On this final Sunday in 2018, a quote caught my eye and then settled around my heart. That’s a poetic way of saying the words would not let me go, pulling my thoughts toward them repeatedly and stirring memories from my childhood. Ultimately the quote, by writer Erin Van Vuren, connected some dots for me.
“Humans have the ability to imagine, which means no matter how ugly your world has become, you can create a new one to escape to. If that’s not magic, I don’t know what is.” Erin Van Vuren
In Need of a New World
I learned, as a young child, to imagine a new world. My real world wasn’t ugly, it was scary to me, especially at night when darkness gathered in my room.
I discovered I could calm a racing heart and fall asleep if I used my imagination to create another realm, another world, to escape to. The movies I loved to watch provided the building blocks for these alternate realities. So bits from Mary Poppins might combine with the big bear from Jungle Book providing a strange and wonderful world for my young self to explore.
As I grew older, my imagination became more powerful as my new worlds evolved into complex creations. I always had a role in these stories. More than that, being elsewhere, living in larger than life stories, helped me to figure out who I was.
There was a time, in adulthood, when I felt imagining other realities must be wrong, or a waste of energy. I stopped creating them for a while. Doing so caused my imagination to atrophy. Part of owning who I am involved moving past my fears, all of my fears, and throwing wide again the door to my creativity and imagination.
Imagination is a Bridge
What I’ve realized today is that imagination is a bridge. When I imagine a new world I am working through situations in a constructive way that takes me from where I am to where I want to be.
In my imagination I can create a safe and beautiful place to sit with my younger self. Little Cindy feels safe to share her fears with me in a way she never could with anyone else in reality. And I can offer to her what I have learned as I’ve grown, explaining the world in ways that ease her fears. In turn she helps me connect with the creativity I had as a child. I’ve experienced deep “ahas” and let go of ancient, long buried energy, chatting with my four year old self. Together we have moved beyond the need to stay silent. She has helped me to find my voice.
In ways I’m only just beginning to understand, the journey I’m about to take, in 2019, is connected to my ability to imagine a new world. I am creating my reality. And as this year slips away and a new one dawns, I’m stepping into a role that is tailored made for me. I know this because I have created it with guidance and encouragement from the Divine.
I’m excited to enter a brave new world, one with a familiar landscape known only in my imagination until now. I’ve crossed the bridge imagination built. And now reality is born. It’s magical indeed. It is enchanted.
“The world is but a canvas to our imagination.” Henry David Thoreau
What new world are you imagining, for next year? Tell me about it. I’ll find you there.