I never wanted to be a dwarf.
5% of total population play dwarves
of those that play dwarves, 88% play male.
Summer 2005. We were always short on healers, so I started a human priest. It was a struggle learning how to solo (coming from my warrior main), but I'd finally found the rhythm and was making progress. I ran into another guildie who had also recently started a healer. She stood there, with her willowy Night Elf druid body, gorgeous purple hair, laughed in that throaty, bourbon-soaked voice and said "But if you're going to be a priest, it needs to be a dwarf priest."
I balked. I didn't want to do it. Dwarves are short, and fat. And they dance stupid and have crappy voices. (Though I must admit, some of their flirt socials have grown on me "No they're not real, but thanks for noticing.") But it was for the good of the guild. So I extracted promises from her to level up with me and to make me a full set of 16-slot bags, then re-rolled my priest as a dwarf.
Molten Core & Onyxia were and fearward was the racial ability that made dwarven priests highly desirable for raids. So I put up with the fat jokes and, should we pull a mob while threading around a corner, endured it being blamed on my dwarf's big ass. Fearward was uber and I'd remind players that it was a toon I suffered through to make their lives easier. All well and good, respect re-established.
Fast forward, fear ward was given to draenei, then to everyone. The -only- reason I was a dwarf long gone, stuck in a body I never wanted.
Of all the combinations available, my dwarf priest is the closest representation of RL me available in the game. Her ample chest, wide bottom, and thick waist are what I see in the mirror every day. Even down to her apple nose and light golden brown hair. That's me. And what does it say about me that I'm willing (even eager) to change the shape of my avatar the moment I get the opportunity? Is it escapism? Can I say 'it doesn't matter, it's just a game?' In writing this, I'm asking permission to be so shallow as to be so vain that I can divorce the body issues from the mental state this implies.
And yet, I'm tired of it. I didn't choose a dwarf because I wanted it, I did it for my guild. Most other female dwarves I know are married women; I'm single and (relatively) young. No need to spend all my time in a body most reminiscent of my grandma.
The biggest thing I'll miss: the twirling braids when casting.
* * *
I purchased a race change when I got home from work, the first day the option became available. Now a Draenei, tall, svelte... every time I look at her, I'm pleased at how pretty she is. Will I see her as 'me'? Like the magic 8 ball says: "Reply hazy, ask again later"