So yesterday morning, I posted about how I finally feel like a Monk healer. I finally feel I am growing comfortable with Ireenia and am starting to consider her my main. I finally feel I am succeeding.
Last night was Undying Resolution’s summer party. Amongst promotions and awards for attendance and a grand ol’ game of lawn darts (which OMG, I won!), I was surprised with the most wonderful gift possible from all of my guildies – an award for Most Improved Raider. (Which I tied for and shared with Otoka! Grats, O!)
I am not sure if anyone else realizes how much this – something that might seem small – means to me.
I came back to WoW in October, after a hiatus of about six months. At the time, there was no question in my mind that I would come back on Effy, even if that meant I would likely be DPS’ing instead of healing. Effy has always been my main and my raiding toon. The Shaman was the one and only class I really wanted to raid on. Heck, Effy has been my persona since I started playing WoW, and especially since I started blogging.
DPS’ing did not last (thankfully) – I am horrible at managing myself in a raid as a DPS – and I started healing on Effy again soon after returning.
I was ridiculously happy to be raiding again, and more importantly, to back with my guild, all of whom I adore to no end. ❤
I raided on Effy through the first tier of MoP, and then made the very difficult decision to switch to a Mistweaver Monk, because we were growing heavy on Shaman and completely lacking in a reliable Monk healer.
It was a trying switch for me, having only raided on my Shaman up to that point. It was awkward. I missed my totems. I missed my Shaman utilities. I missed the buttons I knew where and how and when to press at precise times in nearly any situation. I looked to the internet, and came back with little to help me, the Monk class being very new still. Unlike my Shaman, there were not heaps of reliable sources from gamers who had been through trial and error and multiple tiers and expansions and changes with the class.
I felt very much on my own when I started out.
But I looked at other Monks I ran across in dungeons and LFR. I obsessively monitored Skada. I used the Armory. I searched out every shred of information there was to be found, even if most of it just seemed to be more wordy tooltips of my skills and glyphs and talents. I am even trying to get more comfortable with World of Logs and Raidbot/Epeenbot, and compare myself more there to other Mistweavers. I wrote my best in slot lists and guides (of which I plan to write more, as well).
Through all of it, I have come to understand my Monk better. I have learned to perform with my Monk better. I have even started to field questions from guildies and friends about how to play a Mistweaver. And believe me, as someone who has only played one for about five months now, and has had to kind of rebuild myself around the class, that too is awkward for me. Who am I to tell someone else how to play this class? Even if it is just simple guidance. Usually a skill A or skill B and why sort of thing.
Last night felt like a justification of my progress. I felt like my improvement was noticed.
Now, I know I should not need justification. I know I should not need people’s approval or commendations. But I do.
I talked about Shaman, because I could rehash the findings of others, and add my own small two cents about what worked best for me within those general parameters. I did not rock the boat on anything anyone else had already tried and tested.
Everything about my Monk has felt like me giving my own two cents.
My Monk has felt like a project. A project that many times over the last several months I felt I was failing at. I cannot begin to explain how many times I wanted to run back to my Shaman.
But I kept pushing. I kept tweaking. I kept adjusting what did and did not work for me. What managed my mana best? How much Spirit? What put out the most heals in crunch times of heavy damage? When were the best times to use my cooldowns? What rotation would keep me healing from start to finish, instead of scraping the bottom of my mana pool halfway through a boss fight? What stats were most important for my Monk healing style? What talents did or did not work for me?
And I have noticed a remarkable improvement in my performance. I have noticed I can manage my mana through most situations, and even when I do hit bottom, I have the means to keep going. Because if I don’t run myself out of mana sometimes, how else am I going to learn? I have become comfortable enough to vary my rotation depending on the situation, even to the point of Fistweaving my way through most normal mode fights.
I still have much more to do, but last night, I came to the realization that I am not the only one who has seen an improvement.
Thank you, Undying Resolution. 🙂