Follow by email:

Monday, 6 May 2013

Just My Imagination (Running Away with Me) (part 2)

My daughter made a belt at preschool. She decided her dress needed a belt so she made it out of paper, all by herself, and wore it for the rest of the day.



It's not the first time she's done this. She's also made a hat (though the Cancer Council wouldn't approve it) and some Hello Kitty ears, and worn them for the day. Unprompted, all by herself.
I don't think my child is a genius, budding fashion designer or anything exceptional for doing this.(though we all know our own kids are better than everyone else's). I think all kids do this - they have this spark of creativity and imagination that can solve their problem instantaneously.

My question is, at what age do we lose it? And more importantly, why? Why would humans be created (and I mean in the sense of evolution & Darwin or God, either is applicable) with this imagination if it never gets used beyond youth? It's almost like a super power in children that fades with age.

So why get it in the first place? What is it's evolutionary/survival purpose?

And why do we have to lose it? Have we, the society,  created the constraints that make it obsolete?
Why can't we say "I'd love a Dior dress, I'll just use that butchers paper and whip one up" and then see it as an item of perfection, and worthy of wearing for the day?

No matter how happy an adult is, it's never the same as that unbridled joy of a child. The child who is so content to slide endlessly down the same slide or create a hospital in the living room to be the nurse and care for the sick toys.

Once it's lost, can you never really get it back?

I'm curious if anyone has any insight on this? Or does anyone else even worry about the concept? (I know I'm probably out on a limb here...)

Linking up with the lovely Jess for IBOT at Essentially Jess.




PS. A long while back, I wrote this lament to the loss of imagination in our humdrum adult lives, so clearly I have more of an issue with this than most, as it's cropped up again for me.

20 comments:

  1. I have thought about this once or twice but only very fleetingly - now I will ponder it inbetween getting month end accounts finished and wondering how I am going to get two tax returns completed and to the accountant by the end of the weekend given we have a 21st on Saturday night at home (and all the related madness around the house and garden to make it presentable on the night) and the actual birthday and Mother's Day on Sunday !!!
    Sometimes I long to be a child again - not that my imagination was that great from what I remember, but just to have no worries for those years !!
    Have the best day !
    Me

    ReplyDelete
  2. I think about it often. I have no creativity and lament that loss.
    I do think it is 'beaten' out of us. We have to conform to fit in, to be a 'good' girl or boy. We are told no, we are told don't do that. I am guilty of it often with my son and it worries me that I may well take it away in an effort to bring him up well.
    How do we balance what is right and wrong, what is seen as manners and what is dangerous with allowing them to be free to think, play, create and feel the way they do and take that with them into their adult life?
    Becc @ Take Charge Now

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't think you can say you have NO creativity ;)
      That's the question, are we the parents, in part responsible for making them lose it?

      Delete
  3. Wow! Those are some great questions - that I probably don't have the answers for! I think though, it is the naivity that we lose. We learn right from wrong, and what is risk and what are consequences. We learn judgement from being judged or seeing others judged. I think this all impacts on who we turn out to be.
    I like to think I still have my imagination and creativity (through my writing), but I also know I have lost that unbridled childhood happiness. x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. unbridled happiness...we all need a bit of that!

      Delete
  4. I know. It's a bit sad isn't it? I remember when I was about 11 and I had all these grand plans for the future. I was going to be a hairdresser/ fashion designer/ writer/ ruler of a country. I had maps and everything. Then it all fell by the wayside. Stupid real life.

    I think the really artistic, creative, successful people in life are the ones that don't lose that spark.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think you're right (stupid real life)

      Delete
  5. Some really simple yet complex questions there.
    I have thought of this MANY times, and I guess its those that dress the way they want and wear bright outfits that we as society pen as ODD that are really the true winners here.
    I am trying to move away from the conformity and wear what I want and be who I am.. but it IS hard as an adult.
    I think its just a pure joy to see this in children and I know when my time comes to have my own child im going to let those litle imaginations run free as much as possible, without danger!

    xx Meagan

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I might look at those people a little differently now...cos I think you may be right.

      Delete
  6. Those that never grow out of it are the ones at the Shopping centres that stand out, you know the ones. everyone looks at them, some people judge them, but they are just expressing themselves in a child like manner, not caring who is looking or what they are thinking. Being happy in themselves.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's a bigger issue, isn't it? Being happy in themselves.

      Delete
  7. It is sad, isn't it? But I think if we realise we're losing it, we have the opportunity to regain it. Maybe not all of that creativity (and what do they call it in French, "Joie De Vivre"?) can come back but we can always but try. There's the kid in all of us. It all depends how much we want it back.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Do you think the French have more of it if they have a term for it? Why don't we have a word for it? That's how unimportant we think it is...

      Delete
  8. I think one of the main things is time and responsibility. I think as we get older we run out of time to just be creative like that, or more so to PRACTICE creativity. It dies if you don't practice it...
    Also responsibility can lead to more stress, and if we don't see creativity as a took for survival (mostly because we really enjoy those things) then we cut them out a bit...

    ReplyDelete
  9. I lost it - stuck in the mummy fog ;)
    It is coming back to me now and ... I am grabbing it by the ears and not letting go!
    Despite the madness they drag us through, we have much to learn from our children xx

    ReplyDelete
  10. I think too, that when we are kids, we believe we can do anything and we aren't critical of what we produce. We celebrate our creations. As adults, we cast a critical eye over things perhaps too worried and aware how others would view it. Oh for the innocence of youth :)


    Hello from #teamIBOT

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Do you think we can get rid of that critical eye? And voice in our head that judges us and worries about what others think?

      Delete