Every year I attempt to help a lot of people. I throw myself against the drawbridge, using everything I've got, from Trojan Horses to trebuchets, rows of archers to banner men. And every single year, there are many who defeat me. They move on from the siege not any better, informed, enlightened, or engaged. In fact, I was laughing with a colleague on a walk yesterday (yes! yes! move that junk!) wondering how many pregnant women I could get mad at me this year, though seriously, it's such low-hanging fruit. So far I'm 2.5/4.0. Not that the .5 is a 'little bit pregnant' cause we all know that can't happen, but I think the .5 was a little put-out with me. Pregnant women are kind of cranky.
Anyway, I was put in the position of defending the indefensible, because this other co-worker did not see any progress I was making. From the ripped pages of a scathing e-mail, the pregnant co-worker told me that what I had done all year was for nothing. It made no difference, and in her estimation, was a complete waste of time. Of course the e-mail was sent to several colleagues too, and I imagined this witches' chorus of "Who does she think she is, that she doesn't have to follow the rules?" My recourse? Two things: one, reply all thanking her for her input, and that again I apologized on behalf of this individual. Second, a private e-mail stating that she is to never write an e-mail like that to me again, and that indeed, this person had made great strides, and any positive impact, however minor, was still positive. I said good-day, sir.
So, I read Bear's post. I think it was about a podcaster who did some jerky things. And then he posted a follow-up about community , which is lovely. This has been on my mind a lot too, lately. When I log into Azeroth, I am making a conscious choice about not doing something else. It's no secret I adore my time in this fantasy world. In this world, I can be as corrupt, as courageous, as confident or as cantankerous as I choose. The biases of choice steer toward my natural self, however, and I tend to choose 'kind-hearted' and affectionate. I try to be funny, too.
The community is as expansive and inclusive as any. There are bloggers, writers, educators, thinkers, philosophers who inspire and enlighten me on a daily basis. Their writing supersedes the realm of Azeroth, and I take it with me all day. If there is anyone who has shut me out, I try to look on the positive side, think about it cognitively, and assume that it's because they have other things or ideas they want to explore, and my input isn't required. That's cool. I can't be all things to all folks -- I've tried, and it's exhausting. The world is more welcoming than not, from my experience.
But we are all part of the daily business of life, too, and I would wager that many of us are simply spending time in a fantasy because it is just that: a fantasy. In this world, I am beautiful. In this world, I am strong, and a fighter. I am a queen, and a warrior. Most of all--I am a friend. There is not a single soul out there who isn't carrying something heavy. And if the time I spend in Azeroth lightens the burden for those I love, in any small dose, if they carry in their pockets the knowledge that I don't judge, I take care and respect with someones burdens, and joys, and cheer the small victories. And you know, it's funny, when I think about it. Those in my real and virtual worlds are the ones who are fully aware that they want to be in control of their destinies through the power of choice. They want me around, and I want to be here, too. Thank you for having me.
Postscript: Theme Song - We are the world...of Warcraft...