As a child, I had way too much imagination packed into my scrawny body. I’m surprised I made it into adulthood without health complications brought on by the frightening tricks my mind played on me.
In elementary school, a friend scared the wits out of me when she insisted that a man watched us from a nearby hilltop. We were on the playground with a hundred other kids, but she had me convinced that (1) there was a man – whom I couldn’t see; and (2) he singled us out to stalk.
She kept her fun going when we were at her house that afternoon. She peeked out her window and (easily) had me believing she saw him. I was nearly hysterical by the time my parents came to get me. (In case you’re wondering, we didn’t stay friends long. After sharing she had supernatural powers, I decided she was the whack job – not me.)
In junior high, I swore the popping and creaking of our settling house was in fact a deranged madman who planned to attack us as we slept. My ears even heard footsteps on the carpet (coming closer to my room, of course). Eyes opened wide, I saw nothing but blackness. With shallow breathing (and very dry eyes) I waited, unable to move. Oddly enough, I always fell asleep and managed to wake up unharmed in the morning. Perhaps it was chloroform.
Luckily, my body grew into my imagination. Instead of my imagination prowling the night like a famished tiger, age has tamed the beast to behave more like a house cat. Although still fierce at times, it is mostly cuddly and fun. I don’t miss the tiger, that’s for sure.
Rather than dwelling on frightening scenarios, my imagination finds the unusual in the ordinary. I see ninjas with machetes in our walls’ texture and Elvis’ face on my toast. When I look at clouds, I see puppies, rabbits, clusters of balloons or faces. Dead tree trunks take on the form of animals.
At first, I attributed these sightings to remnants of my childhood imagination. Now that I think about it, it could just mean I need new glasses.
What things have you seen that aren’t? Is it imagination or poor eyesight?