Why haven’t I been around Second Life much lately? In my last post, I tried to describe my feeling of Second Life being a place had shifted and I found my interactions had a different quality to them. Sure, this has been a factor in my being around Second Life less, but it wasn’t just that. Nor was it ever because I felt like SL simply became a glorified chat room as some suggested. As I alluded in the last post, there is more to the story.
For as long as I can remember, I have had a rich imagination; dreaming vividly of worlds and lives that I could clearly see in my mind’s eye. Almost in the first minutes of being in Second Life, I felt plugged into my creativity and imagination in ways that I didn’t expect. Moreover, I found myself excited by the promise of SL; that it gave me opportunities for exploration and communication and connection that I would never have imagined. For an idealist with some deep dreams, it felt like a limitless horizon.
The real story here isn’t Second Life, but of me. I’m a dreamer for all sorts of reasons, but one of those reasons has long been a means of escape; when things got unpleasant when I was little, I learned I could build something favorable in my mind. So while I was excited by the promise of SL, it also became an interest at a time when my first life was filled with stress. While it was true that I was coming to SL because of the promise I felt it held, I also came to SL to escape and to fill needs that weren’t being met in my first life. Here’s where my spiral began: I would log into SL to escape and deferred addressing some of my RL issues which led to more stress and nurtured the need for more escape. Let me be clear about one thing, I am grossly oversimplifying this with the benefit of hindsight; there were lots of factors playing into my issues with my SL and my RL, but I would also describe this as the overarching theme. The upshot of it all? I’ve been away because I felt I needed to be away. My time in RL has been well spent taking care of some things that needed attention; while things are far from perfect, they are much better than they were.
What does all this mean? I’ve not given up on Second Life at all, the same holds true about my belief in the promise of virtual worlds. I still love SL, but will simply be around less. For those of you who know me in-world, you *will* see me again, but it is likely to be for moments here and there. In a related vein, not that I’ve blogged much lately, but this also likely to be my last post; I would like to thank everyone for playing along so nicely as I’ve thought out loud about my virtual life over the years. So, thanks again, and so long! And, as Vera Lynn so beautifully sang, “We’ll meet again/Don’t know where/Don’t know when/But I know we’ll meet again/Some sunny day.”