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As I have seen people make these sort of requests, or demands if you will, I feel perfectly entitled to one myself. I would like to ask PMDG to delay the release of their 747-8 for, I think, a year or so.

I am about to take an enforced and extended absence from the world of simming, and I would hate to not have that -8 on release day. So, in the spirit of making seemingly perfectly reasonable to the self (what do you mean others?) requests, would you kindly consider delaying the -8 just for me?

On a serious note though, and I hope you will forgive the personal digression, I would like to express my sincere gratitude to all of you at PMDG for an experience that, I dare say, in recent years for me went far beyond merely flight simulation, but also, in a very real sense touched on the therapeutic. In 2013, I was lucky enough to have a gorgeous little girl gifted to me and she was soon, after an extended stay in neonatal intensive care, introduced to the wonderful world of PMDG programs. Although she had absolutely no idea what she was listening to or looking at, she could not take her eyes off the night lighting on the overhead panel of the 777, and to her little ears, the sound of the engines of the JS4100 was, quite literally, a lullaby. And if you knew how little interest she showed in sleeping, those JS4100 engines worked like magic.

Unfortunately, 7 months and 26 after she was born, she died in my arms as a result of a virtually unheard of genetic condition, and despite the heroic efforts of some of the finest doctors anywhere in the world. Without going into detail, but also without making light of the situation, I buried myself in my simulator, in a limited but effective way, giving in to my constant desire to escape into a virtual world from something from which there was no escape in the real. When faced with set back, my default position has always been to get on a plane and go places. But with work obligations, that just wasn't an option. I recreated more than once a week the flight to Mauritius that her mother and I took shortly after her funeral. I don't know exactly what it was about reliving that flight on my sim, but for brief periods of time, usually the taxi, take off and landing, I could just imagine that I was actually fleeing the horror that was the death of my little girl, just as I did years ago. The incredible immersion recreated by PMDG in their aircraft turned flight simulation for me into an escape from a reality that I have struggled to connect with since she died.

I found in the frequent flights that I did on my sim, an expression of my desire just to go to new places, and just be on the road that would become my home, and forget about the person that experienced that horror. In place of a hollowed out person, I could escape into the virtual world of unending travel. I actually brought it up with the therapist that I was seeing two years after she died, and he was fascinated that I could latch onto something simulated to find a relief, however temporarily, from something real, and he asked me about what it was that created the escape for me. It was the sound of the engines, the bit that I could actually relate to as a passenger. To me, that was a testament to the remarkable depth and breadth of sensation that PMDG creates, and though I imagine that this must be quite strange to read, I feel like I wanted to share this with you so that you can also know the depth of the impact that your products have on some of us beyond merely simulating flight, it is something to look forward to, something to get lost in, something to make the day just a little bit better when nothing else is up to the task, something to stimulate the imagination, a place to forget for just a moment, and a sense of better things to come. It is a world that, at times, is better than the real one.

As I said, I choose the word therapeutic very carefully, but also very deliberately, and for that, you have my sincere gratitude. When some day I take up flight simulation again, I will be right back as a PMDG customer. Until then, I wish you all the best, you have been of greater help and in more way than you probably ever imagined.

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17 minutes ago, ClearedtoLand said:

As I said, I choose the word therapeutic very carefully, but also very deliberately, and for that, you have my sincere gratitude. When some day I take up flight simulation again, I will be right back as a PMDG customer. Until then, I wish you all the best, you have been of greater help and in more way than you probably ever imagined.

Comfort can be found in some very different places. Glad that you were able to find yours. Some people don't at all.

Best of luck. We'll keep the engines turning for when you get back.

P.S. I'm pretty sure this is the first time I've seen Carl write so few words. You clearly made an impression on him somehow.

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What an extraordinary reflection. Thank you so much for sharing that.  It can't have been easy.

I've never had a trauma remotely equivalent to yours.  But you've made me realize that my way of coping with my comparatively minor ones is quite similar, in ways that I hadn't fully understood before your post.

Thanks for giving me (and I suspect others) a whole new level of appreciation - for flight simulation, yes.  But not only that.

And yes - godspeed!

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That is a story unlike any I have ever heard or expected to hear in a forum like this.  I'm saddened by your loss and cannot imagine the pain you must have felt.  Thank you for taking the time to share it and I hope that you are able to find peace.

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Best of luck and don't forget....   Just above those dark clouds, the sun is shining and the sky is blue.....⛅

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I was going to ask you to consider your words, as I have half-jokingly asked one of the different software houses to delay the release of their sim product until after I'm back from my winter holiday, only to be met a couple of days later... with a delay announcement.

But... I feel like a slang term for a male reproductive organ now.

I can atest to therapeutic qualities in simulation from a first hand perspective (which is a story I haven't drunk enough whisky for today), so all I want to add now, is godspeed, and I do wish upon you a future gift of healthy and beautiful progeny.

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Wow, I am really touched by the kind and thoughtful responses from everyone. I am grateful that I could have shared a little bit of Nina's memory with you, and I appreciate the warm words of support and encouragement from all of you. Thank you.

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WOW! Francois.. THAT is the most moving, not to mention deeply personal story I've read on AVSIM for some time. ..Thank you for sharing. I use the sim as an escape, but certainly not from that devastation.

All the best in the future. Clear Skies & Tailwinds.

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Take care--simulators will always be around and improved when you venture back.  I know what you mean by the sound immersion on PMDG planes bringing back what you experienced as a passenger and hitting it home for you.  Flight sim is my creative outlet and I LOVE and have LOVED everything about commercial aircraft since I was 3...never changed; they form part of my heart and soul and make me, me...and make me happy! :blush:

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Thank you for sharing this Francois, i wish you all the best for the future!

 

 

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WoW!...Just...Wow! Thank you for sharing that. Godspeed and good fortunes!

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Totally not what I was expecting from a "When will we get X aircraft!" thread.

But I get where you are coming from, there is something to be said for escaping for a few hours into a world where the difficulties of our lives can be paused for even but a small moment.. and I hear you on the sound aspect - my partner has no issues falling asleep to the lull from a pair of GE90's crossing the Pacific or some RB211's doing an Atlantic run...

Francois, my thoughts are with you and your family and wish you well and hope to see you back in the community soon.

Wes

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I am glad Flight Sim helped you when you had need of it.  I cannot imagine your loss and never want to go through that. 

On the other hand Flight Simming can be more than an escape for you.  It is still there for when you feel you may want to again experience the wonders of Flight,  Come back soon,

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Very touching. I will keep you in my prayers. God bless you.

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