“I like nonsense. It wakes up brain cells. Fantasy is a necessary ingredient in living. It’s a way of looking at life through the wrong end of a telescope, which is what I do, and that enables you to laugh at life’s realities.” Dr. Seuss
Today I was with a high school student to take her to an informational interview with a police officer. I provide these informational interviews to students who are interested in doing career searches. She lives in a rural community so we had quite a distance to travel to the State Police department where she would be met by the officer.
On our drive there we were talking about the kids today and how they don’t have imagination. I had to agree with her to a point, as I feel that with all the computer games and tv shows available to kids today, they lose their imagination when the pixels do the work for them. She said she had no imagination, not because of computer games, but because her father told her she didn’t have an imagination anymore since diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome. If you are interested in learning about Asperger’s Syndrome, you can find information at http://www.aspergerssociety.org
I cannot attest to that as being true or not true, but it made me think of how my life would be colorless without my imagination. As a child, I was friendless because of no kids to play with in the neighborhood other than boys. My mother hated it when I would sneak off to play with them, and would always punish me if I came home muddy from playing war in our dugouts. It was my girlish wish that I had been born a boy because of the fun they could have, while we girls had to sit pretty with our curled hair and starched dresses. How boring being a girl was- especially for a girl who didn’t get into playing with dolls.
So began my imagination. I used it to be my friend and my constant companion while I wrote stories and poetry of adventure. I would read whatever I could get my hands on, and while most kids were out having real adventures, I was reading about them, and creating adventures in my own little world. I was told I was a strange girl by the neighbors because I would create these stories just to get some shock value from them. I guess I was a bit passive/aggressive in those young years. My mother would always ask me “why?” Out would come another story, until I realized that storytelling in that way was not conducive to being accepted or believed.
As a mother of six, my imagination again rose as I saw life through those young eyes. They came up with some “stories” of their own as all kids do, but I relished in their play and their laughter while making their own little worlds of fantasy. I never told them to put their imagination to rest. It is best shown in my adult son’s artwork as he pulls out his imagination in his illustrations, ( http://www.vonecker.carbonmade.com ) and in the humor of my other adult sons, and the empathy my daughters have for other people.
As a writer we all have our secret worlds, places to escape to, but imagination is also good for reinventing oneself as circumstances in our lives change, or what we have done just doesn’t work anymore. After life threw me some real curves, I have been on that path of reinvention. In my next post I will be discussing the ways one can reinvent themselves through imagination.
I’m interested in how you have used your imagination to reinvent yourself. Please share with me your stories.