Do you remember? Do you remember the time when you realized you couldn’t wait to find out what happened next in a book? Or when you couldn’t sleep and you hid under the covers with a flashlight because the wizard was going to conquer the evil king? What about the first time you watched a movie and felt your chest constrict with an aching sadness because a character died? Not to mention the favorite TV show that had you checking your watch, or hitting record on that DVR (or for some…the VCR…Beta???).
Whenever that moment may have been, story is a major part of our lives. It is our lives! The sum of our time here on earth is an epic odyssey unique to each one of us. We walk by living stories when we go to school or take the metro. We sit next to them on the plane. They live in our homes.
For me, story was a part of my life before I can remember. Books have been companions since my earliest days. I remember nights stretched out at the foot of my mom’s bed while she read to my sister and me before we would go to sleep. I remember the night we all wept tears of sadness and loss together when Leslie drowned in Bridge to Terabithia. And when we cackled at Bradley’s predicaments in There’s a Boy in the Girls’ Bathroom. Books and the characters they described kept me company many a day. Where the Red Fern Grows was the first novel I read, finished and then promptly opened back up to page one and began again.
But story wasn’t just on the page for me. And I am willing to bet that is true for most of you, as well. When I was younger, we lived in a grey house on a fantastic road. In this grey house there were french doors that led out to the back yard…But not for me. I knew what they really were. They were a portal to any world I wished to visit (shhhhh, don’t tell). My sister was almost always my traveling companion. We ran from pirates. We survived on acorns and wild onions. Sometimes we were runaways looking for a new home…not unlike The Boxcar Children. Most of the time we inhabited the forest with fairies, elves, gnomes and other magical creatures with only the fireflies to light our way back home.
Now I listen to my very own magical creatures beginning to write their stories. My little sprites flit and move about with wild abandon – playing out their lives with extreme enthusiasm….and still, I can’t wait to find out what will happen.
(Images: Frodo in tree – readingrainbow.com, magical door – pinterest.com)