When I was a little girl, though I lacked in communication skills due to severe shyness, I did not lack in imagination. My mind went, literally, everywhere. My shyness, I believe now, led me to have such a vivid imagination because I spent so much time alone with my thoughts. I dreamed up some of the most amazing things when I was riding the bus to school. I’d sit alone and stare out the window at whatever fascinating and beautiful things mother nature was doing at the moment and dream up different characters for myself or storylines for my life that I’d wished had been real. Whether it was summer, and the trees that lined the country roads of my hometown were lush and full and green, or it was winter and intricate patterns were made by the frost made on the windows , it lent itself beautifully to imagining the most out-there scenarios. Spring, the season of awakening, and autumn with it’s vivid colors and the un-avoidable feeling of nostalgia it created, also provided endless inspiration.
One scenario that I daydreamed of most frequently was that I was secretly a princess, and a curse had been placed on me when I’d been born to live with a “normal” family in a small town far from my kingdom. I grew up living a completely normal life, not knowing I was actually royalty. One day, I started realizing that whenever I would spend time outside, I’d notice the plants bending into graceful bowing positions. I eventually noticed that all of nature would bow when in my presence, and pressed my “parents” for the truth, claiming that nature had betrayed the secret they’d kept. They’d eventually come clean, admitted that I was actually a princess, and I’d taken my rightful place in the castle with my king and queen mother and father. I’d bring my “adopted” family to the castle as well (and heck, even my bratty brothers), and we all lived happily ever after.
Now that I look back, of course, I’d gladly keep my own parents, and my “normal” life was more of a blessing than I’d ever realized when I was young. But in the mind of a child, anything is possible. I got the idea for this particular story by noticing the way, as the school bus zoomed down the road, all of the grass and plant life on the side of the road, would inevitably bend into a bowing position because of the wind the bus created, like members of a court. I remember pressing my nose and forehead against the cool window pane of the bus, getting lost in my thoughts. What a beautiful luxury it is to be a child.
Sometimes I wish my imagination still ran so freely, and I think, given the right surroudings and time, it could. But, my lesson to myself, in remembering this, is that inspiration for an amazing story can be found anywhere, in the most common places and mundane situations. My goal is to start looking a little more closely at these things and allowing myself to daydream a little more frequently.
What was your favorite daydream as a child?