Tuesday, January 15, 2013

This one time...

My name is Michael Marberry. I'm 20 years old and I'm making life changes.

This blog is going to be my journal for a long time. I'll be sharing my experiences, feelings, and pretty much everything else on here for all to see. This is the start of my new beginning.

Sometime in 2007-2008, I was introduced to an online game called World of Warcraft. I had no idea what the game was about, but it hooked me instantly. After one night of playing, the game was all that I could think about. I even stopped reading my cherished Harry Potter books so that I could play more, which says a lot, because I love Harry Potter like a fat kid loves cake. I quickly allowed the game to take over my life. I let the game affect my home life, every job I've had, and every outside relationship with just about anyone. I quickly went from playing 5 or so hours a day to nearly 12 hours a day every day. I eventually dropped out of school and obtained my G.E.D at 16, and at that point there was nothing standing in my way from playing the game all day, every day.

Looking back on it now, I should have just kept reading Harry Potter. I could have stayed in school and eventually have gotten my C.N.A. I was employed as a nurse aid with a local nursing home in August 2010. It was such an easy job when I think about it. I made pretty nice amount of money and had the hours I wanted, which were completely based off of when I played the game. I'd go to work at 10pm every night, work til 6am, play the game til 10, sleep til 7, play til 9:50, then go to work. Every. Single. Day. I didn't mind it either. I thought I was livin' the life. In December of 2010, I ended up getting fired from that job. Instead of going to my C.N.A classes to obtain my certification so that I could keep my job, I decided to just stay home and play instead. Getting fired didn't bother me too much either. I looked at it as an opportunity to play more. From that point on, I've maintained a pretty steady level of playtime until now. I've somehow managed to warp every schedule I've had ever to fit my preferred playtime. I've logged exactly 506 days of playtime on that game. Imagine sitting in a chair for over 12,000 hours. I clearly made some really good choices.

Hopefully you sort of understand where I'm at now. I came to the stunning realization this past New Years that I've literally wasted 5 years of my life. I missed out on a lot of experiences and opportunities by putting a game before absolutely everything else.

It's a new year though. I'm making changes here and there, and cutting World of Warcraft out of my life is my number one priority right now. I'm hoping it will be as simple as just deleting everything and moving on for good. I've 'quit' in the past, but I only managed to stay away for a short time. This will be long term. This will be permanent.

As of January 11th, I've decided to take my 506 days back. I've begun planning a walk to San Clemente, California. Now, I've already had a hundred people tell me how idiotic of an idea that is. I will admit, it still sounds a little crazy to me even. I have a few reasons for wanting to do this walk, but the main two are pretty simple. First off, I have friends that are taking an "Epic Road-trip of Dreams" this summer, and their destination is San Clemente. I was offered a ride, but I'd rather walk and see everything up close. It's a nearly 2000 mile journey, and I couldn't be any more excited to be doing it on foot. My second reason, and definitely what is pushing me to do this, is sort of tied to my story above. The majority of my friends and acquaintances have played or are currently playing the same game that I let swallow my life, but this can extend to anyone who's in a similar situation, or a completely different one even. I'm hoping that maybe this will inspire someone to do the same thing I'm doing. I'm hoping that this will help motivate other people to drop whatever it is that's holding them back and finally make some changes that are for the better. I've been unhappy with my life for a long time, and I attribute that to the fact that I've kept myself in chains by playing a video game too much.

I'm leaving Columbia on April 1st. I have 75 days from today to get everything planned out and to be prepared for an 80 day journey. I've got a long and expensive road ahead of me, but I couldn't be more excited.

Walking to California is just my beginning.
It's time to say goodbye to the prison I've kept myself in.
I'm taking my life back.