Ever since I was a little girl I have lived in a fantasy world. Whether I was dressing up as the first lady or lining up my stuffed animals to be their teacher, wild ideas and stories swarmed into my mind. The scenarios that would pop into my imagination were things that some people cannot fathom. I could be isolated in a room for days on end and never get bored because my mind was an alternate universe. I would start off my day as a princess and end the day as a secret agent. The opportunities were endless. I lived in a world created by my imagination and, more often than not I lost sight of reality. I would have legitimate conversations with myself and refuse to let go of my fantasies.
It was because of my immeasurable imagination that my dad nicknamed me Gatsby. I loved the name, but never understood it. After taking a break from dreaming up cotton candy clouds, beautiful yellow ball gowns, and my Prince Charming, I picked up a copy of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby. I realized that the Gatsby my dad was referring to was Jay Gatsby. I told my dad about my discovery and he said it was about time I read about the man that would be my best friend if he actually existed.
When I read the book I did not initially see the connection between us. When I asked my dad, he said we were similar because “you both live in your imagination with vivid fantasies. You have a sense of innocence. You would always protect those you love, and are proud of who you are despite difficulties.” With that fatherly insight, I decided to re-read the classic novel where “gin was the national drink, and sex the national obsession.” With every page, the correlation between us became more and more recognizable. It was his willingness to take blame for the murder of Myrtle and his countless fights, or “creative discussions”, that linked