The Elemeeple on Solo Gaming

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In Need of a Cure: Boardgames and Convalescence

Ava Jarvis
United States
Bainbridge Island
Washington
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I'm sick. And it makes me upset.

It's not just a cold or flu or something like that. Something bad happened to my health that I'm just not recovering from, and the doctor doesn't know what it is, but she does think it was related to over a decade of a highly stressful job. Whatever it is, it's affecting not just my physical health but also my mental health.

I've been trying to rest, trying to get back to a state where I can exert myself as I used to. Working in a start-up environment for over ten years... that apparently is disastrous to one's health. Or at least my health. I used to work non-stop for days on end. I used to work through weekends and late into the evenings. I did this for years. I still found time to game, although less and less as the years wore on during my prime, and then more and more as I became more consistently ill.

And I thought, at the beginning of this month, that I was all better again. So I pushed myself into programming, into filming, into reviewing and writing, at the same levels of effort as I exerted when I was working.

Then I got horribly sick and it put me out of doing anything for almost a week.

Now that I'm somewhat recovered again, at least enough to do a single video review, I find myself... just sad. Sad that I destroyed my health as thoroughly as I did. That I let work dictate my life instead of the other way around (but who of us can afford the other way around anyways?). That I am possibly facing a shortened lifespan as the result of all this.

That I'm not going to get better. Not in a year even.

That it's going to be extremely difficult now to find a job.

I don't know honestly what to do sometimes and it makes me upset, especially since I have surgery to deal with now (just on my foot, not huge as things go, but it will put me on a cane and in even more pain and yeah I just hate this).

And I kind of think about this, and I hate that I am limited to, from what I can tell, one activity a day. I can make a review (spread out over multiple days). I can do a playthrough (those take less time). I can learn more programming stuff (the world of Node.js and the turnover of some of the world into, of all things, Javascript programming, is fascinating to me) for at most four hours. And it's taking me days to work through what's needed for a particular change at the Lair of Lith.

When I think about what I'm limited to now, heck yeah I get upset and frightened.

But one thing doesn't get affected—as much—by the illness. And that's boardgaming. Well. Solo boardgaming, if I'm honest. I love social interaction, but now it exhausts me. But if it's just a boardgame, and just me, and I don't have to climb stairs to get to my games and I'm somewhere bright and comfortable, I can game a lot.

I don't know why in particular, but it's keeping my mind sharp, or at least, I hope it is. I figure games are why I'm still able to learn as quickly as I can (that is my strongest mental ability: to be able to absorb large quantities of knowledge quickly, and thence to disseminate it via teaching; I'm basically an information conduit).

So when I get upset, I'm just going to take out a boardgame instead of wallowing in it.

And yeah... I'm 36. And a walking poster child for "yes, you CAN work yourself into an early grave."
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Subscribe sub options Thu Feb 26, 2015 5:26 pm
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