For the last week, I've been wrestling with a dilemma.
What do I do if I don't enjoy healing as a druid at the moment?
It makes me sad just to type it out. When I started playing and I rolled my first character, I picked a druid because I wanted a hybrid class - one that could fulfil multiple roles, be of assistance to friends and enable me to try different aspects of group play - and because it sounded like a lot of fun to play.
When I hit 80 and started chaining Wrath heroics, my old guild never had any healers online - plenty of hybrid classes but none that wanted to heal. Aralosseien was doing so well in heroics as a moonkin that I decided to pay the gold for dual-spec and take the resto spec for a spin.
It was great, honestly. I panicked a bit sometimes, but I always managed to pull it together overall. In general they stayed topped off, I had mana, we all got emblems of triumph and I eventually had so many I bought the T9 set for each spec.
When the Cataclysm came I put my resto spec on the backburner and levelled to 85 as a moonkin. Who wouldn't? Sure, you could level feral...but I like a little headstart on my enemy if I need to flee. By the time I'd ground out various reputations, dailies and dungeons, I didn't feel like dusting off the resto spec so I went through heroics as a moonkin too. The sheer difference in difficulty between the Wrath heroics as I'd known them and the new Cataclysm heroics was amazing - and I loved that. They taught me how to play my class better, which is one of the reasons the incoming nerfs make me a bit sad. It was the first time I'd needed to know my spec so well and I think I've risen to the challenge.
The trouble is...all my healing experience was in easily-obtainable tier gear that was probably way above what was intended for heroics, with a party of 4 other people who were similarly overgeared the majority of the time. Back then, you could keep people's health topped up, and mana was rarely an issue. I read about the changes to healing, the triage ethic and the mana woes, but I didn't worry too much.
Naivety. In gear appropriate to the current heroic content, trying to contend with mana woes and having to resist the urge to keep everyone at 100% health, I couldn't manage. I panicked too much and people died needlessly. Pixelated people, but still people with a finite amount of time to spend on the encounter. I got sad that I couldn't do it and then grumpy that other people I knew had hybrid classes but weren't bothering to even TRY healing (I always felt guilty afterwards for expecting them to, as well). Every time I tried it I ended up feeling worse, until one evening I called a halt to the whole idea of healing on the druid.
I haven't tried since.
Not healing at all makes me sad though. I've always wanted to have a character that could heal. If I'm not good enough at druid healing, there are plenty of talented players who are, so maybe it's time to make my peace with it and re-roll a new character. I have altitis (I don't think that ought to be a surprise) so I currently have an ele shaman with a resto off-spec and a new holy priest with planned disco offspec.
Here's the dilemma - do I push aside my fear that I'll be bad at healing whatever class I play and just GO FOR IT, knowing that I might find a new character that I can enjoy just as much, which would also mean my guild pugging less healers for raids? Or do I stop feeling guilty that my guild doesn't have enough healers to raid without pugging and stick to my current character? Here's the confusing factor in what was an easy decision for me: some of my friends think I'm worrying too much and have told me I'm useful enough as a balance druid already and that it'd be a shame if I stopped playing Aralosseien as much.
Personally I want to keep trying. I've tried once, failed and need to try again, or I could lose the courage to do it permanently and I don't want that to happen. I might have to give up my chubby moonkin form for a while but if I could find a class I enjoy healing as I'll see the same content with the same great people and that's what matters, ultimately. Do I follow my instinct on this, or stick with what I know?
If you've got to the end of this massive, unedited, unnecessary out-loud worry, thank you. Your opinions, scoldings, butt-kickings (I could probably do with a kick in the behind about this) or general /waves would be massively welcome on the subject. Did you ever have a similar dilemma?