I just finished a great book that talked about fear and how people affected you such as your friends, your family and even your lovers. It was thought provoking and profound. It made me think about my own life and of life in general. Riding off that high, I decided to send off an email to an author and post a few book reviews.
Then I decided to check Twitter and reading through my messages as well as the latest tweets. I came across a tweet saying something like this "read my blog post about how this game changed my life." I was struck with a thought. How did Wizard101 affect my life? Then I thought, should I even write a blog post about this? I didn't know. I was torn because I'm incredibly private. I'm not the type of person who writes autobiography books to make people laugh and weep at the screw ups and hard learned lessons in their lives.
I might seem a very open minded person, very blunt and not afraid to lay down my thoughts for everyone to read. I am still incredibly private. It's funny. I feel like it's incredibly rude to talk about my private life when I'm not the only one who has had hurdles in life to go over. Why should I talk about it? It's like showing off. I don't ever want to think that I have had "worse" problems than anyone else because I don't. Yes, they were horrible. But I'm sure somewhere out there, in fact I KNOW, there are people with worse problems.
But Wizard101 did change my life in a small way that was profound. It's funny that sometimes it's the simplest things that makes the biggest impacts. So I thought deeply about it. It's the evening before my birthday. I wasn't even sure if it was even the right time. Even writing this, I feel incredibly nervous and unsure.
Then I realized, that MAYBE, just maybe, it would be an interesting story. Minor story. But still interesting nevertheless. I always loved interesting stories. And telling them. Maybe I'll simply make them simple. That way they're minor enough that it does not compete with anyone else. I have worse stories than the ones below, so it should be okay. So here it is.
The major things I have learned from Wizard101 is that you can't avoid your real life probems by playing a game. It will still find you in-game and vice versa. It's true.
When Words Hurt
I was new to MMORPG games when I first played Wizard101. In fact, Wizard101 was my very first MMORPG game ever. My first friend in game was deaf and I thought that was the neatest thing. She was very kind and sweet. But, I have come to learn that not all people are nice.
You see, I met this guy in Wizard101. His name was Joshua. Josh I called him. My friend begged me to "double date" in Wizard101. She was "dating" this guy in game, Junior, and Junior had a best friend, Josh. They both knew that we were deaf. I was hesistant because I did not believe in forming relationships in game. Heck, I was having the same problems in real life. For some reason, I attract jerks. But I said okay because it was online and maybe I just was being a wuss about it. But I took my time. It took me maybe three, four months to finally loosen up. Still I felt funny. I thought that I was just being guarded as I always am like in real life. I didn't realize that my gut was trying to tell me something.
Eventually I understood why. We were in this dungeon, the Briskbreeze tower dungeon I believe. Back then, it was Helephant Tower tough. After all this was like 2010. Anyway, for a while, I was talking about setting up a site and doing guides. And I added a page filled with pictures of my friends that I met in game. He actually demanded that I remove all male friends from it. I said no, they're my friends. Why would I do that? "Because I said so," he said. Notice he said "MALE friends." This was a constant topic with him. He was so odd. Anyway, I ignored him. Then a week or so later, we are in this tower, fighting. As a team, we end up in the room of the very final battle. It was me, my friend, Josh and his best friend, Junior. We ran into the battle ring. All of us went in except for Josh. He stayed outside of the ring, refusing to come in, even though we begged him. Back then you couldn't finish the last battle with less than four people.
Suddenly, Josh started to taunt me. He would call me names. Say vile things. You don't need to cuss to say mean things. His own best friend, who is his real life best friend too by the way, told him to chill out. Junior said that he did not understand what's wrong with him. That he was wrong to do that. But sitting there stuck in the battle ring, I had to listen to his words. I cried. I suddenly realized that even fighting it, I cared. I didn't want to care for this guy. But I thought he was a friend.
We all fled the dungeon. We all were disgusted by his behavior. Once I was out, I was strong enough to delete all of his characters and tell Junior not to ever let him around me again. He promptly agreed. My friend was extremely sorry about the whole thing. But it made me realize something. I'm glad that I found the strength to tell him to pretty much to get out of my life. But what about others who couldn't? Don't ever think that it's okay if someone taunts you because they're angry. It's wrong. He taunted me because he was jealous, possessive and angry. That's a dangerous combination. If you ever meet anyone like that, run for your life. I mean it. It never ends well. To this day, I will not form a relationship online. But I do admire those who did and was successful at it. It just pays to be careful those days. You never know.
But I realized that day that I should trust my gut instinct more. If it says that there's danger, I should run. If yours say the same about anyone, run like heck.
When In Game Collides With Real Life
And another major event happened 6 months later after the above event. This time it was good, in a bittersweet way. Painful bittersweet way.
I met this girl, Destiny, at a PvP party in Wizard101. She was such a sassy thing that I couldn't help, but laugh. I thought to myself, there's something about this one. We became instantly friends. Every day, we talked, we played, and we had fun. We never fought. To this day, we still NEVER fought. We had conversations. We are very logical people. I appreciated that.
I had so much fun with her in-game then I would go over to a real life best friend's house. Then I started to see things I didn't see before. You see, me and my real life friend, we argued every day. It was a massive give and take. It was always rocky. Don't get me wrong, I loved her. She was my sister of the heart. But it was stressful. Massively stressful.
So anyway, after playing in-game, I would go over my best friend's house and notice that our friendship was not the same. Not anymore. It used to be easy going, happy, and simple just like it was in game with Destiny. Now my best friend is always being on her phone, on her laptop, ignoring me. Not wanting to watch a movie or two with me. Then only speaking to me if she needed advice or needed something from me. Otherwise, we were fighting. Then I would go home and talk to this great girl in-game who I felt happy with. I realized at that moment, I actually forgot how happy felt. Until Destiny. I had this instant realization how a friendship should be. It should make you feel happy. My real life friend did not.
It's incredibly sad to think I actually thought to myself, "Oh, so this is what happy is. This is normal? Oh wow, I don't think I remember the last time I was happy." That said a lot.
It's such a strange feeling to realize that years passed by and a friendship changed without you realizing it. It was also strange when you realize a stranger online made you happy, more happy, than your own real life best friend. It was also extremely sad and painful. Looking back now at the early days of the friendship between my best friend and I, man it was great. We were happy, we just wanted to have fun and we laughed every day. I don't know what happened to those days. But I told my best friend about it. We tried to fix the friendship for the next few years. We tried to find our happy place again.
Fast forward, another 6 months or a year later. I find out that Destiny lied to me. She's not a girl, he's a young teenage boy. I totally understood, I forgave, but no we weren't the same ever since. We still talk though, barely. But I was still glad for the friendship because no matter what happened, the friendship was real. It was born from two people who were searching for something and found it in each other. I think he was looking for stability and I think I was looking for the same. All we wanted to do was laugh and have good times. If something bad happened in real life, we brushed it away and did something fun together instead. We would quest, pvp, and did so many things in Wizard101. Man those were the best years of Wizard101. Yep, they were the golden years for me.
Again, fast forward a year or two later, I become fed up with my real life friend and had another fight. This time I walked out. I wanted to find my happy place without her. We haven't talked since. And that was three years ago. Suddenly I was alone after all of those years.
Even though I knew this girl since I was 16 years old, more than 15 years of friendship gone, I was really left with no choice but to leave my only friend. There is a LOT more details about what happened within those 15 years with my best friend that I will not get into. But it was incredibly damaging to my self esteem. Sometimes you got to cut your losses. People do change, and so do friendships. I don't blame myself at all. Life happens. I just have to remember that from now on, I need to keep my eyes open and not be blind to those around me again.
The Finish Line
The whole point of this post is that friendships and/or relationships online can be scary. It doesn't matter which game you're playing. It can happen anywhere, any game you choose to play. It can be dangerous, but it also can be amazing. It can teach you a lot about yourself and other people. I know it did me. It actually helped me grow, even though it was painful at times. Today, I can definitely say that I'm much stronger. I'm a lot more confident, happy and sure of what I want. I'm also a lot more determined to keep my happiness. I will not let anyone take away my happy. Not anymore.
So don't let anyone take away your own happy. If you don't have a happy, make your own. Even if you are alone.
How Did Wizard101 Change My Life Reviewed by The Fabulous K on Monday, January 04, 2016 Rating: