Remember the role fantasy used to play in your life?
Perhaps you bit your eraser in school and looked out the window, . . .
taking yourself back to Independence Hall in Philadelphia, listening to the debates surrounding the writing of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. . .
Or to Victorian England, becoming Elizabeth Bennet or Mr. Darcy.
Maybe your fantasies moved from other lives and eras to your own.
What would it be like to stand in front of a classroom like Mrs. Lochner is doing now?
What would it be like to fall in love?
For many people, middle age ends fantasy. The day-to-day pressures of work, family, and finance replace the dreamy carefree stages of youth. Did that happen to you without your realizing it?
Here is Laura Carstensen, Founding Director of the Stanford Center on Longevity,
in her book A Long Bright Future
Imagine what it might be like to live to a healthy, happy one hundred. Start daydreaming about the autumn of your life as much as you daydreamed about finding your perfect love when you were a teenager. . . . imagine in vivid detail what you’ll want to do once your principal obligations in life to your family and employers are behind you, and your time is truly your own.
As I turn from looking at childhood in my memoir to looking to the future in my Jubilación posts, I’m at the stage of doing my homework.
Let me know if you want to ride along on this journey, and please offer your own dreams and companions on the way — books you love, people you admire.
Let’s start with this challenge. Assuming you will live to be 100 (or 90 or 80, the number is less important than the idea), what do you most want? Do you have an image of yourself? If not, why not? When and why did you stop dreaming?