[I’m looking for inspiration today, but I can’t seem to find it.  Not in my whole wheat waffles dribbled with some peach yogurt to make it seem like a decadent pastry (sometimes I trick myself into believing that). Not in the inspiring words of some of my favorite bloggers. Not in the Daily Post suggestions, or even from my dreams. So I decided to look at some of my past writing, that I haven’t put into the blog and see if I could expand, or if it could just speak for itself. Here and there I have pieces of a “memoir” I guess, a series of essays that I want my daughter to read someday, so that she knows who I was throughout my life. This is under a file called “A Patchwork Life”]:

When I was a young girl I loved going on long car rides.  Well, maybe not always.  When all three of us kids crowded into the back seat and the elbow fights began because someone crossed the line into another person’s space, that wasn’t so fun.  But I loved when I got to sit by the window and everyone was listening to some oldies or jazz that my Dad played on the radio.  In the quiet my own adventures began.

During the day I imagined that I wasn’t in the car, but I was riding next to the car on a beautiful horse. Sometimes I imagined a rich chestnut with a lightning bolt of white between the eyes.  I named her Wildfire, after the song.  I think Wildfire might actually have come from a book I read.  Sometimes I rode a gorgeous Palomino that glistened in a bright gold when the sunlight hit her.  I called her Golden Glow or something like that.  Whichever horse I imagined that day took me speeding along the highway, with wind racing through hair and mane in wild abandon.  Sometimes we took side trip rides away from the family car, but we always returned to make sure we didn’t get lost.  My horse was swifter than any car, and very brave.  I always had a magnificent ride that I never wanted to end.

At night my imagination took me on a different adventure.  I would stare at the stars searching for UFOs.  I’d seek out the numerous moving lights in the night sky, thrilled anytime I could find a satellite or shooting star. Even airplanes motivated fantastic fantasies.   Eventually, I would find a bright star that I decided was a planet.  I imagined that on that planet there was another girl looking at the stars and thinking about me.  I envisioned our conversations, our games, and how fun it would be if we could figure out how to travel through space.  At some point I would slowly drift off to sleep.

With each car ride, my adventure would change, but they were always exciting.  I sometimes wish I could easily revisit them now.  It is harder to fall into complete daydreams now, as life and everyday worries have the tendency to intrude on even the most fabulous fantasies.

Those fantasies were important though, in that they were another place of escape. They became a place where I allowed myself to be as brave and courageous as I wanted to be. They are also the foundation of my continuing search for stories to tell, as well as my joy in working for and with young people. Youth has a closer connection with the world of magic and imagination; connections I struggle to hold onto as the realities of adult life take the forefront.

On our most recent long car trip, the drive from Kansas to Massachusetts and back, I yearned for those childhood fantasies. Instead I had to lose myself reading the journeys of “Poor Mr. Frodo.”

Sometimes, though, when Sarah and the dogs were sleeping soundly in the back and Nathan was driving, I would find myself drifting off into the wonderful lands of imagination. I almost felt myself riding that horse again; together we were off on an adventure in a completely new world. Sigh.

9 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. gracefulglider
    Feb 18, 2011 @ 08:58:47

    Truth be told,am scared of adult responsibilities…. yes i have undertaken many but right now planning on a major move that will see me living by myself and planning on it makes me moody and i lose the novelty of life… I so feel you Lisa


    • Lisa
      Feb 18, 2011 @ 09:04:26

      Adult responsibilities can suck you dry, but if you hold onto that inner child you can defeat the dryness. Some of the best times in my life were when I lived on my own . . . there is a joy in that freedom that defies even the responsibilities.


  2. gracefulglider
    Feb 18, 2011 @ 09:13:07

    I hope i get to say the same 🙂 will def hold on to that child in me, I know I will need her.


  3. Tori Nelson
    Feb 18, 2011 @ 09:59:57

    I am having the same icky feeling of not being able to find inspiration. It sucks 😦
    I think this post is beautiful, though, vivid and so relatable. I think everyone has that realization that sometimes the magical eye with which we look at everyday life as children is harder to hold onto as adulthood creeps in.


  4. athursdayschild has a long way to go and much to be thankful for.
    Feb 18, 2011 @ 21:00:54

    I, too, go to a lot of old things I’ve written, although, I’ve really only been writing for a few years, except for some poems I wrote in high school. Sometimes I’m just too tired to write. I tend to get inspiration when I’m out in the woods, ironically, away from the computer. Maybe, that’s because I spent a lot of my childhood playing in the woods.


  5. TheIdiotSpeaketh
    Feb 21, 2011 @ 10:51:32

    Wonderful post! Thankfully, even though I am in my mid 40’s, I have never let go of that inner kid inside me. (Hence my usually childish blog) Keeping the wonderous imagination you had as a kid is a great thing. 🙂


  6. Trackback: Freaking 4 AM! « Woman Wielding Words
  7. Trackback: The Magic of Childhood Memories « Woman Wielding Words

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