After Chinami was born, my parents estranged themselves from me, plus my husband and any kids I had and would have. It was unfortunate but ultimately the best decision. Chinami is 5 now, and Kairu is almost 2. I feel like if they really wanted to make things right they would have at least tried once by now. My mother obviously has the means to get my contact info as she demonstrated by threatening us, and I also did leave the door open with suggestions of therapy and or mediation for us if they are willing. No contact from them until this point tells me that we are likely not worth enough to them and they really don't have the capacity to love unconditionally. It's a shame but it's something I am coming to accept and move on from. Lots of good healthy habits, positivity, and making a good environment for myself has helped.
After Kairu was born, I've been feeling something else. A desire to rediscover myself. A desire to sharpen and hone my skills and put them to honest use. I feel like I've put a lot on hold to raise my kids. But what exactly? In Japan, I was an English teacher. I also made YouTube videos. I also drank and partied and occasionally rode the back of a motorcycle. I didn't exactly establish a career or even a specific skill set. And now I'm 31. What do I want to do? All I've been doing for the past 5 years is breastfeeding, changing diapers, cooking, cleaning, working part time taking Japanese tourists to the airport while using impeccable Keigo, and I feel like not much else. People tell me I'm doing an amazing job but I feel so useless. Social media has been a blessing and a curse. I've become more engaged but more distant at the same time.
I started working on efforts to bring more Japanese TV into our home for free or low-cost, and at the moment we've settled on watching Japanese Hulu using a VPN. My kids enjoy watching shows like Anpanman, Shimajirou, etc. and they are getting some Japanese input instead of just English from Netflix. However, I had a thought the other day while I was in the office doing some mundane highlighting/folding/stapling tasks.
My kids are born and raised in Hawaii. All of the Japanese TV shows are for Japanese kids raised in Japan. My kids and kids in general seem to get excited when they see something on TV that corresponds to them in their real life. It's one of the reasons Pokemon Sun and Moon is so exciting for us. But all of these Japanese kids shows generally show a lot of things that you would find in Japan, but not Hawaii. Bullet trains, cherry blossoms, fall leaves, etc are all things that don't even exist here in Hawaii but in Japan they're a pretty common subject in the media. So I had an idea...
If I successfully carry out this project, I will be able to use my Youtube knowledge, social media savvy, my Japanese, my experience working with and raising kids, my music, my costume designs, my art, and even my kids can help out if they are able to! (I already asked Chinami to write me a song on the ukulele, we'll see how that goes) I plan on having Chinami play a part but she will be wearing a mask to protect her privacy.
And if I am successful it will really give validation to these years I've spent kind of neither here nor there. It will really help me come full circle.
But it is a big if. Since I had the inspiration I've been totally motivated, writing out plans and planning the accounts and coordination, working on names, logos, structure, etc. But it only took one tiny little thing yesterday to bring it crashing down. I think I will be fighting for this. But I think it will be worth the fight.
Coming soon, hopefully 2018!