Superheroes, Fairies, Magic, Sea Monsters: The world of a child is full of magic. So do you encourage it because the role playing and imagination is meant to be good for their development. Or do you worry about what will happen when the reality of life hits them?
Then there is romance, princesses, and happily ever after. Does that really help our children create fulfilling relationships?
Even the question of aliens is an interesting one?
My mum used a very subtle form of brain washing to make sure that I didn’t sleep with anyone at an early age: it’s called afternoons full of old black and white movies, where all they do is hold hands! It definitely worked as I was a very ‘good girl’, but maybe just a little too much, as possibly a bit more ‘bad girl’ could have been fun. In my 30’s I found that my inherent romantisicm had caused me a lot of pain, and I tried to become much more sensible about it all. But now in my 40’s I’m thinking, ‘whats the point about life is there is no romance or magic in it?’.
I’ve actually had to work with clients who were so badly affected by desperately wanting the kind of romance depicted in the Twilight movies, that they had gone beyond pure enjoyment and into the realm of it badly affecting their relationships and day to day lives.
My decision not to go into science because I thought everything had been discovered, but now I watch the astronomy programs on the television and see what has been invented since, and realise how incorrectly I was taught at school. According to the daily mail, there is actually the chance that Sea Monsters exist.
But at the same point in time, a massive part of the reason behind depression, especially in Mums, is the fact that they had a fantasy of how life should be, especially in terms of what being a Mum or being married would be like. So fantasies can cause huge amounts of pain and suffering for people.
So clearly being too romantic or too logical doesn’t work. With Curly Headed Boy I try to walk a difficult line between fairy stories, the esoterics and philosophies that I have been taught, and science. He like me will need to have magic and romance in his life. But, it needs to be tempered with a big dose of reality so that he doesn’t find real life a disappointment. I make my decisions on a subject by subject basis: so faeries are real; some other things like aliens might be, but we don’t know yet, ghosts are not what people think (i.e. not scary dead souls wandering around); father christmas is real and the tooth fairy is real (I reckon I can blame society for that little white lie when it comes up); ‘the force’ is real (I am a Reiki Master after all), but I can only teach him ‘the healing force’ not the fighting version and we can’t meet Yoda; Buzz lightyear is a great story; Magicians are really clever, magic exists, but I don’t know anyone who does it. We’ll see, I hope that I get the balance right between just the right amount of freedom to imagine, but not too much to ruin real life.
So to help you ponder this question, what else that Queen’s ‘It’s a kind of magic’ for our video wednesday: it had to be really didn’t it!