Some might have considered me a wild child. I had a crazy imagination and a LOT of energy. If my childhood friend Bess is reading this, she can vouch for the crazy stories we used to concoct with our dolls as props.
I also didn’t need a partner in crime. I was quite content to play in my room by myself with just me and my imagination.
I thank my parents for limiting TV and encouraging reading that gave me such a playful and imaginative spirit.
The other day, I was running through my neighborhood and there was a little girl outside in her front yard. She was maybe 8, 9? (Hard for me as a non-parent to tell these things.) But she was in full play mode, talking to herself and instructing imaginary people? animals? to do things with her. At first, I thought. Wow. What a weird little kid.
Um, hi kettle. Pot here. Black much?
That little girl was me 20+ years ago.
So when the fiance and I went to Where the Wild Things Are, I could kind of relate to the weird little kid with the wild imagination.
Only here’s where I stopped connecting. While Max’s imaginary fantasy world played out with dirt fights and big monster piles, my world would have been a little cleaner, less physical.
I am all about a big fort with lots of rooms and tunnels. But my rooms would have little kitchens in them and my tunnels would be swept.
We would build large swings that would fly up over the fort for fun. Not dirt fights. In fact, the less dirty the better, and no rough and tumble.
I hate the fact that my imagination was so driven by sexist stereotypes. I don’t know who to blame for that one. But it’s just who I’ve always been. I never liked sports. I never liked being messy or getting dirty.
So it was hard for me to see the appeal in Max’s fantasy world. But the monsters were adorable and Max was enchanting.
It was wild but heartfelt. Even if it didn’t play up to my girly-girl sensibilities, it’s always good to take a look at the world through another pair of eyes.