Anna Improv

Yesterday I was playing with my niece Anna and for a short time she became my guru.  No, I did not find enlightenment or have to go to live in a cave or even receive a Koan from her that I was supposed to meditate on for days.  Instead, she reminded me that within our imagination is a world so rich, so alive, that it can ignite in us a moment of connection and joy.  That it is so powerful it reminds us of the preciousness of being alive, being connected and creating a world, we want to be in.  And this got me thinking, why can’t we use our imagination to create the work world or the type of relationships we want to be in with a partner or friend and even a boss.  At least, we can explore the possibilities.

It started with an improv game I was playing with Anna called one word story, it moved on to one sentence story and it finished with a full out play being created on the spot. Had you been there, you would have seen the following scene: I was the co-pilot flying through space to get back from King KiKi’s palace heading toward earth… at times we had to veer high up in the sky or go faster to avoid the Wall monster… an actual moving wall that tried to attack us (reminded me of the rock monster mountain in the Never Ending Story).

Next, you would have seen us come in for a crash landing back on Earth… I am not sure if we crashed because of the rough travel or because midway into our landing Anna ripped out the steering column and barked this command at me, “Here now you drive”… thankfully another steering column appeared back on her side and together we piloted our ship safely back to earth.

Little did we know, but thanks to Anna’s insight, Earth had been taken over by monsters… some friendly and some not so friendly… so we proceeded to put on our monster protection outfits and engage some of these roaming monsters.  Once on the planet, we came upon the huge eyed monster which was just a set of eyes… this one  could wreak havoc. In a whisper, we moved around the house securing the location so the eyes could not get us.

We developed a plan that would allow our space suits to protect us and we defeated the giant eyes… we could see them out the window in all their glory… yes we were afraid, but we took the necessary actions to make sure they, although dangerous, were not a threat to our well being.  Finally, Anna said, “we are safe, I must go to bobo.”  (Anna speak for: I need to go to sleep now).

In our adventure, we met many strange and rich people including a small family who lived in a piece of broken plastic, the Kingstons, really wonderful people. And we had navigated the heavens without trepidation, avoided monsters seeking to eat us and created a world that allowed us to live without fear even as we were surrounded by uncertainty.

Today, as I continue the uncertain voyage that we call life, and I think about how fun playing was,  I remember that I am flying my spaceship though the universe, steering and at times being steered, and remembering… we are safe in connection, trust, and being in the moment.  Commander “Uncle Chris”  signing off and remembering that the best way through the wall is around it, in a space ship with dual steering… take the wheel and live the life you want to create.