For some reason when I was about oh 8 years old I believe it was, I became addicted to fantasy settings. I can think of many catalysts to why this may have occurred. I had a second grade teacher named Mrs. Lucas whom I can scarcely remember much about. I know she was a large lady and everyone at first was frightened of her but she has a very pleasant mannerism about her and that soon faded. I remember she would turn off almost all the lights and sit in a rocking chair and read the hobbit to us. While I am pretty sure I only got about 10% of the story I still was pretty amazed with it. Then later when I was in 5th grade I went over to my friend Cindy Kline's house and played Dungeons and Dragons with her brother Mike Kline. And well that as we should say was the gateway drug that led me down the dark path.
Something about those years was magical in a way I could never put to words. As an adult I try to recapture those moments. In fact as I sit here and dream about a house I have to admit I also have a small dream of a basement with a long wooden table some creaky chairs and walls with book shelves filled with books. No I wont have to ask Mr. Engle the librarian for refuge in the basement, There wont be anyone leaping liberally onto the table doing fake fencing motions (unless I complete my evil plans to make one of my 2 children into a nerd like their old daddy) and it wont (I hope) have that slight mildew smell, but just maybe I can recapture some of those memories.
I don't know if I could cope today with the many issues I face daily were it not for the sense of imagination my parents thankfully allowed me to have. It is this same imagination I use to funnel into my writing, and I use to empower the many books I read, and I infuse into my gaming when the occasion arises to allow for it. It allows to make all those wonderful funny voices my kids love when I read and on occasion allows me to make my wife laugh at something I say. Being a dreamer allows me to sail past the negative and put the positive spin on things. Yes as I have grown older I have become more jaded and I still keep things in perspective but it allows me to overcome a lot of trials. If you will remember when I talked about the long hallway with blank walls and windows in a previous post. Well some of the windows in my hallway might have a dwarf wielding an axe charging down a nasty dragon. Or might be fondly recalling a great session from my high school days with fondness. Its there very windows I need when the needle is pressing into my spine, or I'm being shoved into a small tunnel for a MRI and 30 minutes of mind numbing pounding sounds every so many months. When I am leaning on the toilet after a nasty spell of throwing up, I can clear my mind and think of something my daughter said about her princess adventures.
So I guess in all this I am saying, I think god gave man and imagination to allow him to create things beyond reality. And to sometimes turn those dreams into reality. I think he also blessed us with it to allow us to focus past everything that is wrong in our life and instead recognize exactly how his blessings have made many of our dreams come true. The very brain that I curse because it doesn't let me leg work right or let me sleep, also lets me sail off to worlds unknown, tell wondrous stories to entertain friends and family and stores all these beautiful moments in life to recall with everything else around me is not going so well. I thank god for my my imagination, I thank my parents for never stifling me (ok maybe a little but lord knows where I would be if you didn't give me a reality check from time to time) and my wife for still putting up with me as I constantly flutter around trying to nail ideas down for the next game or my next story concept or my need to game on my computer or ps3. Most of all my children for reminding me from time to time where dreams begin.
Keep your chin up