My retirement?

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james-matfield

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A little backstory first. The year is 2006. I am a young father that has just experienced a hardship in life. I lost a career I had built that lead to us declaring bankruptcy and moving my small family (wife and son and then my daughter born in 2007) into a 1-bedroom apartment. We lost our house and so much. I felt like a total failure as a father. During that time, I found SL and it sort of became my escape from RL. I didn’t admit to many in RL, but I felt into a big depression because even working 2 jobs, I felt like I couldn’t get out of the hole. Keep in mind, I grew up poor. I didn’t have a family to fall back on as I had been removed from my bio mom as a teen (due to abuse and neglect I won’t go into) and raised mostly by my grandmother. Once I got out on my own, I didn’t have a choice but to succeed. It was that or be homeless. I had been told growing up through school by teacher’s, bullies and even my own mom that, “you’ll never amount to anything.” I was often compared to other family members and basically after a bit of being bullied, you believe it yourself. I didn’t bother with college and my career I had worked up the ladder early on didn’t work.
By 2009, I was working 3rd shift and had spent most of my SL going to dance clubs and messing around. But I got tired of that and eventually tried role play. I landed in CD and applied at HGH. Suddenly, I was surrounded by so many amazing role players. The thing about RP is, it can fill a void and it can help you through tough times. RP is therapy. The thing is, so many of these people I met at the beginning went on to be good friends and great motivation for me. The lead at HGH back in the day once challenged me (Lance Amat). He said, “you are so easy to talk to and you seem to really care about people. Why are you just roleplaying it? You should go to college.” Both he and his partner (Jasmine) said that. I admit, I had friends in RL that hadn’t even said as much to me. I had people like Piper Rewell, Perina McGinnis, Caris Winslett and Rabid Bedlam all encouraging me in this. I talked to all of them early on about Lance and Jasmine encouraging me. Piper (working in the medical field herself) was very instrumental in getting me to consider going into college. One day after a long night working 3rd shift in my dead-end Walmart job (and my 2nd job as a pizza delivery guy), I sleepily put in my college application and submitted for financial aid. In my mind, I didn’t think I’d get in.
Fast forward a few months later, I had forgotten I applied. I received a letter saying I am officially starting college. I remember my response being, “Well, I guess I am going to college.” I continued to RP while going to college. I continued to make great friends that supported and encouraged me. We told amazing stories including the story of James’ daughter Sidda, his son Nick and stories involving gangs, love and heartache. I felt as I grew in RL, my character grew SO much. And the thing is, I caught success. I was a C student in high school. In college, I was making A’s. As I closed in on graduation in undergrad, I had assumed again that the most I’d ever get is a bachelor’s since I felt like I had already gotten lucky in my success. I had been predicted to be a failure. Now I always wanted to be a therapist and I had gone into social work. My 4-year degree got a job as a child protection social worker and if I could just get my master’s, I could become a therapist. While I had amazing people in RL pushing me and encouraging me, people in SL ALSO encouraged me and pushed me to apply to grad school. I did and I graduated in 2018 with my master’s and automatically began working on obtaining my license. I got my provisional license and in 2019, I became a child therapist under supervision. This year, I passed my independent licensure exam and became an independently licensed therapist. My m not focus is on kids and trauma. I also got promoted to Assistant Treatment Director.
Where am I going with all of this? The more I entered further into this field, the more the bleed between SL and RP took its toll. I supervised people and spent hours upon end giving intense trauma therapy to kids. By time I logged on, it was hard for me to feel invested in rp anymore because already worked in a medical job all day long. Hard to feel much like logging on and doing 10 more hours of medical RP. Knowing my time as running the hospital is coming to an end, I proposed promoting Jenn Tobias to become my right hand of sorts. The reason for this is simple. In the past, we’ve had other HGH leads. I’ve led it 3 times. I had left a few times to focus on college or my kids but I usually ended up back in the role because people either caused drama, they just burned out and left or they just didn’t know what to do with it. I wanted to give Jenn a chance to demonstrate her leadership capabilities because I seen in her what I seen in myself once upon a time. Yes, there’s a lot of people in HGH with leadership capabilities and obviously, we can’t promote everyone. I wanted her to get her taste of leading without all the pressure. She has exceeded my expectations and continues to log long hours; role play stories and engage players.
With this being said, it is time for me to officially retire from HGH for good. I’ve been involved in HGH in some fashion (doctor and/or lead) since 2009. I will always be eternally grateful for the motivation it provided me to get where I am in life. It helped me see something in myself and the people in this community has been instrumental in helping me see that potential. I cannot continue to stay as lead of HGH while feeling burned out on HGH. I’ve been a doctor for so long that I don’t get to RP the stories I want or engage like I want. Taking this step will allow me to finally step outside of the medical role and see what else is out there. Maybe I’ll restart as a criminal character similar to my run as a reject back in the day (on an alt, Jin). Or maybe I’ll become a cop. Maybe I’ll run a business or do all of the above. It may take me a bit to reboot my character and get prepared but I’d like to think you all will see me again.
I do not intend to step down as CM or a story weaver. Those things are my passion when I am in world and I love helping. I am hopeful that losing the burden of HGH (it is a busy and demanding place!) will enable to me better focus on those things. I ask you all to please bear with me in this transition. Also, please give Jenn a warm welcome as lead of HGH and treat her with the same respect and patience you all have afforded me. I fully believe in her and the staff at HGH. They have my support and always will. Finally, thanks to everyone that has played a role in my life and encouraging me to achieve my goals. There are still some goals ahead and I hope to continue with CD as a lead/helper/story teller so long as Nadir will have me.
Also thank you to Nadir for putting up with me. You gave me a chance when most wouldn’t. I’ve always been loyal to CD (I just can’t try and get into other sims) and that is mostly due to how Nadir has treated me. Thank you to Blue, Peri, Piper, Caris, Rabid, Sidda, Saki, Audrina, Bellsie, Piper Delvalle (whom my characters all seem to flock to even when I don’t mean to), Vie, Emily, Danni, Ellis, and everyone else in CD. For now, consider James Matfield and Brayden Michaels retired. Talk to you all soon and much love to you all. Thanks for allowing me to share this story and the stories on sim.

September 22, 2021 at 4:35 pm
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audrina-tolsen

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September 22, 2021 at 10:00 pm
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Nadir Taov

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September 22, 2021 at 10:03 pm
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scratch warrhol

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September 23, 2021 at 4:03 am
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Syreni Barony

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September 23, 2021 at 9:07 am
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perina mcginnis

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September 23, 2021 at 5:46 pm
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September 24, 2021 at 5:54 pm
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September 24, 2021 at 10:55 pm
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