So I'm watching this movie, or something, and there's this guy in it. He's doing normal stuff, at his job, working around the house, interacting with spouse and/or kids...and then there's a conflict. I've seen movies before like this. I'm in this guy's head, I know what he's thinking, how what's happening or what people are saying is making him feel, and I know he could flip out any second. Part of me wouldn't blame him, would even cheer for him as he crashed the car into the divider, let the fragile kitchen light fixture fall to the floor because it just wouldn't go in right, turned and screamed at his wife right there in front of the kids.
Then I wake up to the realization that I'm not watching a movie, or reading a book, or witnessing a scene at a restaurant. It's not another man in the conflict, it's me. And it's not someone else's problem to solve, it's mine. And it's not another person for whom I have no responsibility on the edge of making a rash, potentially dangerous decision, it's just only me.
It's not a "what's he going to do?" moment, it's a "what am I going to do?" moment.
How I learned this kind of escapism I don't know, but what really puzzles me is what triggers it. I'll just be going along my merry way, tasks of varying ends and importance, and I find myself in that dream world. If I could solve that mystery, I would no longer have the momentary relief of wondering how this third person is going to reconcile this or that, or solve this or that problem, deal with this or that person, or get through this or that day...but I might, oh I hope I might, be able to better face the real life that I am living, love the real people I am with, and make the best out of every day I am given.