MULTIPLE PERSONALITIES OR WALTER MITTY SYNDROME?
Could I have multiple personality disorder?
Maybe so, because I am having trouble keeping track of who I am. See, I met a lady whose daughter wants to learn to ride horses and my mind flashed back to days and daydreams gone by. One of those dreams was of riding cross country on horseback, camping along the way. I could see it; I might could still do it. Of course, I don’t have a horse, I don’t know anyone here who does have a horse, and I can’t even camp out on an air mattress on my own floor without paying a mighty price. Caught up in the throes of this personality, however, I immediately went downstairs and checked on the well-being of the saddle I can’t quite seem to give up. It was alive and well and beaming out hope.
I never went on that horseback trip back in those days because I was doing the whole 40-hour work week thing, broken up by a two-week vacation in the summer with the kids. See? That’s yet another personality. I enjoyed writing for a living, and I enjoyed my children. We had a blast on those vacations.
Now I am retired. The 40-hour routine is done with, and the children have long flown the coop. I now have the freedom to reinvent myself however I choose. Well, there are limitations because most of my would-be inventions involve substantial amounts of money – which I don’t currently have (enter the lottery winning personality).
A few days ago, I watched a movie called “Dog,” and I got right on Google and started browsing websites looking for puppies and envisioning my solitary life with my faithful canine companion. I briefly considered a career as an animal communicator. I’ve read about that, but so far, I have never intuited anything animals might want to pass along to me or others. So, I guess that plan is shot to heck.
Today I was watching a movie about a former movie star who escaped her old-folks home (these days they are called retirement communities or assisted living) and went on an impromptu adventure to France. So, I promptly checked my passport to be sure I could just jump and run at a moment’s notice. Again, the money thing reared its ugly little head.
Over the past couple of years, I have imagined a semi-reclusive life in the mountains growing herbs and creating healing ointments and elixers. In that particular life movie, Bambi and the racoons all gather round my doorstep awaiting my company, while birds sing on the porch rails and chipmunks scurry around my feet.
In a different reel, I am traveling the country seeing stuff and selling books at independent book stores from coast to coast. In yet another, I own only a suitcase, a carryon, and good shoes. I disembark from a 30-day cruise and climb onto a bus for a European tour. Then I spend a couple of months in a cottage in Scotland, and maybe back onto a ship for another cruise.
As I replaced my passport, dusted my saddle, and checked the herb garden, I realized that these competing visions of the future might not be what most people experience, so I sat down to really analyze this issue. And that’s when I came up with MPD. The only problem there is that all my personalities are perfectly well aware of the others, and no one is in charge.
Ideally, I would integrate these folks into one free spirit who wears silk palazzo pants while riding a horse into the mountains to feed the deer and forage for wild herbs to make medicines to take on the ship when I sail away to summer in the south of France.
But therapists aren’t cheap either, so I guess we will all have to try to live together peacefully. Or maybe it isn’t a disorder at all. Maybe it’s Walter Mitty syndrome. Or maybe they are all really choices and I have some fun times ahead. The only problem is that troublesome issue of money. You know what they say, “Money is the root of all adventure.”