I don't understand instead of trying to communicate in my "Leichte Sprache" (easy language). We agreed to try role-playing some scenarios to help me navigate more independently without requiring her by my side so much, and that I'd look into German lessons targeted at situations like mailing letters, cashiers who need me to re-scan the last item, etc. Some important things are in motion. By Monday we should have some final answers concerning an apartment. Getting a long-term place is so difficult in Berlin, and the incredible mixture of hope and fear I feel at having the prospect of a more stable situation has me wound up. Such extremities of emotion are far more pleasant when less is at stake! On a healthy habits note, we've been getting up earlier since Tuesday, and it feels really good having taken care of a thing or two before noon and having the rest of the day ahead. There's a few items on my to-do list (bullet journal style) that I hope to get to today, though the temptation to simply recuperate from the active burst of the previous days (since this weekend, too, shall be full of Serious Business) is very-present. I think that one of today or tomorrow should have ample time set aside to regenerate. But if I take care of these things early today, I have the rest of the day to regenerate with the non-gaming activities of my choice and tomorrow to boot... the glory of being done is deliciously tempting. Grateful for forward motion. Morrigan Out.
  4. Morrigan's Logs, day 13. It is SO empowering to spend time with people who are highly effective and motivated, in-person or online. I have been open about stepping away from gaming and my addictive habits with the people I've been speaking to, they've responded really positively rather than dismissing it. One person said something I really appreciated, asking not just about my negative interactions with media I'm avoiding, but what are my positive interactions with media that are healthy? And there is some media consumption in my life that I do think is healthy. Watching something over dinner with my wife has become a comforting ritual for the two of us. Just as I love to have productivity/accountability buddies, I love to consume culture with others. It's important to have a balanced diet of cultural consumption, and sharing it with others helps me keep mine varied. Even better if those people are also creating... Today, I indulged in a video of gameplay for a game that isn't out yet. Afterwards I had a serious craving to game, so it's not something I'm likely to repeat in the future. Glad I still said no. J and I got some potentially very good news but I don't want to count our eggs before they're hatched... Today I am boundlessly grateful for good company, parks, sunshine, Neil deGrasse Tyson, and the Public Universal Friend. Morrigan out. p.s. This log has the honor of being the first log on my Very Professional Workstation for Very Professional Work. Still some work to do on it, but it's a grand start.
  5. Morrigan's Logs, day 12. Good things. I am tired from walking in nature today, very proud of my accomplishments yesterday. I might update less frequently if this trend continues. I very much have support, and I set up some reflecting tools yesterday that may displace this journal more than a little. I'm soft looking into groups for ADHD support and survivors. Morrigan out.
  6. Hey game quitters. Any other ADHD-havers in the house? In many ways I love having ADHD. It is central to my personality, and I can't imagine myself without it: energy, creativity, and hyper-focus on wonderful things are all part of the package. But it can also allow me to give into destructive impulses, especially in the face of the collective external stress of the pandemic. I've been watching How To ADHD and looking up other resources like additude mag. I love the STOP method in the ADHD and Boredom video (stop, take a breath, observe, proceed) and advice on how to give my stimulation-hungry brain what it needs to function in a world built for other people. If you have ADHD, suspected or diagnosed, do share! It can make quitting addictions challenging in different ways, but there are still so many ways to live a fulfilling and productive life with ADHD. If you don't have ADHD, there's still plenty to relate to in stories of of executive dysfunction and getting control of one's focus and energy. Morrigan Out.
  7. Morrigan's Logs, day 10. Today my wife prepared some absolutely delicious dumplings. She is able to elevate even frozen meals into the greatest heights on earth with spices and flavorings. I made brownies from scratch, which we'll tuck into tomorrow. I sketched a little bit, talked to family. I didn't feel so great: there was a general sense of impending doom. It left me somewhat frozen, but I still did some good things. Mixed: dropped my phone and cracked the glass. It still works, albeit with crushed glass sticking to my calloused fingertips and only a little bit of screen left unscathed. We ordered a glass repair-and-replace kit and booked a session with a hackerspace we've both been hoping to get into anyways. J will check out the tools and we'll see if they have a few tools we're missing to repair the phone, e.g. a heat bed. We've been wanting this for awhile, and if it works out I don't think I'll mind the cracked glass so much. Sometimes a figurative kick gets some great things in motion. J and I talked some about how anxiety holds me back from doing things, and made a bit of progress on a few different practical fronts, including hunting down excellent flavors. She was feeling emotionally exhausted at multiple points and retreated into gaming in her lows, but was respectful when I asked her to wear headphones. I'm doing what I can to not stick my nose into her game too much, effectively so far. Maybe after my detox and structure is in my life we can consider a shared gaming session, but We were still able to negotiate emotional needs effectively. We did well. Tomorrow, I challenge myself to go through the list of English-speaking therapists in Berlin and contact them. It's scary knowing that there may be many rejections given how booked they are in this city, but some things won't improve without taking major steps, and those steps are better taken with the professionals. I'm grateful for all the little acts of kindness we gave one another. We're still newly-weds in many ways, and it is really intoxicating to have that energy in our lives. Morrigan Out.
  8. Morrigan's logs, day 9. It is beginning to seem that the place I ordered ink from was incorrect about having it here by Friday. They haven't shipped it yet. Might cave and line Jeff Bezo's pockets for quick shipping (nope, Amazon doesn't have it either). Might print my paperwork at a copy shop for now. Furthermore, I will probably not be able to enroll in an integration course for a few months, the waiting list is long in Berlin. I'll find ways to make the wait enriching. Take care out there.
  9. Welcome, I like your avatar! Is it a character from anything in particular? Art style reminds me of the Scott Pilgrim series. Good luck in the pursuit of your goals!
  10. Morrigan's Logs, Day 8. My mission today was to find printer ink. Absolutely no stores had the cartridges I need in stock, but I found a place that should deliver it by the end of the week. Shopping offline means walking and walking was good for me, the park was lovely. Some gaming urge but I stay away. My wife gamed more today after returning from an appointment. I read a lot of comics and slept a fair amount. Bizarre dreams. I might be facing my low mood more now that I'm not covering it up with games. I need to be careful to not let webcomics or other screenscrolling become my new numbing agent. Reading is more enriching than video games, but I still need to advance my life. Have things to book. Exercises to do. Hopefully I will be less sleepy tomorrow. I'm grateful to be sleepy before midnight. Best if I take advantage of that, and maybe even get out of bed at a reasonable hour tomorrow. Gotta hang laundry first... Today I'm grateful for riversides, parks, paths, and paint.
  11. Morrigan's Logs, Day 7. Low-energy today, read a lot of comics and studied how different artists draw different features, especially hands. Hands are tricky. Despite low energy, I still left the house for a park gathering. My wife wasn't feeling up to it after having her spoons eaten up early. Lovely people. It feels safe to do such gatherings here. After I got home late in the evening, my wife decided to game again for the first time since I quit. I coaxed her away to socialize with me me for a bit (we'd had some quality time earlier that day), now she's back to it. Ultimately we're allowed to do different things with our free time, and this isn't a case where her playing is creating an insatiable urge to game. I've had dry houses when a housemate couldn't handle alcohol in a healthy way, but I'll keep an eye on myself and our relationship. She does disappear into things sometimes which can hurt, and we're both happier when we're both happy, but my best friend gave me excellent advice from their own marriage: when someone isn't doing well, sometimes it's best to do things separately. It can be difficult in plague times. Even with things more open here there's less available and we're critical of what risks we taks, where "risk" includes a busy crowded supermarket at peak hours vs. an unbusy one at unbusy hours. So more or less, my wife is a big girl and can make her own choices. I still need to step up and speak of my needs for connection, which I've gotten better at. "Could you close your laptop? I'd like your attention for a bit." Our marriage is still new in many ways. We have so much to learn, so much growth ahead as a couple. It's beautiful, even if growth is painful at times in its everyday frustrations. I'm reflecting on what I've gotten from gaming and how to get it from other sources. I love story and character design, but perhaps reviews are more time efficient consumption than playing. I managed to write good reflection on video games based on let's plays and critical reviews. I want the creative role of story teller and programmer and designer, might do some research on how games can be beneficial. That wiring makes Duolingo addictive, though my language skills in German are at a point where I need more polished instruction that I'd love to gamify on my own terms, perhaps bullet journal style. Adding play and personal achievement, without someone else setting the goal posts. Play, rather than vidya games. I'm grateful to share growth with my wife, for queer community, for good reception on art I shared last evening, for diversity in character design, for positive connection with my crazy artsy fabulously unique family. Now for tea and turning in...
  12. Morrigan's Logs, Day 6. An excellent Sunday. Practiced some art, listened to music, made simple yet delicious food, called my mom, and watched Studio Ghibli with my love.
  13. Thanks. My adhd brain needs stimulation but I'm reframing boredom by reading about its benefits. I avoid physically painful boredom (yes, too much boredom is physically painful for me) but allow just enough boredom to ask myself what I want, turning it into introspection or thinking on the page/screen.
  14. Morrigan's Log, Day 5. Today was a good day.
  15. Morrigan's Log, Day 4. Lots of thoughts! Today I exude gratitude. Yesterday I dwelt on the value of boredom. Yesterday marked a week of three overlapping ailments, one remedying as another crept in. At points I had been too unwell to do much, including engage with entertaining diversions -- whether watching netflix or gaming. That boredom gave me room to reflect, and probably directly contributed to me deciding I'd had enough. I have had some precious unbusy, bored idleness as my body continues to recover, as I let other desires that the urge to game resurface in the unused hours. Among other things, it's sparking creativity. The benefits of boredom have been studied (for example), and I'm enjoying them. It's not all quiet. The quality of time I've spent with my wife is so much better, even improving daily. I'm significantly happier. The gaming urge is beautifully easy to swat away. I wanna get addicted to this feeling of living in the real world. Day isn't over yet. I feel very grateful for the day, quality time with my wife, modern medicine, beautiful Germany, good smells, and strength returning to my body and mind. Goals for the weekend: More journaling Meta-stuff, figuring out what my goals are and what books to read Light exercise More quality time with my lady fair