Last week I took off from work because it was supposed to be my kids' spring break and we were supposed to go on a road trip. For the obvious COVID-19 related reasons, that didn't happen. I still decided to take the time, figuring I could use it to clean up the house, catch up on some the sleep, or work out the kinks in our home schooling schedule.
While I did manage to get all those things done, I also ended up getting my vacation after all. I visited the beautiful land of Sulani in the Sims 4 where I swam with dolphins and mermaids, had kava parties and pork roasts, and learned how to grow tropical fruits. Even though I never left my home, at the end of the week I felt as refreshed as I would if I had actually gone on a real vacation.
Though I am new to Sims 4, Sims has gotten me through some pretty stressful times. During my senior year of college, if I wasn't stressed out about getting all my projects done, I was locked up in my room escaping to the world of Sims 3. When I graduated from college Sims was there to ease the sting of unemployment. When I was dealing with postpartum depression, Sims provided me with an escape. Now that I'm stuck at home, Sims is now allowing me an opportunity to travel to choice destinations without having to go anywhere.
Sims is not just an escape from reality for me, it has also taught me valuable life lessons. When I was stuck in a job that I vehemently hated (I genuinely wished I would get hit by a bus so I wouldn't have to go to work), I thought of my sim. When she hated her job I didn't force her to keep going. I let her quit because I knew she would find something else she enjoyed more. If I could extend that grace and faith to a digital version of myself, why couldn't I have that confidence in my own self? I quit that job with the firm belief that there would be something else for me and within a week I found another I really enjoyed.
Sims provided me a visual way to understand relationships and the development of skills. We all have an invisible experience bar that fills up the more we practice something and the more time we put into getting to know someone. Skills and friendships take lots of time to develop. We cannot expect to be perfect the first time we try something. If we put in the work we can master skills and earn ourselves lifelong friendships.
Sims is also a great motivator for me. After playing for a few hours, working hard to give my sim the best life possible, I inevitably get annoyed with myself for not putting the same effort in my own life. It's at that point I am ready to shut the game off and work on improving my real life. After a week of Sims, I managed to clean up and organize all the things I had been avoiding, plan out an awesome Easter for the boys, and put together several family art projects for us to work on. Not only did I finish off my week feeling refreshed and rested, but accomplished too.