I am very thankful for the extremely powerful imagination that God has given me, but sometimes it gets me into trouble...or at least into embarrassment.

When Jeremy and I first got married, he caught me in the bathroom "talking to the wall," and he has been teasing me about it ever since. What he doesn't know (and what he is learning right now if he is reading this) is that I was not talking to the wall. I was talking to an imaginary person who happened to be in the room with me. I'm sure some of you are now backing away from your computer screens and searching the phone book for the name of a good psychiatrist to refer me to, while others of you are smiling and nodding in identification. (Or at least I hope some of you are smiling and nodding in identification. I would hate to be the only grown up who still talks to imaginary people.) Yikes, now I'm getting paranoid about letting this blog out into the world, but oh well, this is me. Laugh if you must! :-)

My imagination sometimes makes it hard to separate fantasy and reality, especially when I am involved in a REALLY good book. This is difficult to describe, but even though I KNOW what reality looks like, sometimes when I'm reading or just finished reading, the edges of fact and fiction begin to blend.

I can remember one Saturday night when I was in third grade. I had entwined myself into a fictional account of a scientist who frantically experimented to refine a miracle drug that would save millions of soldiers' lives. The book was set during World War II, and the drug being refined was penicillin. Dr. Joe's top secret experiments with penicillin were somehow being leaked into enemy hands, and a plot had developed to steal his notes and discoveries before he could finish. The story was intense, and I secretly holed up beneath my blankets and read by the glow of a flashlight until 5:00 AM. (If my parents had found out, my book would have been taken away.) The next morning, after being dragged from bed, I attended Sunday School. I have no idea what the teacher, Miss Linda Ramsey soon-to-be Mrs. Scott Rankin, was talking about, but for some reason, she said the word penicillin, and I shouted, "No!" and jumped to my feet. In panic, I had assumed that she was telling Dr. Joe's secret, and I had immediately, patriotically jumped up to stop her. Once on my feet, I sheepishly realized that my reaction stemmed from the book I had read the night before, and I slowly sat down. Amid student laughter and teacher questions, I sat down again while my tired mind foggily struggled to sort out which world was real. (I soon came to the correct conclusion, but it worried me slightly that my brain had reacted that way.) Of course, I told no one...until now.

This has happened several times throughout my life, and Jeremy and Kimmie complain that when I am reading I cannot hear them talking to me, and I sometimes yell at my book. This does not bother me at all. I enjoy becoming part of the story, and I feel like I am constantly meeting new friends.

Last night, around 3:00 AM, I finished a bit of science fiction. American scientist, Albert Morrison joined a Soviet team of scientists who miniaturized a ship and sailed into a human brain. Albert brought along a machine of his own design, which he later accidentally discovered would aid in reading others' thoughts. This morning, while driving to work, my imagination subconsciously kept "seeing" arteries and glucose molecules, white blood cells and dendrites floating past the front and side car windows. Later, while in a meeting at work with Craig, he said something about sensing another person's personality. I had sensed the same thing when speaking with that particular person, and my mind immediately jumped to Albert's telepathic machine. I smiled and nodded, thinking that Craig was talking about the machine. It took me a few minutes to remember that the machine existed only in my book, and that Craig had not read the book so he could not possibly be discussing the machine.

Once I discovered my mistake, I amusingly told Craig about my too-vivid imagination, and we laughed together. He then confessed that he has had the same confusion with reality when he reads a really good book!

So, maybe I'm crazy, but at least I'm not alone in my insanity!
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2 Responses
  1. Kristin Says:

    You're not crazy! I talk to myself more than anything else and I tend to blend reality with fiction after reading a really good or tense book that I completely got immersed in. I think it's just the way our brains work! :)


  2. DeAnn Says:

    Well, I don't tend to forget which "reality" I am in (the book or real life), but I must say that sometimes I am so sad to end a book because it means I have to leave their world and say good-bye to the characters.


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