Ever since I was little have had an active (sometimes too active) imagination. I was (and sometimes still am . . . what? I didn't say that, that's embarrassing!) constantly involved in my "stories"--a game of make believe where I created a life for myself either as a character I made up, from a book, or just as me living and amazing life. Two of the earliest instances of this were when I made believe I was in the Babysitter's Club, and my little imaginary family: my husband, Thomas Benjamin Franklin, and my three daughters, Meghera, Polly, and Charity. To my knowledge I didn't use my imaginations in the way most kids used them. I didn't talk out loud to them, or blame things on them. I did talk about my little imaginary family, but I never thought of them as real or insisted that they were.
As I grew I would use my "stories" to take my mind off of unpleasant things. I would be Cinderella during our weekly cleaning, for example. They became more and more complex, and there were times when I had several "stories" going on at the same time and then I would pick and choose which was best for the situation. I would revisit certain scenes and change things about them as I learned more about the world (or if I just wanted to change something).
So, why am I letting you all know about something that is actually kind of embarrassing? Because I'm grateful that I have such an active imagination. Sure, sometimes I need to wake up from these stories and face life as it is. But, I think that the stories have given me a good outlet for all of my secret desires, hurts, and needs. I don't like getting mad at people, so instead I will play out a scene in my mind where I do get mad at them. After that, I feel better. It's cathartic. And it is an escape. Sure, I read and watch movies/TV to escape too, but there are times when you just need to put yourself in a complete different situation, one where you are the star.
Also, my imagination has given me a gift: the gift of writing. I know that I'm not the best writer out there and I may never be published, but taking my stories out of my head and putting them on paper (read: little metal complicated pieces belonging to a computer that I have no idea how they work, but they do and for that I am grateful. As long as they don't crash) is such a wonderful feeling. Maybe someday someone will read my writing and it will be an escape for them just as I have used other authors' imaginations to escape.
So, yes, I am very grateful for my imagination. And am very sad for those who don't have one. What do they do?