So, this was not an easy post to write, but a needed one. I struggled with it as I headed back home after another unexpected in-world memorial. Yet another person taken too soon; yet another reminder that our time on this earth is ever so limited.
It goes without saying that it’s nearly impossible to form bonds with people in Second Life without eventually experiencing loss. The first time it happened for me, it was the unexpected (albeit not entirely surprising) death of my SL son Tommy. I say it wasn’t surprising because we had many arguments about the state of his health and his stubborn stance when he didn’t think it was bad enough to see a doctor. I felt otherwise. And that was a lost that caused me to walk away from Second Life for a couple of years.
And it happened several times since, almost every time it was someone that was taken unexpectedly. It was rarely a situation where someone actually knew their time was nearing an end, so you don’t have that time to mentally prepare yourself for it. Twice, there was cancer. Neither time was any easier to cope with.
Whenever I hear people talk about “I keep SL in SL”, I just smile and nod, because that is a really sad way to live your Second Life. You have the opportunity to meet and explore your SL with so many different people, and I can’t fathom how someone can connect with people but maintain a level of disconnect at the same time. I feel like it’s almost more of a “wishful” thinking in those cases, because you either connect with people or you don’t. It’s hard not to connect with the person behind the avatar.
As I sat through this latest memorial, so many people got on voice and expressed similar stories about how they didn’t spend enough time with the person they loved and lost. And it was another stark reminder that, if we have people that we care about in Second Life, we need to take the time to make sure that they know that. If you love someone in Second Life, rather than worry about whatever taboo you think there is, tell them and show them. Don’t worry about the “what if’s”.
Life is far too unpredictable for us to take these moments for granted. I’ve watched so many people care so much about people and not ever properly express it, or have a “I’ll do it tomorrow” attitude. Sometimes, just like people we know in person, tomorrow never comes.
So love fully, love without fear, and appreciate each moment.
ZoHa Blogger/Social Media