Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Delighting in the Imaginary

I’m reading Memoirs of an Imaginary Friend by Matthew Dicks. It’s books like this that make me insanely appreciative that I’m able to read. And it’s books like this that bring me back to Laura and Gin Gin—my pretend friends from childhood. A witch and a ghost respectively. (I was born on Halloween.) Even though I had three older sisters, I still delighted in and sought out the company of Laura and Gin Gin.

Imagination was encouraged in our house growing up. I hope to pass this love of the possible on to my girls. There’s something electric, beautiful, and freeing when the mind is uncaged. Potential has a heartbeat of its own. I want to hear the pulse of that beat in my house always.

The imaginary keeps finding a way to reinvent itself in my life. To the point it often hopes to be mistaken for what’s real. I’m now referring to my characters. They can be feisty and stubbornly present. They interrupt during conversations, set up camp in my yard, and infiltrate my dreams. But I admit this with a smile on my face. Because stirred up from the dust are electric and beautiful beings my mind has figured out how to free.

So whether I’m daydreaming about shapes in the clouds with my children, characters on a mission in my WIP, or skipping amidst questions that begin with the infamous “what if,” I say long live it all. Long live the imaginary.

“It's true that writing is a solitary occupation, but you would be surprised at how much companionship a group of imaginary characters can offer once you get to know them.” Anne Tyler

Did you have pretend friends growing up? Do your children?

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