So, a couple know parts of this story, and all has been put to rest from the matter, but I wanted to talk about this in a public space in the hopes to firstly bring light to what I think some people may have at one point struggled with, and to secondly openly apologize to all of those who I had been avoiding. I'm gonna try to keep this as short and undramatic as possible, but I think a good lesson can be learned and shared, and I've gotten enough distance from it to talk about it.
The last few months of my life haven't been very good emotionally for me. Starting in September, I had a series of financial setbacks and personal losses that - frankly - made going about my daily business difficult. I have a lot of mental stuff that I deal with (anxiety and depression), and so I began sliding into what was essentially a massive depressive state.
Pins have always been a reprieve for me. I got into trading because I loved the people and the stories, and that thrill of the hunt. And I loved the sense of fulfillment it gave me. It was this little thing that I could control in the world and organize, and it kept me anchored. But by September, after Prime's exhausting pin quest and after getting a full collection for myself, I sort of began questioning whether I should keep doing this.
Before Prime, I had promised to get several people pins, @Chubby Bunny
being two of them. I tried my best to get him as many of the pins at Prime as I could, but due to the bulk of them, I fell short just a little bit. Being the depressive and out of quite a bit of money, it was then strange when I won a trip to PAX Aus and was suddenly able to go down and get the pins there. If I hadn't won that trip, and hadn't had a lot of help from some family members, I don't think I could have gone down there. But I made it, and it was a blast.
So, it's October now, and I've promised @TheAggroCraig
to get him Aus pins. And I go, and I have a great time, and then I come back home and everything falls apart even more for me. My credit card got stolen, a lot of medical expenses piled up. It's all boring stuff, but the gist of it is that at that time, I wasn't even thinking about pins. I was just trying to tread water.
December came, and things kept getting worse, and I kept not sending Chubby and pureval and Craig their pins. I got on the forums less and less. I tried distancing myself, because if I did log on and show myself, they'd know I was a failure, and if I didn't log on, maybe I could scrape together money and get them the pins soon. But things kept spiraling, and I kept playing this weird mind-game of ignoring the problem while trying to fix others, and not communicating with them at all. And for that, I am very sorry.
By January, things got a bit more stable in my life, and mentally I was in a proper place again after some help. Getting together what spare cash I'd saved, I finally sent off the pins (except for Bunny's, cus it's better to give pins in bulk straight to the person than risk them being lost as @Fitzchivalry
and I once had a fun time with). So I sent off the pins... but I still didn't say anything to pure or Craig.
contacted me. We talked, I told him some of the troubles I was having, and he helped get in touch and confirm that my trading partners were going to get their stuff. In the end, it all worked out.
I don't really have a thesis for all of this. Partly, just putting it here is a form of catharsis for me, and part of the least I can do to apologize for ignoring pin-trading for so long. But really, I think what can be gained from all of this is that... this is a good community. We have a lot of really good people here. They're kind, and they understand hardships. I think a lot of us may go through similar mental stuff, and may have at some points just been overwhelmed with trading. And that's okay.
Because we can reach out and ask for help. Pedro and pure were understanding, and really helpful. I'm certainly not saying to just be lazy with trades, and to not send. But if you're having troubles, the people on this forum are here for you. Part of what I loved seeing as South was all the great and new enthusiasm people had for Pinny Arcade. I got to help one guy get his Kitten Kemper, and sort of moderate the trade. I gave out some fodder pins for new enthusiasts to build their set with. It felt good, and the energy was really good.
I think, sometimes, some of us might get into our heads a bit about other people. And money can be a big issue. But if you have a problem with your trading, the real world comes first. And we all know that.
I don't know what anyone else is going through, or if anyone else has been through something like this. I just think that going forward, I'll be less afraid to be open about my problems I have. Less afraid that I'll get ostracized from the community. In the end, we all sort of want each other to succeed. Seeing someone get their set finally and get a trade they really wanted is not only rewarding for them, but for us to see. It's a good emotional thing.
Sorry for rambling, and for the long read. I just want to say again that I'm super appreciative of all who were involved in my strange little debacle, and that I'm back on my feet now. This is a great community; don't be afraid to reach out.