I’m just going to start with this- I got into gaming late. No, not abuelita late, I’m 27. But it was only for the past maybe two years that D&D and then video gaming became really important to me. I’ve always been a pretty huge geek and I am a part of several dozen fandoms. But gaming was different.
Of course I’ve played board games- Trouble was a favorite in my house. Card games too. I say I can’t play Uno with people because I stack my cards (you WILL get four draw 2’s AND a draw 4 if I’ve got them). But my parents told my siblings and I that we weren’t getting a system for the household unless we all got straight A’s. Which never happened.
So even though I knew a few things about video games, I wasn’t privy to them. To top that off, I only got the chance to play D&D because the person I refer to as my adoptive tío invited me to play to which I immediately said yes because I’m a huge fantasy and world building nerd who is an aspiring novelist and D&D is literally perfect for someone like me. And let me tell you, I’ve turned into a bonafide dice goblin. He and his wife (or my titi) are awesome- do I blame them for making me enjoy math, absolutely. But they will literally answer any D&D question I have. And there are a whole lot, but they never mind much. They are amazing DM’s and players and I’m thankful that my first playing experience was with them and their group.
Now while I’ve had some nice experiences with video games(I had a friend teach me how to play Skyrim) but those were painfully few and far between, so it’s really hard not to feel like I’ve missed out on things because I didn’t get to play them as a kid. Luckily I’ve got my loving boyfriend to support me, and he is doing his best to turn me into an avid gamer- and it’s working. His friends, though, are “real” gamers. And it’s frustrating to be left out of gaming conversations because I have no knowledge whatsoever about the game/system in question. Am I working to change that, absolutely. It also helps that my significant other will explain this to me when I ask. It sucks that at 27 I’m asking for help with things that 12-year-olds can do, but he never makes fun of me. Except when I drive in games, because I’m really terrible at that. But he still helps and encourages me. “You don’t suck, you just don’t know how.” He tells me this all the time, and sometimes I don’t believe him. Then I surprise myself by completing a task I thought impossible and there are many hugs, praises, and head pats as a reward. Sometimes I even get to catch him off guard!
What’s great about this is that it’s been a real confidence builder. I have even more fandoms I get to belong to and gush over- new worlds to dive into head first with gusto. I’m even creating my own homebrew and have some people excited to play it. And best of all, that means that I have more things in my life that make me happy.