Wednesday, 7 September 2011

P P P P Poker; My Chosen Activity

Back into it for our second semester of learning, in our second year!

We were told to choose an activity that we enjoy, that's meaningful to us, or that we just want to do!
Guess what i chose.... Poker.
Poker is a game that has been played in my family for years! Any chance the boys in my family get, they whip out their cards, chips and money!
I was never allowed to join in this fun, due to the fact that I was too young for gambling, however I took every chance I could to watch them play. I was so intrigued by it. I learnt the rules through observation (which shows that modelling works) and started getting really into the game.
At last, I was old enough to join in. There was a joining fee of $5- eeeek! I was going to try my best to win it back. Turns out, I was a better observer than I was a player. I lost my first game. In fact, I lost several games.

It has now become a tradition in my flat. One of my flatmates, Ron, decided one day that he would buy a poker set for all of us to play. I was rather excited by this. It didn't take long from when the poker set entered the house, to being sprawled across the coffee table ready to be played. Ron and another one of my flat mates, Thomas + myself were the only one's who knew how to play the game. So we spent the first 20 minutes explaining the rules and objectives to the other, Claire, Alix and Monique.
At first we played easy, very little strategy was used. Alix won. Beginners luck I say.

Poker + Mindfulness =
Seeing the people around you, trying to suss out what their cards are
Seeing your cards and wondering "how am i going to win with this"?
Feeling smooth but hard cards
Feeling round bobbly chips
Smelling the dinner burning
Smelling the plastic cards and new smell of chips
Hearing people screaming about their "dumb" cards
Hearing others yell in delight because they won
Tasting salty chips and creamy dip while you play

So what are some feelings/ describing words when playing poker?
For me personally;
hope (for good cards)
long lasting
poker face
table talk
"pocket aces" (Thomas)
anger/ sadness (when losing)
"all in mate"

How this relates to occupational therapy?
Meet new people
Join groups
Learning new skills
Keeping the mind active
Give them something to do during the day
It could even be a "meaningful occupation" to some (which us OT's are all about)
& I'm sure there are many more...

That's me for today.

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