Start Over やり直し

Okay, let’s first address the white elephant in the room: After more than a year and a half of hiatus, I am, indeed restarting my blog.

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After I started working for Kawaii-ku, my life suddenly became very busy. I was getting requests to make videos for clients (including Fukuoka City), which meant sending each video for approval and making revisions and going back and forth constantly to the point that I no longer had the time or energy to make my own, I was suddenly appearing on television, and I was constantly worried about my appearance/character. I was doing interviews, I was giving presentations, I made it to callbacks for a big audition for a ~certain NHK drama~ (that I obviously didn’t end up getting but that’s okay because the lady that did suited the role much better), I got sicker than I’d ever been in my life, and on a personal level, I moved out of the apartment I had shared with my long-term partner, and suffered a messy fallout and continuous harassment because of it that has even lasted up until now, which, on top of everything else was mentally and emotionally draining. It also made me terrified of standing out, which unfortunately, I couldn’t really control at this point.

I know a lot of you know his name, but please don’t mention it. I don’t want his name tracing back to my blog or my content anymore. 

In some ways, I felt like I had lost control of everything, I couldn’t understand how I could be, by outside perspective, “wonderful, creative, unique, successful”, and yet feel so dark and miserable on the inside. Eventually I reached a point where I couldn’t deal with my own miserable self and began medical treatment for depression and anxiety, which helped me calm down, but didn’t fix the problems. During that time I lost the will to communicate with anyone, because I knew I had nothing positive, encouraging, or interesting to say. How could I encourage anyone to follow their dreams when everything felt so out of control? Blah blah blah, anyway, basically life kicked my butt, and updating my blog and making youtube videos no longer fell into my list of things to do.

Screen Shot 2015-05-02 at 1.53.41 PMAnd then dark-Micaela was born.

At the worst of times it felt like my head was so clouded that I couldn’t remember where I was or what I was doing. I could always show up for work and do my job, whatever the job of the day may be, but I have no recollection of what I did, and whether or not I did it well. I felt like my life was on autopilot and I was simply observing. Admittedly, I could have handled the past 2 years a lot better than I did, but hindsight is 20/20, as they say. If I could go back, I would have shown more appreciation for the opportunities that were given to me, and I would have tried harder to make connections with people, instead of being so stuck inside myself.

Kawaii-ku’s contract ended in March this year, after a year and a half of great experiences and lots of hard work. April has actually been insanely quiet. On one hand, of course, I’m wondering what I’m supposed to be doing now, I’m wondering how I’m going to make a living, and I’m wondering where I’m headed… But on the other hand, I’m finally taking the time to breathe and re-assess and remind myself what it is I was meant to do here on this planet.

In a financial sense, April has been the most “unstable” month in a long time, but in a way, it’s liberating, because I finally feel like I have room to breathe, and the pressure to do anything other than what I want is lifted.

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And it’s not like I am completely jobless either. Last year I started a contract with “Kyushu Broadcasting” KBC Radio, and began working on their morning news show, “Morning Wave”, as their Friday Morning personality. This year following the end of Kawaii-ku, they assigned me to a new project called, “Kyushu Marugoto Tokku”, which sends me all over Kyushu to do reports on different lifestyles and reports that appear both on the radio, online, and are also published in Asahi Newspaper. To be honest I was skeptical about doing radio because it was never something I had thought about doing as a career, but unlike TV, radio really lets you be yourself.

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I have a great co-host who bounces off all the oddball things I say, and counters my opinions with a balanced phrase or comment to make sure no opinion is left one-sided. Never have they asked me to change who I am, or play up my foreignness. I’m so thankful that they treat me like a person, and the radio listeners have been so welcoming too. Even if it wasn’t something I ever imagined I’d be doing, it’s nice to have a place to go once a week where I can talk and entertain people. It’s low key, but it’s exactly what I need right now. Low key.

Anyway, I’ve been trying to convince myself that it’s okay to be me–flaws and all. Over time I’ve slowly found myself wanting to communicate, to meet people, to make friends, to smile and be helpful and be remembered as someone who is good.

Last month I took a short trip to Seoul, Korea, as a little (well deserved?) getaway, and once again, discovered my love for travelling and adventure. More importantly, I discovered the necessity for blogs and online content. I relied on blogs more than anything while travelling through Seoul. I don’t speak Korean, I don’t know the layout of the city, but thanks to many amazing blog articles, I knew what I was looking for and how to find it.

I realized that ignoring my blog has been a huge mistake. I have missed out on the opportunity to help so many people in the same way. I also know I haven’t had the best attitude, and at times I haven’t come across as grateful for the opportunities that I’ve been given, but I am. I am. Part of turning this around and getting back on track means I have to stop focusing on the bad and be thankful for the good.

And so, with my newfound free time, and developing positive perspective, I am finding myself wanting to move ahead as the person I was supposed to be– a traveller, a blogger, a bridge between cultures, a content creator. Not a TV personality, not a spectacle, nothing more than a single human being sharing her own discoveries with others.

Anyway, that’s the gist of it, but I don’t want to spend any more time talking about this.

I have posts to write, and I’m never going to move forward until I take the first steps.

So here we go. This is me in 2015. Yoroshiku.

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56 thoughts on “Start Over やり直し

  1. I’ve been following you for a few years now. I watched a lot of your old videos before I went to Tokyo to study. And when I got back from Tokyo I went through a very similar depression and closed myself off from the world. I just didn’t know what I was supposed to be doing anymore.
    I don’t actually know you, but I can say it’s really hard to pull yourself up. I’m still trying to get on my feet.
    Just wanted you to know that seeing your posts always makes me smile. I think you’re beautiful, talented, and an inspiration. A girl around my age doing so much.
    Keep your head up doll face!

    Jessica

  2. I’ve always found you a pretty amazing person to look up to, and this blog post is kind of reinforcing that. Take care of yourself and have more time dedicated to what you want and need this year. I’m glad you’re starting your blog up again as well, I always enjoyed it🙆💗 But always remember, you come first

  3. Thank you for being strong for yourself during the most unhappy phase in your life. I couldn’t tell that you’ve been in such situation not until you blogged it out. You are very strong as a person and a woman as well! Now that you’ve resume blogging, would like to hearfrom you more about your personal views on the world and living in a foreign country. You’re a very bright person so I wish you’ll be happy always🙂

  4. Back on track sometimes is the best way to find the way. Don’t worry and don’t let the darkness consume you even further. We are with you here and I will keep you in prayer.🙂

  5. I’ve only recently started to follow you here in the land of the Internet, but I have to say, I look up to you a lot. I admire that you persevered through the tough bits of media fame and handled yourself so well on the outside. Obviously, you were doing a lot of hurting on the inside, and I’m glad that you’re been upfront about it now. You don’t know how valuable just being yourself is until you have the freedom to do so. I’m looking forward to reading more and I’m happy to hear you’re healing 💖

  6. Welcome back. . I’ve watched your videos and read your posts sporadically over the time you have spent in japan and always enjoyed you sharing a slice of life in Japan. I hope you find yourself again and continue to share experiences some of us will never have . Noone can ever judge you in what you are doing for that very reason as you are living what many keyboard warriors wish they could. I look forward to more insights into life in Japan no matter what the subject

  7. Welcome back! I’m glad you’re coming back to blogging. It’s the most… permanent of the things we do online. Twitter’s great and makes people feel like you’re around, but it doesn’t do much to pass knowledge on to strangers, and you have a lot to give, as you said.

  8. Happy to see you blogging again.🙂 I’ll always be cheering for you! Seeing all the content you post, whether via facebook, twitter, instagram is seriously a real joy for me. You’re so real. If you ever decide to visit Norway, I’d be happy to show you around (I’m an American expat here!). and I’m always dreaming about visiting Japan again…I can see it vicariously through you!

  9. Welcome back .
    The mark of a great person is someone who has fallen, but pick themselves up and willing to get back on to the track.
    i ve been watching your videos for 4yrs now, I hope to continue to enjoy another 4yrs from you!

  10. I saw this came in my email, and I blinked a little wondering who it was. Thank you for sharing about your ups and down. It reminds me that everyone goes through it.

    Great to see you back!!

  11. I feel the same than you… For that… I want to say you… Don’t give up! You are a wonderful woman… Bad things happens, but you don’t give up! Hugs from Spain

  12. Heya!~
    Welcome back to the blogging world. I’m really glad to see you’re back and am really looking forward to the content you’ll create. :3

    I’m sorry to hear that you had such a hard time. Never really figured out it was THAT bad.
    I hope that the free time you’ve got now will help you recover and that you’ll find a new, hopefully healthier direction.😀 *hugs*

  13. You just had a taste of what being a star is like over there. Its good you have found your center.Be well, and if you can, try to reconnect with those people you met. And remember they came to you, so just be selective in what you choose to do.

  14. This is great that you share with us. You are being honest and not just showing a pretty image of yourself. Deep down inside you know what you want to do with your life, just listen to your heart. You are smart, smarter than people around you probably, which could be confusing for you because you are not always understood, you have no choice but listen to yourself, you can afford it, don’t worry.

    You are the boss,Micaela, the type of person who are leader, not follower, so start with leading yourself to what you want!

    Lot of love and kind thinkinks from an other part of the globe😉

    Elise.

  15. I can certainly understand how doing all of the media, and new media, things you do that this blog could easily suffer. I only have to do the blog and I find myself writing so infrequently these days.
    Welcome back to this, and I hope it provides a good outlet for you.
    Either way, I will continue to watch your videos and I look forward to what you will create in the future.

  16. I am glad you are back and Blogging. It hard sometime when you suffer with depression to focus on the good instead of the bad or to isolated yourself. I have been struggling with depression for a while sometime i find and other time i just can’t stand life ( i have only have a had a few times where i have act on it but thank god i have failed at it) I have to take medican and it has help a lot. I am glad you felt confutable letting us in and tell us something that some people wouldn’t share this. I can’t wait to see where your next venture takes you. good luck and lots of hugs. ^_^

  17. Ya know, there is nothing wrong with starting over. I’ve done it and am in the process of doing it again. I’m glad that you are back and can’t wait to get caught up on your adventures!

  18. Hey yo! Good job girly, as a mother and hopeful person in general I am looking forward to all the good things for your life. Bad this can feel overwhelming and people we love and once trusted can cause problems in our lives long after we thought we had moved on. So just remember, the blank faces but kind words of the internet are here for you. We love you very much and all of us hope the best for you. Thank you for returning to your blogs, you are the one who keeps drawing me to follow my dream of moving to Japan even though I have a small child and am married and close to 30 with no college. Vastly different from you but I know there are channels I can get there.

  19. You are a beautiful soul, both inside (even with dark Micaela) and out. We all go through phases in life as we learn to navigate our purposes, and despite what life has thrown in your direction, you handled them with grace, did what you needed to do regardless of what others thought, and now you have come back stronger than ever. You are where you need to be, and because of that, even more opportunities and things to be grateful for will wiggle their way into your life when you least expect it. You are truly an inspiration to many, and even to people who have and are going through life not sure there are good people left out there. They peek in on your life, love your personality, and simply wish they knew a person like you and mainly had a true soul like yours as a friend. I wish you luck overflowing as you restart. I’m so thrilled that you understand and appreciate you have people who have never even met you in person that you inspire even through your valleys and peeks in life. Good luck, and thank you for constantly making me happy on the inside, and smile on the outside ^_^❤

  20. Iam soo happy for you. I am happy to hear from you and now your all the stronger. Can’t wait for more

  21. Welcome back, Mic.🙂

    My heart hurts to know you went through so much suffering and pain. But I am happy that things are starting to level out. You have so many people all around the world who love and support you–myself included, all the way back home in Canada.❤

    I know we don't talk a lot, but I would love to talk to you more. I feel like I had a dark version of myself come out for a while before my hardest breakup, but I also believe that it was the best thing that has happened to me: the distance I allowed myself helped me to find my "light" side again. It helped me to realize what was important to me and what I held dear. I re-taught myself that I can be loved, that I was loved, self-worth, and so many other things… like sharing the love I had in me with so many others.

    If you need anything, please shoot me a line on email, Facebook, whatever. I'm excited to see you back.❤

  22. Hey Micaela,

    I want to welcome you back to the blogging world. I know that it must have been hard keeping everything together and keeping your inspirational attitude in your videos and everything else.

    You’ve always been someone I’ve looked up to. Even though I don’t you personally, watching you accomplish your dreams has helped inspire me to pursue my own. I’d like you to know that I actually find you even more inspirational now. I’ve been through depression myself before and I know it’s a big battle. I, myself, still have to deal with it, though it has gotten a whole lot better. To me, overcoming that is more inspirational than anything else you could do.

    I’m glad that your posting again. If you need someone to talk to, feel free to email or message me, I’m all ears. I know, stranger on the Internet, but I just want you to know that people care and are here for you.

    Good luck!

  23. Wow Michaela, this got me a little teary-eyed… thanks for this post. I’ve been feeling out of the loop for a while now and this is very inspiring. I’m trying to see the more positive things in life. Best luck in the future!

  24. im so sorry michaela to hear what you’ve been going through. reading your post resonated so much with me so much. it’s so inspiring to see you take back control of your life, and i can see from reading this post that you are a very brave and strong person. i just wanted to let you know that you’re definitely not alone in the struggles you’re facing, and you will get through this!!! we’re here for you!!!❤ lots of love.

  25. Welcome back!🙂 I’ve been watching your videos for years now (and occasionally reading your blog) so I’d already known some of the stuff/issues you’ve addressed here and I’m really glad things are finally getting better for you. Hang on tight and best of luck!❤

  26. Welcome back, I’ve been watching your videos for a year or more, and I didn’t know about your blog. If serves as a thing to think about, I’ve learned that life isn’t easy. Be nice is hard. Do what you like is harder. But we haven’t many choices: Or we live, or we die. So let’s make our life make sense in a positive way. I do prefer your brighter side, so let you light shine!

  27. This is excellent. For whatever reason, I had no idea you had a blog too.

    I just decided to take a 1 week break from blogging (after three years of updating 3-6 times a week). It’s liberating to get “me time” now – and it’s tempting to quit a bit (maybe a month…?) but I probably won’t. I don’t want to lose any momentum.

    IN ANY CASE, I just wanted to say that I think you’re pretty freaking amazing. I can’t imagine having that sort of public spotlight – radio, tv, etc. And I hope the transition back to blogging goes smoothly~

  28. Hey Micaela,
    I want to tell you I (and I guess a lot of other people since you get views on Youtube) think you are really good at what you do,I really like your videos and posts!
    I’m sorry to hear you had such an hard time during the last couple of years,
    I wish you the best for the future!
    : )

  29. From someone who has watched you from almost the beginning (so…probably 4-5 years?), I am SO HAPPY that you are happier now🙂 Your videos are what originally inspired me to start learning about Japan and Japanese, which then led to my interest in Korea, Korean, and now, an internship in Seoul. I feel like I’m watching a friend now whenever I see your videos and you, gunnarolla, or anyone else who travels and lives life as an adventure continues to inspire me to do the same (and even start sharing my experiences over blog and youtube). Keep up the awesome updates! And know that your fans are rooting for you every step of the way.

    PS- It looks like you had a great time in Seoul! Myeongdong is my favorite and I actually have fun with bartering now lol and my friends and I have nicknamed Samgyeopsal “Meat Candy”

  30. It has always surprised me how accurately can someone else relate to my situation. In this case, how I can. I am experiencing pretty much the same things you’re experiencing, not only because of the daily stress and relying on ‘auto – pilot’ as you called it, but also because a part of myself felt lost. And the reason for it was that I was the one who was giving in. All I can say is that, nothing is lost for you, or for me, or for whoever is experiencing the same. You’ll get through. Remember you’ve grown a whole family out of your life on the internet, and we’ll always be here to support you. I hope you can understand that and stop trying to carry the weight of the world on your own shoulders. You’ve got your ‘long-term partner’ who is there for you, Kit, us and of course many other people that care about you. You’re not alone and never will be.

    1. Yikes, you might need to re-read one part again. I left my “long term partner” a year and a half ago and he’s been harassing me ever since. ;P

  31. Welcome back! I’m so sorry you had such a difficult time, and I’m really glad to hear that you seem to be on the mend. Please don’t hesitate to reach out if there’s anything your followers can do to make you feel safe and supported, and I hope you have a support structure around you offline who can do the same.

  32. You’ve accomplished so much, though. I know it’s been stressful as hell, it’s just that sometimes we need tension and uneasy experiences in life to push us out of our comfort zone – sometimes we welcome this “push’, sometimes its timing is completely off

    These things happen to everyone, jobs and relationships don’t work out, sometimes we win, sometimes we lose. Anyone who has ever attempted to better their life knows that failure is a part of success.

    Your ex would do well to learn that this is life and nothing personal against him. Things, generally, don’t last forever and it’s like that with everyone.

    My favourite things about you have been when you’ve allowed yourself to be human, made that interesting Mujina Magica video, or that Beauty Pumpkin Tutorial or when you take a piss of Japanese culture which takes itself far far too seriously – hence Ufufufufu, and snarky sponsored by the dog Twitter comments or telling Korean h8ers to STHU is not totally warranted but also, human and its, frankly, great

    If you had a plan B that would exclude Japan, what and where would it be? I’d like to learn because I’m in a similar situation😛

    1. Well I’ve been trying to get myself out more, so I definitely want to travel. I’m thinking if I really need a break, I wouldn’t mind heading over to Thailand on a student visa and learning Thai while enjoying the nice weather and amazing food…🙂

      1. That’s a good plan! Then there’s also Hong-Kong and somewhat more respectable expats . Kinda like NYC but more expensive real-estate. Hit me up either way xytlix@gmail.com x

  33. I was wondering what happened with your ex etc but le’ts just forget about that ! Who am I to judge ? I myself has a psychologist😄 You are such a great inspiration !🙂 It’s okay to have up and downs, but please never forget that you are such a wonderful person and you are the one who decide the life you want, and the path you want to pursue.🙂
    Thank you for opening your heart to us as you did ! ^^

    I have been following you since ‘how to get a Japanese boyfriend’ video (lol) and I’ve been following you when you graduate from your semongakkou, when you were struggling with the JLPT, when on your instagram you put a picture of your father for father’s day and stuff and I really would like to say thank you !🙂 -it sounds a bit creepy now that I read myself again XD-

    I know that living in Japan is not wonderland, but after studying Japanese for 6 years I will finally be able to become an exchange student in Osaka from next september.🙂

    Thanks to such inspirational person as you, even if my parents are reluctant too I want to know how far I can deal with Japanese culture and be able to do my own mistakes there…

    Have a a nice and brightening day

    PS : A lot of my friends in uni said that Sharla in Japan is a “new Micaela” because you are both Canadian both in Japan but NO WAY ! I respect both of you but maybe because I start to follow you first I feel more connected to you🙂

    PPS : Désolée… English is not my mother tongue and I am sure that there are plenty mistakes up there😦 I hope you will be able to understand :s

  34. Micaela, You are a peaceful warrior ! I honor your courage and honesty , I started to follow you recently after I have met your mother in Huatulco in Mexico, about 5 weeks ago. I totally understand you . I admire who you are and that you have the balls to keep on moving forward . I also have to say that its important to accept the depression completely in order to be able to completely move away from it . Believe me I am in a pretty similar boat ..

    As I am going myself through a slump after filming the Wonders of Mexico on my own within the last 6 months, https://www.facebook.com/Adventures.of.Globetrotter.BillMacallister?ref=settings now its times for me to blog about it , I have to admit that I neglected my fanpage as I had no smart phone and very often no computer access I kept all those memories and experiences in my camera and for myself . SO I feel completely alone with myself and dont know how to keep the adventure alive . I have to say that With almost no financial support I had to constantly push the limit to keep on filming the wonders and I have to say that without faith, courage and especially the generosity of all the Mexicans, it would have been impossible. God s presence in my life made some miracles to make everything possible . And its time for me to be grateful , I mean REALLY and completely be grateful .

    I wish you to keep on going with courage and love !

    All the best !

    Eric

  35. Welcome back! I’m so excited to see that you’re updating again! Can’t wait to see what kind of new content you’ll be posting. I’m sorry to hear that things have been so hard on you though. I hope everything continues to get better for you.🙂

  36. Just recently subscribed to your youtube channel, sorry to hear about what happened in the past year or so.

    Japan is a very interesting place to visit and your blogs make it even more interesting!
    I wish i could visit japan in the future ヾ(@⌒ー⌒@)ノ

    Do you have plans to visit other countries? Australia perhaps?

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