Wednesday, April 27, 2011

A Confession

I haven't been totally open. I've had a problem stepping out of the World of Warcraft and into the real world. I know that I don't want my life to be centered around video games anymore. But for some reason every few weeks I think that I want to still play WoW. So I'll log in (resubscribe if I have to) and play for a day. Then within the next few days I totally regret it, and uninstall the damn thing again. Then a few days later I transfer it back to my computer from the husband's (he never gets around to uninstalling!). I don't know why I do this, I think it's because I panic about failing in the real world and want to go back to my crutch, even if it's just for a day or a few hours. It's especially bad if something stressful happens, I freak out and the idea of losing myself in a fake world seems pretty tempting.

My last trip into WoW was this weekend, Saturday night I transferred it over and by Monday I had uninstalled it again. This time was different though. I met someone this month that I became pretty good friends with in game. She's a lot like me personality wise, but a few years older. She shares my feelings about the game, but she's not ready to leave it yet. Seeing her was a lot like seeing myself a year or so ago. Hating the game, but still wanting to play all the time for some reason. She's nearing 30 and has no plans for marriage or kids, despite having the man and the desire for both. She's educated and jobless. A huge part of all that I know, partly from experience, is from playing. It's obviously her choice to do what she wants, but it made me so sad to see someone who could be doing amazing things stuck in this game. And the worst thing is that I knew if I stopped playing, I'd probably never talk to her again. It's so hard to talk to people who are currently playing. It's like trying to communicate with someone in space, what can you discuss? "Well, I went to the store today and bought milk." "I floated around in outer space. Isn't that awesome?" It's two different planes of existence.

By Monday night I knew I was done. I was so tired of disappointing myself, and all the stress that quitting and then playing was putting on me. I logged off fully intending to quit. I called the husband and told him, and he said it was fine because he was bored already himself. Usually when I would "quit" I wouldn't inform anyone. Most of my in game friends have quit, or I've just lost touch with them. So I'd just log off quietly and plan on never coming back. This time I thought of my friend. I logged back on, and told her I was quitting. She told me that quitting was one of the best things you could ever do, although she was sad to see me go. I traded her all of my stuff, gold and everything and exchanged e-mails (although I doubt I'll ever hear from her!). The most important thing I did though: strip my account of all of my information that I could. And remove my authenticator, and change both the e-mail and password to something I'll never remember offhand. Then I tossed my authenticator in the trash. Every other time I quit I never got rid of my stuff or changed my email address. It was like I was expecting to come back, or just wanted my stuff there in case I did want to come back. But now I know that gold and gear are just pixels, and once you realize there's nothing special about them it doesn't feel like a big loss to get rid of them.

So, I confess that I hadn't really fully quit WoW yet. I thought I had, but I kept going back. Monday, April 25, I quit for real. And I've never felt so free in my life. The best part? I had a terrible, stressful day on Tuesday and I didn't even feel an urge to go back.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

What I missed

Things I missed when I played WoW:
-eating real, fresh cooked food
-the simple joy of listening to music that touches your soul
-spending time with real people
-feeling the sun, rain, or wind on my skin
-being alive
-dressing up for no reason
-pampering myself
-giving my pets the attention they deserve
-giving my husband the attention he deserves
-talking to people who aren't WoW zombies
-time not flying by me

More to be added if I think of any :-P What did you miss the most when you played?


I don't have the best relationship with Jake's parents. They don't understand me (fair enough, sometimes I don't either!) and have different priorities than I do. My family was never that close so I'd see them maybe once a year, the in-laws want to see us every holiday. It would be fine if it was just us, but it's a headache to load up all the dogs and take them with us, and then they have to stay outside the whole time we're there. It's also extremely expensive to board three dogs their size. So most of the time I get Jake to go alone, I hate being away from him but it's just the easier choice. His parents don't get that our dogs are part of the family, we don't want to leave them outside all the time. Every time they visit us they seem to mention that our dogs are too big to be inside and they should be outside dogs. Sure they're bigger than most inside dogs, but there are advantages to having big dogs. You can actually hug them, they bark loud enough to scare away any potential robbers, they don't bark constantly like little yappy dogs, and they tend to be easier to train just to name a few.

Last weekend the in-laws came to visit us. Surprisingly it didn't go horribly. Jake's mother was actually nice and we chatted for awhile, not just sat in awkward silence. The best part about them coming to visit is Jake's father fixes stuff around the house. This time they fixed our outside faucet, pulled two bushes out that we wanted removed, and gave us their old fridge (which was still about 20 years newer than our old one). The new fridge is awesome, we have an ice maker! I've never had one before haha. All said it was a decent visit for once. It makes me think maybe his family might actually accept me. Or at least put up with me because Jake doesn't plan on getting rid of me!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Video games

When I played WoW, I played on a few RP servers for a time. I never really RPed but I have always had an RP mindset. When I played WoW, or any other video game for that matter, I sort of see myself as that character. I'd keep outfits that I liked the look of, have a mount that matched my character... I think that's why I've always had such a hard time turning off the WoW. My characters were like part of me, or maybe I was part of my characters. The first time I ever remember feeling like that was on Zelda for the Super Nintendo. Link was male, but I felt connected to the character. I was out to save the world and the princess, I was the hero! It's hard to be a hero in the real world. It's hard to do something so noteworthy, to do something that no one else has done. It's a lot harder to save people in the real world. And some of them don't even really want to be saved.

I'm kind of a control freak. I'm not bitchy about it, or at least I try not to be, but I like when things are just right. What makes them just right? I have no idea, I just know when it feels right. Like snapping a puzzle piece into the right place. You ever watch a movie or read a book where someone does something so just wrong? And you want to scream at the TV or book and tell them they're doing it wrong. But you have no control over those people, or people in everyday life for that matter. I think that's one of the things I like most about video games. Sure, you have to follow a story line, but you get to decide how you do that. I like games where you can be evil or good, and it effects the world around you. If only you could see that happening in the real world more often, it would make our decisions feel more important. But the best thing about video games outside of WoW is that I can turn them off. Only WoW seems to make me want to play all day, every day. That's not even the worst thing about WoW though; when you play it, it makes the real world seem dull. Like putting on a dark pair of sunglasses, or blinders. It makes me sad to think about all of the people still lost in that maze. There's nothing even waiting for them in the middle or on the other side besides a whole lot of wasted time and energy. I talk about WoW a lot in my blogs. I guess it helps me to think about where I'm going when I ponder where I'm coming from.

Friday, April 8, 2011


I love Fridays. It's the last day of the work week for Jake so I know I get two uninterrupted days with him. We actually have some plans for this weekend, nothing too exciting but it feels good to have plans that don't consist of getting all the chores done so we can play MMOs all weekend. We bought the game Wipeout for Wii that we're planning on trying. It's Jake's favorite TV show so I figured it was worth getting! We have a bunch of yard work to do, if we can squeeze it in in between the rain. And maybe a walk or two!

Last Sunday there was a pretty intense thunderstorm here. We lost electricity for a few hours, and we were able to watch the electric company mess with some of the wires from our bedroom wire. A few cars went down that way, stopped, then eventually turned around. We checked the day after and there was a huge tree that fell over in a neighbor's yard. It knocked down a pole, which was blocking the road, which explains why no one could get through that way! The tree is massive though, and the guy is lucky that it didn't land on his house. I wonder if you have to pay for replacing the line if a tree in your yard falls over? I'd hope not, you can't really control it! I should have taken pictures of it but it didn't really occur to me until I started typing about it! Plus I wouldn't really want people taking pictures of my house and posting them online haha.

I've been taking Reeses on a short walk every other day. I think I might start doing every day soon though, and increasing the distance slowly. I'm trying to increase his mobility in his back leg. When we were too busy playing WoW I liked to pretend that we were great pet owners. But although we made sure they were fed and such we didn't give them the attention they deserved. One of my biggest regrets is that we didn't do enough to help with Reeses' leg problem. I should have been walking him every day since we found out about it. Instead, I just played WoW and ignored the problem. That's not fair to him, nor is it fair to our other pets to be ignored most of the time. It just makes me sad to think it came to that, I love our pets and they deserved better. I intend to do my best to make sure they get it from now on.

I made lasagna today. I used fresh onion and garlic, which I usually don't. In fact, I've never chopped an onion before today. I used to think it was silly when people talk about how onions make you cry. Yeah, it's definitely not silly. It's so not very fun, and I think I've discovered that I wasn't meant to be a chef! I did a pretty terrible job of chopping the onions, but the lasagna tastes amazing. A tip I learned from looking up how to modify my recipes to include fresh onions and garlic instead of minced: while cooking the sauce for the last 1/2 hr stick the uncooked noodles in a pan of very hot water. It's much easier to work with the noodles like that than cooked ones, and they finish cooking in the oven. Plus boiling lasagna noodles is always a headache, they're huge and you have to be careful not to break them.

I bought a paint by number kit the other day. Sounds silly, but my sister used to do them all the time when we were younger. I never really tried them, and I was hoping doing so would spark my passion for painting again. I was never really that great at painting, but there's something so amazing about the feel of a brush across canvas. I used to use oil paints, but now I kind of want to try acrylic as well. Either way I'm definitely going to buy some canvas at some point and hope I come up with something half way decent! I also kind of want to try my hand at a mosaic again. When I was in HS I made a faux glass window type mosaic, using those colored pebbles used for fake plants on a large sheet of Plexiglas. It didn't turn out as good as I wanted it to, but it was really fun designing it and working on it. I feel a lot more creative now that I've quit MMOs. Sort of like the old me coming back to life again.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Thinking is hard

Since getting MMOs out of my system again, I've been doing some thinking. I'm turning 26 in two months, which may not seem that old. But I feel old, I look at people of the younger generation and I just don't understand them. My birthdays are never a good thing, I didn't have many friends growing up so my birthdays meant a stressful day of wondering if anyone was going to show up to my party. I remember one birthday, no one did show up (besides family). My mom felt so bad for me that she took me out to the movies that night, and although it hurt knowing I wasn't important enough for any of my "friends" to show up, that was probably one of my best birthdays. It also made me realize that you can't count on most people, and those that you can count on should be cherished.

But I'm getting older every year, and I wasted 6 years on WoW so it feels like I missed a huge part of my adult life already. When I was younger I didn't know if I wanted to have children. My father was abusive to my mother before he died when I was 5 or so. My mother worked evenings and nights all the time (a nurse) so I didn't get to see her much. My step-father spent most of his time with his own kids, so we didn't really have a great environment growing up. It's hard to blame my mom, because she had to work to pay for all of us (3 of her own kids, 3 step kids and later on 2 more children with the step-father). I think growing up I felt sort of expendable. But with that background I wasn't sure if I'd be a good mother or if I even wanted to bring a child into the world. As I get older though, I know I probably do. It scares the crap out of me, but I think I'd be missing something if I don't. I don't know if I'll be a good mother, and we have so many pets right now it will be a struggle and a half to keep them away from the child, but I do want to have one at some point. Preferably before I turn 30!

I've been doing some thinking about where my life is and where I want it to go. When we moved into our house almost four years ago I was too addicted to WoW to do much else. I had quit my job when we moved because it was part time and the hours wouldn't make up the cost of gas for the hour drive there. I also was fired from my other job at the same time, because my boss was always trying to get me to fill in for him and I couldn't do it for a month or two because of finalizing house stuff and moving. That was the only job I've ever been fired from, and although I know I didn't really do anything wrong it still made me feel terrible, like I failed. So when we moved I just lost myself in WoW, I didn't look for a new job. Well I did but there wasn't really anything out there. So I stopped trying. I don't really want to work, but I need to. I want to find a part time job and work for a few years before we try for a baby. I want to have as much debt as we can paid off so I can stay home then. I need to stop moping around thinking about MMOs and get back to living. I don't want to be in my 30s or 40s when I have a child if at all possible. So right now my goal is to job hunt, and spend a lot of my free time working on a book. Maybe by the time I do decide to try for a child I'll be able to have something published! It may not happen, but it feels good to have a plan anyway.