It sounded like a genetically altered, monster sized rodent trying to scratch its way through my roof in the middle of the night. I might have considered the many reasons this creature wanted to get through my roof and into my bedroom at 2:00am, but my mind was busy imagining other explanations for the noise that woke me up. Let me assure you that the noise was real. I know this for a fact because the dog barked and my daughter got out of bed to scour the outside perimeter of the house. She gave the all clear, turned out all of the outside lights and went back to bed with the instructions to “take care of the boy” (the boy is my 16 year old grandson) if anything did happen. My reply to her was, “He should take of me; after all, he has all those knives (my grandson has a collection of throwing knives).”
I headed upstairs and made a quick stop in the bathroom where I suddenly remembered that there was a fire extinguisher and rope escape ladder in the closet. I decided to grab the fire extinguisher and take it back to my bedroom. It would make a great assault weapon in case a pack of marauding villains or monster sized rodent tried to get in. I crawled back into bed and sat looking out the window. I was able to scrutinize my backyard, the neighbor’s backyard, and the adjoining golf course. After feeling somewhat satisfied that we had managed to scare away whatever caused the noise, I was able to go back to sleep.
The picture I shared on this post was one shared by a friend on facebook tagging me as the person most deserving of the comment. The people who are closest to me know a secret kept from the rest of the world- I have an incredibly overactive imagination. My friend would tell you that this is an understatement. I believe the words I have heard about my imagination include astonishing, bizarre, and unbelievable. Oh, and let’s not forget dramatic.
I have to admit there is truth in what they say. I have been this way all of my life. My imagination was my salvation as a child growing up in alcoholic and abusive homes. It helped me workout the worst case scenarios in my head in order to survive when some of those imagined ideas became reality. My therapist once told me that I needed this survival tool as a child, but that I might need to replace it with something else. Although it may be hard to believe, I am much better than I used to be. I try to follow Pooh’s advice to Piglet, “What if it doesn’t happen; which is, after all, the most likely outcome anyway.”
However, the imagination is still fully intact. This brings me to my dilemma. Why can’t I write a simple story for my fiction writing class? I have been thinking for a couple of weeks and can’t come up with a single good idea. Flying fairies, talking animals, alien invasions, cheating spouses, dysfunctional people have all been turned into great stories. I don’t know if there are any more original story lines out there. Maybe it is like American Idol when they tell the contestants to take someone else’s song and “make it their own.” I just don’t know.
I have another couple of weeks before the 5,000 plus word story has to be in a first draft form for review by the professor and my class. I know something will come to me. I just hope it comes soon. As soon as that story is revised, edited, and turned in, there is another one due. I think that perhaps I need to sit down and simply start free association writing. I can hear Dory’s voice now encouraging me, “Just keep writing, just keep writing, just keep writing…”