Geez, okay, well. I have no idea how to start this. It's so jarring actually sitting down and typing here again. I mean, it has been seven years since the last time that happened. But I'm here for a different number, actually: 10! 10 years since I first discovered and made my account here on Virtuadopt. I was 10 years old when I joined. I am 20 years old. That just hasn't sunk in with me, and I honestly don't think it's going to.
Deep down, I know it was something I always would have done; I was always going to be a curious kid obsessed with knowing everything there is about my interests, I was always going to love pokemon, I was always going to love the older games and the glitches thereof, and I was always going to crawl through the Serebii forums for the sake of knowledge. My odds of stumbling across a moderator's post with her virtuadopts linked in her signature and clicking those links were stacked in my favor.
Now, that probably sounds silly; why on Earth would I be making such a fuss about this? Why is joining a random pokemon adoptables forum important? Well, in sticking around here, I would learn everything I know now about art and writing and computers and even just the barest necessities of being a person. Virtuadopt shaped, entirely, the person I am today. All of the good things and bad things that happened here, all of the good and bad people that I met, especially at such a formative age, have created me for exactly who I am. I met the person I would consider a soulmate here; I met the best friend I could have in my entire life; I met friends and curiosities from all over the world. Not only that, but being here taught me nearly everything I learned and put me so far ahead of everyone else at that age. I doubt I would have ever gotten the chance to hone my skills and put them to work in any other way; a literal child does not often have these opportunities, after all. And all of those friends I made, even if it's been years since I last heard of them--there's only one person I still talk to every day, after a decade--they all made such a profound mark on my life, and I tell stories about them all the time.
What I'm saying, is just... as a kid who never felt like they had a place in the world, and so often felt outcasted and different, VA was my hometown. (No, not Virginia, I'm talking about Virtuadopt.) This was a good place for me to grow up, especially around people from so many walks of life and parts of the world, and although nobody is here anymore that I once knew, I want to thank them. Maybe they'll see it someday. I want to thank all of them for being patient with me, and teaching me so much. I know a lot of adults my age harken back to being "raised by the internet," and by god if that wasn't me too.
There's a lot more I want to go into, but don't really have the words for right now. I just wanted to write this down, for myself, on this day. I plan to come back to this and add some things, and maybe I will. I dunno! I'm really, really grateful that Virtuadopt is still here; I'd come and check on it every once and a while hoping and praying that it was still around, and I'm very deeply impressed that this forum has stood the test of time. If there is any way I can contribute to keeping a place so dear to me afloat (are there any ads to click, perhaps?) I'd love to know. <3
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