Maybe Growing Up Is a Disease

It is well known among children that there are two distinct clans of mice. The Destroyers are those who chew up food containers in the pantry and leave nasty little messes around. They are lazy, house invaders, and, as their name implies, destructive. Then there are the Builders. They are the ones that help fix broken items and even clean up places that are difficult for people to reach. They live in tidy, well-ordered villages in the forest, and some families live near workshops where they assist in the trade.

Why adults have let this scientific fact escape their knowledge base is a great mystery. Perhaps the defining moment at which one becomes a grown-up is the point they lose track of that important fact.

Maybe the loss of imagination is not so much the point of growing up, but part of the collateral damage. Maybe growing up is a disease in itself.

I'm no expert on the subject, but I recall growing up once. There had not been a stress level when I was a kid. When our family was broke, we were broke. It was no big deal. I just pretended to be whatever I wanted to be.

Then for some crazy reason that escapes my memory, one day I decided I needed money. That day I became responsible for something. That must have happened sometime around the age of ten, maybe twelve. I don't actually remember. But that day the stress level began and has never let up.

Nowadays, it seems I have to intentionally channel the carefree attitude of that cute little kid from my ancient past to free up my mind. (And yes, I was actually cute once.) That may sound like escapism, but it certainly is not.

Even Jesus spoke about us having an attitude like little children. I realize He was making a point about the entirety of their trust. But the truth is, the reason we stress is we don't have that childlike trust. And the killer of imagination is stress.

Ironically, I find letting my imagination run free is very stress relieving. Somehow those two wheels of reason don't seem to be rotating in the same direction. Logically there are only two plausible conclusions. Either it doesn't work that way. Or, my imagination is a portal into another dimension.

While you read this, not far away, in a misty salt marsh behind wisps of Spanish moss, a colony of mice in a tidy village, built among the roots of an ancient cypress tree, were conducting an emergency meeting. An alligator had been spotted nearby and the mayor was concerned for the safety of their clan, especially the fishermen …