He sat there staring at me like a history buff would stare restlessly at a Da Vinci painting looking for hidden clues to some historical secret yet to be unfolded. In turn, I was staring at the wall, my mind wandering to places I wanted to be in. But it was so hard not to be annoyed.
Me: What is wrong with you?
Me: Well then turn your eyes somewhere else, I know you’re imaginary and all but it still feels uncomfortable.
Tubby: Relax, it’s not like I’m contemplating your beauty. I just envy you, I mean human beings in general
Me: Envy us? You’ve never said anything like this, what’s this about?
Tubby: Your ability to dream. It’s fascinating. You know how you make up all these wonderlands inside your head, even people you like who don’t necessarily exist in real life, scenarios that are theoretically impossible to happen, things like that. And the beauty of it is that the mind believes everything you tell it so it still feels as good as real.
Me: Yeah, that’s quite amazing, but you know there is more to dreams than building castles in the air. Dreams are also about ambitions and making plans for life, you know human things like that.
Tubby: Yes, yes… I get it. And I’m sure when these dreams come true they feel even better than the dream.
Tubby: What’s so funny?
Me: You see, I’ve come to discover that when a dream comes true it is usually feels less glamorous than it did when it was still a dream. Not worse, just different. I mean, it stills feels great and all but it becomes REAL, and real means responsibility and thinking about the next step and much more. Like when I published a book, it has always been a dream, and everyone was asking me how it feels to hold your own book in your hands and it is amazing, one of the best things that has ever happened to me and I’m so grateful. Yet, I didn’t enjoy this moment as much as I had imagined because I’m constantly thinking about reviews and distribution and writing another book, things like this.
Tubby: And you think that applies to everything?
Me: Pretty much. You know, like when people get married, they always dream of this perfect relationship then when things don’t turn as perfect as they’d imagined they get frustrated. Or when people graduate college, they think real life will welcome them with open arms…
Tubby: Nobody thinks that anymore…
Me: maybe not consciously, but deep inside we always have this hope that things will turn out fine. Which is good, it’s good to have this feeling, but it’s also good to keep your dreams in check.
Tubby: Do you?
Me: well, I’ve learned to pick my dreams carefully. If it’s something that’s impossible to happen I go crazy, because I know there’s no harm in dreaming about it as long as I realize it’s just a dream. However, if it’s something I’m planning to do in reality, a project or a plan, then I don’t dream, I visualize, I think, I use my imagination wisely, because I want it to be real, where the rules of the universe apply.
Tubby: Speaking of which, you should use your imagination more wildly.
Me: I know. I found that I’m not tapping into my full imagination capacity when I write. See, that’s an example: when I write I need to use my imagination to the full extent, while after writing when it’s about publishing and all these things that aren’t related to the creative process, I need to get real and deal with things professionally, like a business woman.
Tubby: It’s funny that you’re saying that since you’re the worse business woman I’ve ever seen
Me: Well, that’s another issue, but we learn by trial and error, you know.
Tubby: Yes, you do learn. But I know it’s hard.
Me: what is hard?
Tubby: Getting real after you’ve been living in your own world for 28 years.
Me: Not exactly, I’ve always been real when I needed it. It’s just that sometimes life forces you to bring it up a notch. But I still have my own world, your part of it.
Tubby: Or maybe you’re apart of mine
Me: No, wise guy. You’re not going to mess with my head. I’m real, you’re imaginary. Now drink your tea and scramble out of here.