Can You Not?

I have to look over my shoulder every five seconds to make sure that my cat, Jasper, is not currently attempting to knock everything over on my mini desk. I have a canister of pens, along with a few books, my iced coffee, and a small bowl of ginger candies I nibble on when my stomach is upset. Jasper would like all of these things on the floor. Now she is glaring at me, simply because I shook my cup of iced coffee at her. Apparently, she did not enjoy the sound of ice rattling around in her general direction.

This perfectly sums up my day. My wife and I went shopping with my grandfather. It should be noted that he is elderly (obviously), and has dietary restrictions. I.E., he isn’t suppose to ingest a bunch of sodium. Because he has a hard time with keeping track of money and the items he is purchasing, as well as because of his mobility disability, Coventry and I tend to go shopping with him, either following him around on his bad days, or, like today, checking in on him every so often while we shop for ourselves.

We went to three stores. It took about four and a half hours to do everything we needed to do (mostly because my grandfather likes to go up and down every single aisle to see if anything new has been added). That’s fine! I don’t mind at all! In the second store, however, because we didn’t need to get anything for ourselves and because of the layout of said store, my wife and I decided to help my grandpa with his shopping.

It became painfully clear after two aisles that he had no intention of purchasing low-sodium foods. Everything he bought contained more than his total recommended allotment of salt. When I pointed this out to him, he basically told me that he did not care! My wife was so upset that she had to step away.

What’s important to understand here is that my grandfather is in a lot of pain right now. His doctors have told him, repeatedly, that there are exercises he needs to do for his legs (where the pain is), as certain things in his diet that he needs to pay attention to in order to alleviate the pain. One of the things he has been told to do is to lay off of the salt!

I guess I’m just ranting here, mostly because I am able to do so. It’s very upsetting and frustrating that he doesn’t listen to anyone. If he got it through his head that listening to the doctors would help him, he wouldn’t be in so much pain.

Another thing that happened today (and yesterday, actually), is that YouTube put into motion the fact that you cannot have ‘family-friendly’ content. It has to be either ‘aimed at kids’ or ‘for adults.’ There is no in between. For example–all of the doll repainters’ channels have been flagged as ‘for kids.’ This means that those artists will not and cannot receive any money anymore for their videos, there are no ads to play on their channels, and no comments can be posted. This is huge! Many doll artists make money–their living!–off of the money they received from adverts on their episodes. They can also be fined upwards of $42k per upload if YouTube decides that their content is not kid-friendly–EVEN IF THE CONTENT CREATOR STATES THAT IT IS NOT FOR CHILDREN!

Because of this, I no longer have a YouTube channel. I took it down for fear that my doll videos would be flagged. I didn’t make money off of them, but there is no way I could pay that much if they decided my content was not child-friendly. Maybe, in the future, when YouTube figures out what they are doing, I will start up a channel focusing on books again. I had one there for a little while, but it didn’t last.

Will I still make doll repaints? Of course. I want to, however, focus more on my writing and reading for the time being. I miss being able to create a character and just…explore them. Dolls are nice, of course! From now on, though, I will only be creating dolls of my previously fleshed-out characters. This means characters from my writing, or maybe from anime, video games, or movies–but that’s a big ‘maybe.’ Mostly, I want to get back into being as creative as I was in college and high school.

With that being said…I will no longer be participating in doll swaps or collaborations. I have one or two more that I will finish this year, but other than that, I really don’t like the pressure put on me to finish by a certain time. It’s art! It’s not a paper in college, or something like that. Sometimes, art takes a little while to come to life, or to speak to the artist. I just find that I can’t work on something properly with a gun to my head–which is exactly how a due date feels at this point.

I think I might be rambling, but I had to get a lot of this off of my chest. I’ve been so trapped for so long. It feels nice to be able to write about what I am going through. Some things I can’t write about, however; it would break me. I don’t want to cry, so I’m not going to think about certain things that are going on within my family. Perhaps soon, but not tonight.

Earlier in the entry, I did mention YouTube and their issues. This isn’t to say that I’ve completely given up on the platform. I think it just needs to be looked over and fixed. So many people can’t just be swept under the rug! It’s…upsetting, to say the least. It would be like if YouTube decided that every single person who made his or her or their living on the site could no longer get paid. Just…they would be expected to work without pay. Not to mention the idea that, if they did not meet certain standards, they would be sued. It doesn’t make any lick of sense!

I mostly mention this now because I wanted to put in a few videos from YouTube that I have been watching lately, and that have been helping me with my writing/reading vibes. The first set of videos are from an author and YouTube self-help guru, Jenna Moreci. She is the author of a novel called “The Savior’s Champion,” which I have been attempting to hunt down and read for about six months now.

The next few videos are from BookTubers whom I absolutely love. “BookTube” is a book-based community on YouTube. The content creators primarily discuss books and reviews of novels and poetry, though sometimes they have videos that are vlogs or just day-to-day shenanigans.

Next year will be my year. I am going to lose weight, read more, and write more. Here’s to hoping I can stick to it…