A long, long time ago, I was a gamer.
I was not a video gamer, or a hardcore gamer, or an import gamer. I was a gamer.
I played board games of all sorts (with a particular love of German-style board games). I played video games (role-playing games, first-person shooters, platformers, RTS games, turn-based strategy games, action games, fighting games, stealth games, massive multiplayer online RPGS, puzzle games, music and dancing games, arcade games). I played collectible card games. I played strategy games. I played table-top role playing games. I played word games. Party games. Card games. Dice games. Story games. All games.
I love games, and for many reasons. They can keep your mind and reflexes sharp. They can teach you etiquette, the value of losing, how to be a gracious winner. They can actually help you succeed. Learning a new game can be stimulating, fun, and challenging. There is something to be sad about the thrill of a hard-won victory. But what I love the most about games is the socialization. I've made great friends over a game of Catan and learned more about my friends through a card game than I ever would have learned otherwise. We would develop inside jokes all around different games that we love.
This is, however, mostly in the past. I just have to admit it. After the move, I don't have time to play games, and I haven't been able to find people to play with. I have to focus on writing in my sparse free-time. Part of me is very sad to realize this. Knowing when to put things aside is part of being an adult, and putting my kid's needs and wants before my own is part of being a parent. But I feel that part of who I am is being suppressed.
I am an avid ex-gamer. I still keep up with what is going on in the gaming world, but I keep my distance. I know that I do not have the time or money to spend on games, even games I would not only love to play, but to work for. I browse the game section of stores and go into game parlors. There are a few games I will hopefully still be able to play once in a while, but for the most part, this is something, like anime and slap bracelets, in my past. Perhaps when Addy is older I will show her how to play Carcassonne or Agricola.
Or, perhaps, I will be able to find friends here by looking for other gamers. I'll never be as prodigious as I once was, but that's alright. To me, writing is like a game of solitaire, so a few social games once in a while would be a good way to balance things out. I am realizing that time is a precious commodity that you never have enough of, so I need to be picky about how I use my free time. All I can really do is learn to roll with the punches life sends my way.