If you’ve read my other posts, you may recall that I leveled from 75-80 as a Holy Paladin running instances. I liked the idea of healing but I was never completely comfortable with the Pally healing style. Sure, I healed for a crap-ton on each cast but I always felt like people were 1 GCD away from death. Also, with being new to it, I made some mistakes…some of which I got yelled at for. I was ok with that, generally. I knew I wasn’t that good.
The Switch and the Love
When I made that decision to level my Shaman to 80, I had decided to go resto. Up until level 32, I was elemental. By this time, I had seen Cleo at work healing various raids we joined together. She seemed totally comfortable doing it and, I have to admit, the green lasers shooting all over the place were pretty cool to watch in a raid. Also, as mentioned before, I didn’t like the feel of elemental. I swear I was always healing myself after quests because my blue fuzzy ball was just plain weak, allowing mobs to melee me. So, I queued for a random as resto. How hard could it be? It just so happened that Cleo had a level 33 Shadow Priest so she queued with me.
We got the Graveyard Scarlet Monastery instance (nice and short right?) and boy, did these healing spells just feel good. I almost felt OP because I never once had to drink and I was able to keep everyone topped off with no issues. After that, Cleo dropped group and I chain-queued for a while, each dungeon making me more and more comfortable with healing. I was in love with this playstyle. I got to level 40 or 41 and I had decided to look into dual spec. I knew I didn’t like elemental already, so I chose enhance. WOOHOO!!! Man, it was AWESOME to watch my troll go to work on mobs with his double axes. This was prior to 4.0 by a couple months so there were some mana issues by dropping totems and using all those abilities. But it was so fun. I actually didn’t step foot in another instance til 70 because I was having so much fun enhancing. I leveled from 70 to 80 mostly by healing instances. It still felt very natural (except for the first one I ran at 70, because I still had WAY down-ranked spells). 4.0 hit somewhere around my mid-70’s and with it came Healing Surge. At those levels (and even running level 80 heroics), this was an awesome heal. I could basically spam this and nobody would ever die. Some say that it replaced Lesser Healing Wave but it really felt more powerful than LHW.
Free Epics for All!!
T10 gear was now able to be purchased with Justice points (new currency that took the place of all current emblems). I ran so many dungeons and gathered my 4 set of t10. Remember, I was really impressed with the look of t10 back when my friend showed up to my low level pally. I was so excited to have these pieces of Frost Witch gear. Very shortly after all this, I got accepted as a trial raider in the guild I was in. Many of the members and officers had alts that they ran in a Friday Night raid we did so they knew that I wasn’t a complete idiot. Thing is, they wanted me to trial on my ret pally. I was happy to have a trial spot, but I really wanted to test my skills raid healing. After a couple weeks, they decided to see how I was on my resto Shaman. YAY!!! It was the last raid of the expansion so we did fun stuff like Character Lawn Darts (we jumped from the top of Wyrmrest temple to see who could land closest to the original jumper). We also ran Black Temple naked, except for weapons and shields/offhands. If you looted BT gear, you could wear it. That was a blast. I also got a twilight drake that night from OS3D!!
So, it had now been established that I was going to still be a trial but on my resto shaman. I was very excited about that. I leveled to 85 in 2 days with my friend on his elemental Shaman and his brother on his shadow priest. We did instances together as we got the quests to do so but my friend’s brother healed on his priest instead of me on my shaman. It wasn’t until 85 that I realized how bad it was gonna hurt, mana-wise.
I felt so fail those first few days. I was going OOM on every pull. I simply didn’t understand why it was now so difficult to heal when healing before had been a breeze. But you know…I think this is where I held somewhat of an advantage. I really hadn’t been healing all that long so unlearning bad efficiency habits were minimal. as I started acquiring more and more 346 gear, things became more comfortable. I was learning to make better choices on my spells, and we were all learning that CC was now a necessary thing. These Cataclysm heroics also taught me how to be more aware and mobile in fights. This would help me tremendously in making the transition to raid healing.
Our first raid as a guild in Cataclysm was December 21st and we worked on Conclave of Wind first. By this time, I was confident, efficient, observant, and overall just a better healer than I had ever thought I’d be. It was only 3 weeks later that I was promoted to Raider. I was very excited about that. I recently made the switch to Alliance on a completely different server. I felt really horrible leaving my old guild but new work schedules were causing me to miss too many raids. That wasn’t good for either the guild or for me.
So, that’s my introduction in a nutshell. Well, the last 3 posts anyway. I know I’m a Wrath Baby but I honestly feel like I adapt well enough to where that doesn’t matter much. I’m not saying that I’m special…just that making adjustments isn’t as difficult as some people make it.