And so it leaves, 2023. You’re sorely welcome, 2024


The List

To say it was difficult is the worst understatement. I’ll keep it short. So short I’ll just make it a list:

  1. Got my heart broken and was betrayed by one of the handful of people closest to me in my life, to whom I had given my heart completely, to whom I had given absolute trust, with whom I thought I’d grow old with. And in a couple of weeks he let me go completely, like nothing. Like 8 years and all we lived together didn’t existed at all.

  2. This person held, and still holds, tight relationships with people I know and who are dear to me. And they all tried for me to see these whole thing as much as “nothing relevant” as that person. I felt alone, abandoned.

  3. I lost credibility for the industry I work in, for my job, for my career. I lost all respect for it, realized it wasn’t about being good at your craft, about becoming better, about being inspired and motivated. It’s just about playing the very silly (and very american) corporate game. You could say that I also got my heart broken by my career. Which, to those who know me, has been the center of my life and my dreams since I graduated from high school.

  4. These things sent me into a season long bender during summer. No need to get into details there. Just know that I went pretty rough on my mind and body, and in the process I hurt some of my most important relationships.

The Aftermath

Thankfully, this storm eventually ended. But not because my ex reconsidered or finally managed to be vulnerable and reach out. Not because things turned around at the studio and we finally turned into making games and not being obsessed with making money. No. 

I just had to go through the horrible journey of accepting that this is life. And these things aren’t going to change. And that I’ll have to find a new happiness, a new trust, a new motivation and new “pillars” to build a beautiful life in this new, hard, seemingly lonely and dark panorama.

The Painful (but valuable) Teachings

So, yeah, thankfully 2023 didn’t end adding more drama, but instead sort of graduating me from the two worst heartbreaks and disillusionment I’ve lived in my entire life so far. I’m so sad to have learned these painful aspects of life, and from the two innermost cores in me: career and love. I’m so sad I had to experience all that pain. But I got an infinitely valuable knowledge. Just which I hadn’t have to…

 I’m wounded and spent beyond explanation. But I’m standing. And even though at some point in 2023 I used to wake up wishing I hadn’t (for real, I’m not exaggerating), now I just have this urge of making myself happy again, and this anger of never allowing myself to fall into toxic relationships or environments. And if I do, because let’s be honest, I’m no clairvoyant, as soon as I realize, move out of there / away from that person as soon as possible. Because I love myself, and I don’t deserve to take pain from someone else or from anything.

The Closing

Christmas was beautiful. I’m thankful for that. I needed that. Even with my parents away, I managed to score almost 20 days of vacation. And with my dearest friends, my sister and partners with me. Some amazing parties, non-destructive benders, and lots of delicious food (which automatically gave me the extra goal for 2024 to lose that extra weight again!)


Never Again...

I already said the important part: no matter how much it hurts or what I have to lose, I never want to take on more pain for someone else’s selfish sake. Not from a toxic / hurtful relationship, not from work.

Yes it might feel horrible to have to cut someone off from your life. Yes it might be a problem to have to go unemployed for a while. But nothing, nothing should ever be allowed to be taking hits at our wellbeing. The pain from cutting off will be short lived and will heal. Whereas having to withstand memories of hurt for long and seriously damage you for life.

...but I Understand

One more thing I want to apply to 2024: empathy. 

 I know my ex wasn’t evil, that he had / has his troubles too. I tended a hand and tried to find common ground, I told him I was open for communication and understanding him, without changing his decision. But he didn’t come through. I had to go.

I didn’t fear confrontation at my job, and I’m in the process of negotiating how to make things nice for me again. I understand my bosses need to present numbers, I understand they’re also stressed, worried and bound by the relentless capitalist machine that makes everyone lookout only for their own hide, but I won’t stay silent taking hits. And if I have to leave, I’ll leave. 

 And after that summer 2023 bender, and all the pain and rage and hate and resentment… I’m way cooler now, in the sense that I already explored those extremes and found that there’s nothing but pain there too. And that people aren’t evil. Life’s just complicated sometimes.

Dig the Answer

It’s worth digging for the answer to those complications. Maybe because I’m a designer I’m always willing to keep searching for it, as long as the other party wants it too.

 Maybe this is the only unresolved pain I have brought over to 2024. Like, for example: how can someone just abandon love towards someone else? I’ve looked back and I see I’m unable to stop loving. How come I’ve been abandoned so many times by people who suddenly stopped loving me? I don’t know.

I hope this year teaches me something about that. And before I start believing that anyone currently in my life can and will abandon me sooner or later.

The (new) List

Aside from this overarching intentions and expectations for 2024, some more concrete ones would be:

  • Keep my fitness up and going 
  • Travel with my partners 
  • Enjoy new experiences as I learned to do these past years (yes, party included!) 
  • Meet more amazing new people, from all walks of life 
  • Get back into the indie games development scene 
  • Do lots of personal projects, like sticker printing and 3D printing! 
  • Do that bicycle repairing workshop 
  • Do a cocktail preparation workshop 
  • Do a traditional printing methods workshop! 
  • Play many, many more videogames (and to my micro-reviews on them!)

The 2024 Mottos

And finally, the mottos for this year: 

 Grind the Solution. Empathy, but Boundaries. Thrive over Survive. 

 Love you all, please put on your best attitude, let’s make a year to be happy about in december. Even with the hard things out of our control.

Adox J. Roig Oviedo
Adox J. Roig Oviedo
An intense creative who cannot stop doing what he loves.

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