Creative Blessings (Or, Thank Goodness My Brain Works)

I heard some news from a friend this weekend, that led to this post. The friend in question is going through a VERY tough experience (not my place to say more). I guess as well as offering comfort, we all count our blessings when we hear of other people’s hardship. It got me thinking about the things I would call blessings, and of course I have all the ‘usual’ ones, and I’m very glad of them:

A loving and supportive (if occasionally annoying) husband 😉
An always-there-for-me best friend, and a little team of other great friends
Four mad cats that always cheer me up
A lovely house
A paying job
Pretty good health

But what blessing am I most grateful for? My MIND. Let me explain.
For a start, it works. Mostly. 🙂 It’s wired up reasonably well. I don’t suffer from any mental health issues.
I’m quite intelligent. (What? – long-suffering-hubby). Yes, I said it. I can understand forms and do sums and even fill in a tax return correctly!
But I’m most grateful for my IMAGINATION. It’s got me through some of the darkest patches in my life.
I didn’t have a particularly happy childhood. I was bullied at school for being clever and ‘different’. At home, I had an emotionally (and occasionally physically) abusive father. I escaped into books, but also into worlds I created for myself. Sometimes I wrote stuff down, sometimes I didn’t, but there was always a story being told inside my head.
Many years later, when I was forced by circumstances to deal with my father once more, I started this blog and began writing fiction again, and I swear that those things went a long way to keeping me sane during that time.
If I have money worries or job stress or whatever, I write down what I can do to sort the problem out (I’ve always been a great maker of lists). Then, I escape into my head and compose a story, or scribble something in my writer’s notebook, or type away on my iPad or computer.
I know there are many other ways to take one’s mind off problems: go for a walk, watch a movie, vent to a friend – and I’ve done all these. But in the middle of the night, when my brain won’t switch off, I can always escape into an imaginary world. Some of those worlds have seen the light of day on this blog, others haven’t. But they’re always there.

Occasionally, I got told off as a child for ‘having my head in the clouds’. Or a book. As an adult, I can balance the real world and my creative one. I like the real world, mostly. But sometimes, the one in my head is better. 😉

Image courtesy of news.stanford.edu

Image courtesy of news.stanford.edu

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18 thoughts on “Creative Blessings (Or, Thank Goodness My Brain Works)

  1. As a child, I was admonished often on long car vacations to “get your nose out of that book” — so I could look around at the sights we were whizzing past, like the Grand Canyon. Now on road trips, I’m always looking at it all, so I can imagine stories. Glad you reminded me what a gift we have in our imaginations.

  2. Great post, Karen. I am sorry for your friend’s pain, but I am pleased your chose to find the positives in your life rather than let the negatives of your friend get you down.
    I love the lightness of your post and the list of things you are thankful for. I, too, am grateful that my brain works, well, most of the time anyway. Imagination is great to escape into. How wonderful that, as writers, we need no other excuse! 🙂

  3. It is a blessing indeed to have an imagination. Books and imaginary worlds can be a great escape and lets face it we all need to sometimes. Great post and nice to read a different take on blessings.

    #SundayBlogShare

  4. This is a wonderful piece of writing. I found my escape in books and could ‘cut’ out what was happening around about me I literally got ‘lost’ in the book. I took refuge in a book or a wonderful piece of music. I hope your friend finds strength to get through the difficulties.

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