by moonlight Picture

Some time ago, TamashiiHiroka (a YouTuber I follow who made the PKMN trainer class videos I referred to here and there) made a very touching video for PKMN's 20th telling her story with Pokemon, how she'd escape to the world of Pokemon when things were dark in her life. My story with Sailor Moon is almost the same, sooooo...feels and nostalgia ahead! X'D

I was about 6 when I first saw Sailor Moon. Like a lot of kids from the late 80's to early 90's, it was my first real intro to anime, and is the main reason I'm an artist today - I'd draw her and her friends all the time, and some people thought I had a talent for it, encouraging me to keep drawing. Like Tamashii, I'd get a lot of trouble at home and school for my love of anime, games, drawing, etc. It'd hurt and make me sad, but I ultimately didn't care - all that stuff fed my imagination, and helped me daydream almost constantly. With my head lost in the clouds, none of that dark reality stuff could hurt me for too long (for a time). Along with stuff like going outside in the woods and fields, or playing with the few friends I had, that's what largely helped me stay smiling when I was little, living in that secret moonlit world.

I really identified with Sailor Moon back then. People were always picking on her, too, whether for her hair, her grades, her interests (which were largely the same as mine), or some other short-fall (they said) she had...but even then, I think I could see that she was still very loved by her friends, who saw her true kind, sweet, and heroic nature under all that. In spite of her many weaknesses, she'd find the courage to beat monsters and save her loved ones, sometimes having to do it all alone when things looked bleakest. I saw it on the American dub on TV, but more so on my untranslated Japanese tapes of Super S and Stars I cherished the short time I had them: she once traveled barefoot with no powers through a giant blizzard and a giant mess of thorns to save her boyfriend and future daughter. As cheesy as it is to say, she showed the strength love and kindness can give a person. I wanted strength. I wanted it so badly it hurt. I looked for it elsewhere for a long time, but as an adult, I can say one of my better sources was that silly, sweet Japanese girl with the weird sailor outfit.

Sometimes, I'd just get up and look at the moon when things were dark, painful, and scary. Sailor Moon did it a lot after all, usually when conflicted, confused, or about to go fight some big evil. I'd feel comforted and calm, if just enough to keep going. I'd pray or cry sometimes while moon-gazing; the moon never punished or mocked me for doing either, not even for being angry. Obviously it can't, being a big space rock that mainly just moves the oceans, but looking at it, it doesn't surprise me that Mary is portrayed with/as the moon - it felt motherly somehow. I don't have much of a view of the moon from my apartment, but I keep a painting I made of a moonlit beach next to my bed to help me rest for another day, good or bad.

I moved on to many other things to daydream about, but once in a while through the years, I'd look up a Sailor Moon video to watch online, and remember. I don't know if it made the same impression on me as Pokemon did for Tamashii, but I'd say I learned a lot from Sailor Moon, from my talent in art, a love of anime and Japan, an interest in space and old mythology, to just silly little life lessons like eating more fruits (because they're delicious!). It's really a pretty silly and sometimes plain weird mahou shoujo, but it has an imperfect girl who did amazing and heroic things by moonlight.

And that's good enough for me.
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