But mostly, I made up stories. Once I learned to write, I wrote stories all the time. I tried to draw pictures to go along with my stories but my impatience with my own lack-of-talent and technical ineptness often made me ask my best friend Jill to do the drawings for me (she was extremely gifted).
I wrote a lot of wacky stuff back then, usually because my wackiness was what got the rave reviews. It was easy for me to begin a tale and wind it all over the map of the imagination before bringing it to a bizarre ending. I discovered that bizarre endings were not only popular, they often solved the problem of how to finish off a tale that actually has no moral tale or "message". My protagonists had a habit of turning into other creatures (or other genders!) and flying off to enjoy other (untold) adventures elsewhere. Elsewise, they ended up marrying someone and living "happily ever after"
You see, I grew up with tons of fairy tales told to me all the time. The hidden part of me that was naiive and romantic, clearly showed whenever I told a story. It also showed in my drawings. Psychiatrists and psychologists believe that children tell their innermost feelings through their drawing and imaginative play. If that's so, then apparently I had a secret deep longing to be a princess. Despite my tomboy nature, I obviously coveted long beautiful dresses and waited to someday meet my prince (or princess) who would wisk me away to an imposing castle where we would live happily ever after.
On the other hand, if drawings and imaginative play show what lies deep within the heart of a child, I must have had a serious dichotomy going on. Because the other half of my imagination was one of swashbuckling and heroism. Just as I might tell a tale of a princess who turned into a snake before meeting and marrying her alligator prince who later turns into a princess so they can get married under the lake, I would weave a story of being a pirate who one day decides to go on land and save the hapless old man from the fierce dragon who has put a spell on the old man because he's really a handsome prince in disguise and now they can both jump on the back of a turtle and fly up to the moon to get married and live happily ever after.
I dreamed of being a princess and being saved. I dreamed of being a pirate and saving a princess.
(Good gravy, I've been bi-trans-gender-sexual since I was a child!)
What did you used to imagine?