Identity Crisis

23 Sep

i·den·ti·ty cri·sis 

n.

A period of confusion concerning an individual’s sense of self and role in society, which occurs most frequently in the transition from one stage of life to the next. It is often expressed by isolation, negativism, extremism, and rebelliousness.

With the release of Cataclysm looming upon us, I find myself bombarded by questions.  Will my guild continue to remain a 25 man guild or will we break down into a few groups of 10?  Will I stay with this guild that I’m quite pleased with and that I have seen a lot with or give it all up for a more low key, personal experience with several friends who have tossed out the idea of forming their own guilds?  Do I want to keep levelling O on the beta or should I finally cave and make a premade level 85 to test out the Heroics with and other incoming new content? 

Which brings me to O.  Make no mistake about it – I am O.  It’s funny – before I played WoW, I used to LARP and somehow I ended up on an RP server (RPPVP, no less) and I never once considered O and I to be one in the same.  But the more I think about it, the more I realize that I have been through a lot of shit with this toon.  I was a 23 year old smut peddling redhead, living in my first apartment when I first started playing her – not to mention that O was a male, at first.  I had this weird issue with the female Tauren appearance and didn’t actually change her over until Blizzard released the paid gender changes, shortly after the release of WoTLK.

I have certainly come a long way since then.  I’m 27 now, with a loft apartment, deadlines and black hair.  Through it all, I’ve done all of these things with O.  She’s been there for everything.  Now I’m at a point where I can’t help but wonder if it’s time to move on and time to be something else, to reflect where I’m at now and where I’ve been – to take all those things I have learned and to put them to good use.  To really go forward with a clean slate and not be tied down by who I was or the things I’ve done or what I’ve seen or didn’t get to see.  It feels like it has run its course and like it might be time to move on.   

After three years, I’m contemplating changing my main.

I attempted a re-roll once before – to an elemental shaman.  I took a three month break from the game, somewhere between the end of ToGC and the debut of ICC, to get used to my new job that I had just started and to get some real life affairs in order.  I was burnt out from raiding and from coming off of two bad experiences with guilds I had tried to join and that ended up being nothing like I thought they would be.  I took a shaman alt I had laying around, threw some heirlooms at her and levelled quietly on another realm, just minding my own business and throwing lightning bolts at things.  It was nice, peaceful and involved absolutely no stress.  No farming for mats, no reading up on boss fights, no logging on to raid when I didn’t want to.  I was having fun again!

After healing my way through everything up to this point, I thought if I became a DPSer, I might re-discover my love for the game and it might inspire me to want to play more seriously again.  I joined a guild, run by some real life friends of mine and they gave me a chance to run with them and to see what I thought of how the other side lived.  I had fun, up to a point – but I didn’t like how I felt in a DPS role.  It brought out a very insecure, competitive side of me and I can honestly say that I never felt satisfied with my performance, the whole time I was doing it.  I never felt good enough.  I would literally spend hours splicing the logs and the meters, trying to find that elusive solution to how I could squeeze out that much more DPS or why that person did better than me or what have you. 

That made me realize that healing is something I’m sort of meant to do and the role I feel most confident playing and I should probably stick with that – so I did.  I went back to my niche and traversed my way through ICC and through previous instances I hadn’t fully scoured or explored yet.  Then the early details of Cataclysm were released and almost from the beginning, the outlook wasn’t good.  Respected authorities in the druid community were even showing open concern with the direction that our class and our various specs were headed to.  The general consensus was that we were headed towards a not so nice place.

Like others that were feeling discouraged by what we were reading and seeing, I began to quietly plan for the worst – the idea that druids would be changed beyond a point where I would recognize my class or where I would feel useful in that role anymore.  It started off being just something I debated from a character aspect.  I didn’t have a personal stake in it – it was all about the mechanics.  But the more I thought about it, the more I looked at the toon everytime I would enter the login screen, the more I started to feel disconnected.  Like that wasn’t me.  I don’t feel like that cow with the massive mace and the pigtails represents me anymore. 

I have a holy priest alt and strangely enough, my first max level toon ever was an Alliance priest – so it’s almost like going full circle here.  I have been really enjoying playing her and researching what it’s like to be a priest (thanks to sites like Miss MedicinaWorld of Matticus and of course, the fabulous Divine Aegis) and I’m more excited about the priest changes than the druid ones.  I think I spent a good fifteen minutes, the other day, just playing with Chakra and trying out all the neat effects that come along with it.  I didn’t have a moment’s hesitation, when it came to placing points into the talent trees on my priest.  The trees made sense and they flowed and I felt good about them.  I didn’t become a drooling, stuttering fool – like when I tried to fill out my talent trees on O.

I began joking about it casually with my guild and they were way too excited about the concept of me becoming a holy priest for good.  As in they want me to do it right now.  I’m not about to change mains, for the sake of a gimmick or for the sake of getting a potential HLK kill out of it (as glorious as that would be).  If I did it, I would really want to do it and do it right.  I want to spend hours reading up on it and practicing it and really knowing it.  I would want to make sure that I could still be an asset to my guild and that I would still have a raid spot and still be a competitive voice in whatever I do.  I wouldn’t do anything that could jeopardize any of those things.  The stars would have to all align for me to make that big step.

And then, what about this blog?  Most of my alts have O names and I have a few in mind for this toon, too.  I could always be extremely corny and remove Oestrus from my druid and slap it on my priest.  I still feel like I would want to be an O, if not the O that I have always been.  So I could in theory, still keep the site mostly the same.  I admit, I don’t know many people in the priest community – so it would sort of be like finding my footing in the blogosphere, all over again.  But I don’t see a lot of holy priest voices (or maybe I just haven’t found them), so I could maybe find a sturdy niche there.  And I wouldn’t have many leaves, with which to tell stories with, if I were a priest.  I would need a new gimmick or tagline, too.

Right now, it’s just something to daydream about or think of.  But it’s tempting – it’s very tempting.  Hm.  What to do, what to do…

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8 Responses to “Identity Crisis”

  1. Tsark September 27, 2010 at 3:10 am #

    I am not sure how invested you are with O as a character, rather than as a class/spec, but you may want to keep in mind that Cataclysm allows Tauren to be priests. So, if you’re like me and have invested a lot in your main in terms of achievements, mounts, pets, etc, O could still be your main, just as a priest. You could even weave it into a nice RP story of O having a huge crisis and following the new teaching of the Sunstriders.

    As a fellow priest (although a Disc one, but you never know), it would be great to welcome you there: I am reading WAY too many resto druid blogs as it is 🙂

    • Oestrus September 27, 2010 at 7:05 am #

      You know, I was actually thinking along those same lines, myself, Tsark.

      I do love the idea of a Tauren priest and I really enjoy the Sunwalker lore, so far. I was thinking it would work, storywise, if O discovered there was maybe a greater power than plants and nature and the sun could be more all-encompassing than the moon. I think I could definitely play it off pretty well.

      Needless to say, my guild is very OK with me changing to a priest and I haven’t even played O on the Beta all weekend. In fact, I took my priest to 82 and have been having an absolute ball with it. Shadow is fun and I healed Blackrock Caverns as Holy and I’m truly enjoying it. You’re right about too many resto blogs – maybe I do have a calling I could fill, after all. 🙂

      • Tsark September 27, 2010 at 8:11 am #

        Just as a minor quibble – I wouldn’t say the Light is a greater power than the Earthmother. They are simply different.

        Of course, O’s frustration/crisis could make the Light SEEM greater 😉

        • Oestrus September 27, 2010 at 8:42 am #

          Absolutely! It’s something I could definitely think about and flesh out a bit more. Mind you, I’ve never given much thought to being an RP type player/character, despite my being on 2 different RP realms in my career. But it’s interesting to tap into now. I know Lilith will be thrilled – she’s all about the RP and I can finally relate to her now!

          I just changed my race to Tauren on the Beta and I’m excited to get home from work and play some more. I was just reading about the updated Beta changes on Restokin and all the other druids were like “We’re saved!” and I’m thinking, “This is a mess.”

          I can feel I’m inching closer to being permanently at that point where I’m ready to re-roll. 🙂

  2. Beruthiel September 28, 2010 at 5:25 pm #

    I’m not sure I could give Beru up. I’ve been Beru for almost 6 years now. I’ve got too much invested in her. In a sense, she is me as well.

    Even if Druid healing is in the gutter at the start of Cataclysm, I will grin and bear it, and hope that it gets better. But more than that – I just can’t picture myself playing any other character as my main.

    • Oestrus September 28, 2010 at 9:17 pm #

      Hey there, Beru!

      The mechanics were the impetus for the idea. I don’t think I could ever re-roll solely because of the way a class works or something changing, gamewise. I’d say it’s about a 50/50 split now. Mostly, I feel like O is who I was. I would like something that more represents who I am now and things like that. I’m really not trying to be too deep or dramatic about it, but I am the type of person who becomes what I’m playing or I need to play something that represents me. I want to know my class/spec like I know myself. I want to be that comfortable with it, especially for the type of things I like to do in game, where that awareness is necessary. I’ve been thru a lot on O and it would be nice to continue the journey on something else.

      I’m still not at the point where I’ve fully decided yet. It’s a strong urge and I’m definitely leaning in the direction of doing it, but nothing has been settled yet.

      I also started ordering “Glee” from Netflix. Any suggestions on specific episodes I should check out first? 🙂

  3. Lilitharien October 3, 2010 at 1:47 am #

    My plan is to have Divine Aegis back in full swing come release of Cataclysm, and I’d be honored if you were back on the team as a holy priest. You’re always welcome.

    • Oestrus October 3, 2010 at 8:33 am #

      Aww, I know we talked about it, but that’s really sweet about you making it public like this! I’m literally blushing!

      I’m pretty much sold on the idea of coming back “home” too – I did state that this was a sort of temporary endeavor until DA was back up and kicking again. I always felt really bad/awkward that I was the only one posting, while you were on hiatus. But I really think we could make that page kickass, come Cata.

      🙂

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