Saturday, April 10, 2010

I Rock!

This is probably going to sound a little silly, but I am proud of myself for playing Guitar Hero last night for the first time since getting diagnosed with RA (i.e. almost two years).

Long ago (in a galaxy far away?) APL and I used to play Guitar Hero all the time. We'd play at parties with our friends or just the two of us. It was always fun, and I was actually pretty good at it. I think that's why I was a little bit afraid to play it since the joints in my fingers started acting funny.

Don't get me wrong - I've certainly played video games since getting diagnosed. But mostly we play Wii or Wii Fit, which doesn't really involve specific finger movements. We have even played some "traditional" Mario style games, but the only fingers those games really involve are your thumbs, which have never given me too much trouble (knock on wood!!)

Guitar Hero, on the other hand, requires you to rely on the specific motions of individual fingers to be good at it, or even to not get booed of the stage. (If you don't know the game, one hand presses on colored "fret" buttons that match the notes on the screen while the other hand "strums," like playing a guitar.)

Obviously I can use my fingers individually - I do a fair amount of typing! - but I also can type at any pace I want and go back and fix typos. And I use my dictation software if my hands are feeling achy. So I think the idea of depending on a particular finger movement to play a game scared me somehow. Mostly, I think I was afraid of being disappointed if I wasn't able to do it.

But, last night (not going to lie: after APL made me a mango mojito or two) he talked me into trying it. I wasn't amazing at it, but I could do it enough to play and have fun while doing it. And, though it's just a silly video game, that felt like a pretty good accomplishment to me.


Mirela said...

Hi Mariah,
Funny how little can make an RA patient happy? Most people take the use of their fingers (and other joints) for granted but we are forced by the circumstances to really appreciate their performance. I also feel a sense of accomplishment and a happiness rush when suddenly I find out that I can perform an old task again. I never played Guitar Hero. It sounds like a lot of fun. I have a few other favourites... they're great destressors.

~kelly marie~ said...

You do rock! I still don't have the guts to try the drums in Rock Band, but I started playing scales on the piano again. Baby steps, right? Thanks for the inspiration! :)

Laurie Grassi said...

Woohoo! As Kelly Marie says, you do rock! Glad you had so much fun! I don't know anyone with Guitar Hero, but I have a friend who has a Wii Fit just sitting in her basement, and I keep forgetting to ask if I can borrow it to try it out...although I guess no fingers involved!

Enjoy your Sunday! :) L

~Mariah~ said...

MIRELA: I know I used to take my joints for granted! And now I appreciate every little move they let me make. ~;o)

KELLY MARIE: You know what gets me about the drums in Rock Band? It's not using the sticks - it's stepping on that pedal. That makes my knee and foot sore and angry. But scales on the piano sounds excellent. Glad my silly little fake guitar success could help. `;o)

LAURIE: Wii Fit is LOTS of fun. I highly recommend trying it. Very little fingers involved too - though most of it involves balancing on the board, which can be hard if your legs/feet/knees/toes are acting up. But, when you are feeling ok, it can be a great deal of fun! I also recommend doing it in a group. That way, even if you don't feel up to balancing, you an laugh at your friends. ~;o)

~Mariah~ said...

P.S. The reason this post is entitled "I Rock" is because after every song you finish playing on Guitar Hero, it says "YOU ROCK!" It's lovely encouragement. ~;o)