Browsing Category: Rambling

#AcerForGaming made me a role model

role model

Role models are strange things. I’ve written about them in other contexts, like looking at Aloy or Lara Croft as gaming-based role models for Harley as she grows up. But it’s not just impressionable young people who need role models, although of course, they do. Adults continue to need others that they can admire in some ways, and it’s a strange thing to put myself in that category. It makes me a bit self-conscious, and a bit awkward, but I also feel proud enough about it that I have to share.

Way back when, I promised that I wouldn’t apologize for being a working mom. My thought was that it is who I am, and I was going to bring Harley along with me to meetings or whatever needed doing, and carry on living my life as a working woman. While I have done that with great success, it hasn’t always been easy. I was particularly worried about the #AcerForGaming event – I was going to be working all evening, helping to get other ladies playing on consoles and PCs. How could I do that if Harley was difficult or tired or whatever else. I was really torn about it, but decided I had to take her – I couldn’t present myself as a working mom gamer without my kid – and I’m SO glad that I brought her. Continue Reading

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Disaster, priorities and a whole lot of perspective

disasters

I’ve had a post that I wanted to write for a long time. It was built on the idea that we are exposed to so much more of the world’s devastation than we ever used to be. On my Facebook newsfeed, there will be stories about rapes in schools, murders of people of color by police, animals being literally loaded alive into garbage trucks, child soldiers, the plight of refugees… the list goes on and on. I remember commenting on a video about a particularly heinous action by police in the US, asking if this was a new thing or if it was always happening and the world is finally being made aware of it. A friend responded by saying it always happened, but now everyone has a camera on their phone and can capture it. I was so devastated, until the next horror.

Lately, I’ve wanted to go on a bit of a news fast. Like an ostrich burying its head in the sand (which, by the way, they never do), I figured I’d hide from the news, hide from social media and just try to live in my own bubble of friends and loved ones. But the reality is that even that is wider than it ever was, and makes the news feel that much closer. It’s not just “oh, shame about London” – I have friends on Facebook who had to mark themselves as safe in the event. I have friends I actively worried about after the attacks in Brussels, in the storm in Cape Town, in the fires in the Eastern Cape. And I think that’s what’s making all the news, all the horror, all the disasters so much more profound. Continue Reading

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18 months old – my new favorite age

18 months old Harley

Today, Harley is 18 months old. It’s strange to believe 18 months have already passed, that a year and a half ago was when she made her dramatic entry into this world. 18 month later, and I feel like things are settling into a groove I can enjoy. I know I’ve enjoyed other ages. It’s also increasingly clear that parenting just keeps getting better, and somehow my kid just keeps on getting more adorable. 6 months old was SO much better than newborn, and 18 months seems to be the best so far.

That doesn’t mean things are easy. Oh, by no means are they easy – that would be the totally wrong word to use. But they are more fun, and interesting, and different. Harley has a lot of personality now, and she cracks me up. She also drives me a little bit crazy. Here is the video of my Facebook Live last night that was meant to be about #AcerForGaming, and ended up being about Harley being, well, Harley. Continue Reading

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How to grow real friendships, naturally

How to grow real friendships

I know this blog topic might seem strange to a lot of you. What is this “How to make friends and influence people”? But it feels increasingly relevant and I thought it might be worth sharing. I keep seeing articles and videos about how despite us living in a more interconnected world, people increasingly feel isolated and alone. Many struggle with how to grow real friendships, and social media can create the illusion that everyone else is happier and doing better than you. So, what is the secret to forging deep and meaningful bonds with other people?

This might seem silly, but The Sims wasn’t totally wrong. Okay, it was wrong in many ways – friendship isn’t best cultivated by locking two people in a room together, forcing them to make jokes and exchange gifts until they finally get to a green level of friendship. What, don’t tell me you haven’t done that! But the game was right about all of us needing friends. We need them to feel happy and social, connected and understood, as well as to possibly meet our partners or find the dream job. But how do you grow real friendships, the kind that goes beyond superficial smiles?  Continue Reading

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Baby steps

baby steps

Harley has started walking. It actually happened a while ago. When we were in Cape Town, she’d take a couple baby steps (toddler steps?) on her own before coasting or screaming for us to give her a hand. Now, she pretty much can walk on her own although she still prefers a hand, and she doesn’t seem to like thresholds, preferring to be carried over them like a cliched bride. Walking with her is adorable, and I try to do it as often as possible – we walk to and from the car when I drop her off at school or pick her up. I figure the more she walks (even holding my hand) the stronger those muscles will get and the more confident she will be on her own two feet.

While it is incredibly cute and an important milestone, she walks really, really slowly. It can take an extra few minutes just to get to the car, or to walk to the school building. While I sometimes feel like carrying her to speed up the process (and sometimes I need to when we’re running late), I try to resist the urge as much as possible. She is so excited to be able to walk, and I’m so happy for her. Plus, it’s really important that she gets all the opportunities to practice her walking, running and whatever else. But it’s slow and means that I have to have a lot of patience. And those baby steps and their required patience remind me a lot of other aspects of my life that require patience. Continue Reading

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