Life would mean little without a mouth to express yourself. Or a mobile body to take you places. To be inanimate, to lack of motion, to be essentially a mind trapped in a holding cell that is the self. Like a tree, one that never bows to the wind around it. The leaves, the wind and rain, all of it surpassing you. What would be the purpose of thoughts, feelings or emotions? Why exist if there's nothing to live or die for? This soul of mine ponders that. Would you ever find joy as a figure that sits motionless forever? I know I did. My joy, and happiness came in the form of some outside force, that manipulated the way I feel. Unlike the wind surpassing the tree, something stopped and cared for me. My only love was a little girl, who showed me what love and joy is.
Little Amanda meant so much to me. I've been with her practically all her life. Nothing could stand between us. I stood there, as wise and immobile as a tree. She used to look down on me with wide, sparkling bright eyes. Each time I felt like I was being blessed by an angel. Why does it matter if I couldn't actually show it. She must have thought I was the cutest thing alive. I know that's not true. I am simply a lifeless hairy rag. Inside me is nothing but cotton wrapped in a furry exterior. I wish I could know how soft I felt. She would hold me all through night, clinging to my warmth. I was created to be calm and gentle, that has always been my purpose. I'm like a pillow in a way. I am designed to bring comfort. I'm also sure she found my compact face, and plastic, glossy eyes adorable. I can't see myself, unless someone holds me against the mirror. I can't even move. I'm just an ordinary brown teddy bear.
As much as she adored me, it was nothing compared to how I felt about her. She was the only person that ever showed me love. This made her like an angel for me. Although she seeked asylum and escape in me, it was I who needed her. Without her meant I was useless, nothing but piled up mess of fur and cotton. It wasn't until this girl brought meaning inside of me, that I had a reason to exist. I couldn't say how much I loved her, because I couldn't speak. Nor can I speak now. My mouth is sewn shut, along with all the rest of my body. I doubt she ever knew I could think. Never could I show a sign of being sentient. The world believes I'm lifeless, just an inanimate object, and you know what... I'm starting to agree. The only purpose I serve is the one given to me. I wasn't born with value, I was given value. I can not make a difference, I can't even move or talk or anything. I'm just a soul with an immobile body.
However Amanda gave me all the meaning I needed to make it through life. She was the most wonderful thing in my life. I knew her since she was a beautiful little girl. At the age of three, she had her mother purchase me at a thrift store. I don't know what it is about me, but she loved me from the instant she laid eyes on me. Why me? Nothing made me special in comparison to the other artificial stuffed companions. If anything I was just an ordinary brown teddy bear, I faded into the background. She however stuck out like the sun in the sky. She had long blond hair, red cheeks, and the most innocent looking smile. Her eyes were as bright blue as the ocean during the heart of day. I had never seen such a perfect little angel in all my life. She was small when first picked me out. Almost as small as me. She had to lift me up with both hands. As soon as she brought me home she gave me life in a sense. She talked to me, told me how much she loved me, even with her limited vocabulary. She played with me. It was all just wonderful. I know I couldn't possibly respond, or move at all to play with her, but I didn't need to. She simply made my actions and words up. Whether or not I could do anything in reality meant nothing to me, as long as I was alive in her heart.
The early years were the best times. I spend my days confined to her room. Her family never had much, but imagination doesn't run on money. No more than the ten cents it cost to buy me. I was always carefree. Teddy bears don't have jobs, teddy bears don't have responsibilities. My life consists of resting still forever. However this was the only time I felt carefree. These were the glory days of spring, when I was my happiest. When I was truly carefree. I was carefree because she was carefree. Humans aren't like Teddy Bears. I had all the time in the world to play with her. People just don't work that way. Humans have life and responsibility. They have to deal with the everyday hassles of caring for themselves. However Teddy Bears don't have the gift of autonomy, something you humans take for granted.
Being limited to the times where she was free, I had to cherish the fleeting moments of her childhood. And that was what I did. During her early years, she was as cute as a button. It was a silly and fun time. We would go on quests, explore exotic lands, have tea parties, all in one room. At the time, it was as if there were no walls. Her imagination knew no boundaries. It was just a laugh to listen to the things she had come up with. I could feel her energy. She ran about at speeds that were probably lightning fast in her mind. She'd grip my arm with her tiny hands, and take me along for the ride, dragging me all across the house. In my mind I'd just play along. Sometimes I'd forget if I'm supposed to be in a spaceship or a race car.
Her energy would calm as the sun would dive bellow the horizon. It was so hard to even think she could get tired. As soon as night fell, she began to sleep like an angel. Her father would make her go to bed at about the same time every night. I never really knew the dude, but he seemed like a good man. Sometimes it would be easy, other times more difficult. She never made too much of a fuss over it. However there were times when she'd rather continue on her adventures, than take her rest. Eventually she had to comply, and I would always be there when she did. With all the energy she had during the day, it was no wonder she slept like an angel during the night.
She would lie down on her bed, beneath her covers, resting her head on her pillow. Her arms would be wrapped around me, tightly. I must have her feel all warm inside. At least that was how I felt. This was when I felt like my primary function was actually applied. She held me all through the night, and snuggled up against me. We were both happy, she slept peacefully each night. I don't sleep, ever... All I was left to do was savor the tender moment we had together. Finally, after resting in her embrace for hours, the sun came up. Slowly her beautiful blue eyes would open, and she'd be ready to do it all over again.
Those times meant more to me than anythings else in the world. We were free and innocent those days. However those times faded away like sand in wind, leaving nothing but memories remaining. Life does indeed go on, a little faster than I would have hoped. Yet it's all part of life. I'll never know what growing up feels like, but from what I've witnessed, it means hard work. This was when my purpose of comfort and vitality truly mattered. It wasn't just a game anymore. She started actually need me. She was of age, so they sent her to kindergarten. It didn't mean much to me at the time. All it meant was I'd have to wait for her to come back.
It would happen, and we'd have fun the way we used to, for a while that is. Like an child would and should, she started to mature as she progressed through elementary school. She was sharp, creative, and very articulate for her age. However not lacking the warmth and love that she gave me when she was littler. We still had a connection with each other, although a fleeing one. It only meant, less playing pretend and more talking about problems, less tea party's and more study time. I listen to these problems, I just wish I could offer some advice on them. The biggest issue she had to deal with was bullying. Some of the other boys and girls would tease her and make fun of her. She would go to me, and tell me all about it. I just wish I could come alive for a second, so I could beat the stuffing out of them.
I never knew how she acted around her peers. All I knew was that she was smart, kind, and totally undeserving of such treatment. The words they used were awful and as she progressed it seems to have gotten worse. She was teased for being socially awkward and always wanting to read. Personally I don't think her taking extra time to make good grades is a bad thing at all. At first people called her "Nerd", "Egghead", "Loser". That brought spite in my heart in itself. Then the language the kids started using started getting more deplorable. The words she was repeating to me were getting more and more vile. I feel sick to live in a world were kids this young even know these words, let alone use them. It started to really break my heart hearing the words repeated out of her mouth.
Then again what could I do about it, other than be warm and cute. I'm just a teddy bear. I knew she had friends too, she spent long whiles telling me about them. Despite the fact that some kids had been complete jerks to her, she was still somewhat happy. She had her friends and they seemed like nice people from her description. There was one topic that was difficult for me, even more so than the bullies... boys. She probably should have talked to a pink teddy bear with a satin ribbon, because I knew very little on the topic of romance. However I must admit it was cute hearing her talk about her innocent per-adolescent crushes. She was starting reach the higher level of elementary school and make her way on through middle school.
Eventually she stopped sleeping alongside me all together. She still picked me up and cuddled me once in a while, when she was talking about some boy at school, but we no longer spend nights in each others arms. My new resting place was on the top of a cold hard shelf. You'd think it would tear me apart but no actually. This was a normal part of growing up. I couldn't blame her for not being as the same way she was when she was a toddler. I instead looked at my new spot as a badge of honor. It felt like I had retired from the days of keeping her warm at night, and playing dress up with her. I was an old bear, most kids would have gotten rid of me by now, but she still kept me. This new spot was elevated, it felt like I was a living symbol of all my work. That gave me a sense of pride. I'd been a good teddy.
I felt myself begin to wither away. I was proud of all my work with her. From my pedistool at he top of the shelf, I'd look down at her and see what a becoming young girl she was. This was how it was during her middle school years. She was cute, fun, and smart, sometimes she'd look me smile at me. It was like life had given me a token of gratitude just for being there for her. I never did anything though, I just stood there. After all, I'm only a stuffed animal. I began to feel like she's keeping me out of nostalgia, although deep down there was still love inside us both. It was hard for me to go on. I missed having her talk to me, or rant about her problems to me. Deep down it was I who longed for nostalgia.
I deeply coveted the days of old. I'd wear any frilly hat or embarrassing get-up from her mom's closet just to play with her again, even for a short time. Like it was when we were kids. Unfortunately those days are gone, and I had to come to terms with the fact that she just didn't need me anymore. Those memories we made was the only sunshine that was left to shine on me. Yet there were no storms or wind and rain either. As discarded as I felt, the pride of showing all that love to Amanda was enough to warm my heart in many ways.
As my fading memories were beginning to turn to gray, something great happened. I was standing in my usual spot, atop the shelf. It always reminded me of the phrase, "It's lonely at the top." However my lonesomeness was about to cease, very soon. She rushed in the room and hopped on the bed, giggling uncontrollably. If I were capable of facial expressions there would be a big smile on my face. She picked me up, still laughing and kissed my on the nose. Then she rested me on the bed, and started talking to me about this boy. Back in her elementary school years I'd dread these conversations, but now I'm just glad that she's speaking to me at all. Plus this time is different. She's not mindlessly describing a boy that she had a crush on, this was serious. I was proud and concerned to find out that she finally had a boyfriend.
I know I'm not her father, I'm her stuffed animal, what right to I have to be worried? I was though, I've never met this guy. He could be dangerous, then again what kind of stuffed animal would I be to think like that? The answer is a concerned one. I eventually thought that all my worries were just garbage. When I heard her describe him, it sounded like she was describing perfection. Hearing the magic in her voice was all I needed, to know that he'd be right for her. She was ecstatic the whole time, jumping up and down. She reminded me of the same giggling school girl she was in elementary. It was all quite heartwarming.
It didn't end there either. She started to talk to me a little bit more, even though she's in high school. It was like reliving my favorite moments in life. Only she could make idle banter sound so sweet. I didn't hear her say much about bullies either so there was no reason for me to be unhappy. The worst news I'd ever get was her getting an F or being grounded. And all that meant was that she'd spend more time with me. For a while I was glad to see life was treating her well. I knew she was growing up, but it didn't mean she'd have to ignore me. We were still having fun. That was all I ever existed for anyway, so she could have fun.
However as the games begin, so shall they end. This was when she needed me more than ever. I know high school is a hard time in anyone's life. However I kept hearing increasingly saddening stories from her about her life. Apparently over the period of a few weeks, she started to lose everything that made her happy. It was so shocking for me to hear her about her so called friends. My favorite quality about her was her will, and her strength. No means no with her. She would never do what she knows is wrong to fit in. However she didn't think she'd have to. She and I were under the conviction that her friends were nice and loyal. It was all a lie. I had to start listening to more of her sorrow than ever before. She profane name calling, the bullying, it was all coming back and worse. But what hurt the most was the fact that these names were coming from people she trusted wholeheartedly. All year it was like this. I could almost feel myself sinking down to the level of depression she was in. She really, really needed someone.
I tried to help her, but I couldn't. It was all too much for me to do. Teddy Bears maybe good for cheering up little girls, but not comforting, what is essentially a young woman. I began to resent the high spot on the shelf that she chose to place me at. I deserved the floor. I never did anything for her. Nothing mattered to me anymore, it was like the days before she picked me out, in that cold, dirty thrift store, all those years ago. I didn't know how I could cope with what was going on in life. There were days where she'd literally come home from school in tears. I was gladly there for her to hold as she cried. The sound of her voice breaking, and the sight her walking in with tears along her face was a powerful one. It only made me feel more useless. I wasn't holding her, she was holding me, not that I didn't need it. The last days I spent with her were utter torture of the soul.
I wished all my life that things would go back to the way they were. When we'd lay against one another, and sleep in peaceful comfort. Like cons and deceit, wishes have no aim to them. They come and go like specks of dust blowing in the gentle breeze. They can't be tied down or controlled. However it's never guaranteed that they won't come true. It is guaranteed that they won't come in the form you want them to. The whole room felt cold as soon as she walked in. She was sobbing loud and uncontrollably. She had cried many tears, but something about today suggested true heartbreak. It lasted all night. Because of how heavily she was sobbing I had a very difficult time understanding her speech. It was painful to listen to anyway. The boy that meant so much to her was now gone. The scoundrel had violated her trust, and was out pursuing relationships with another girl.
This made me almost as sad as she was. Why would he betray her trust like that? He was all she had and now he's gone. There was an invisible storm cloud shrouding the room. I was honestly frightened by her display of broken heartedness. As bad as it's gotten in the past, this was the worst it's gotten ever. She left the room for a bit. It was getting late, about the same time her father used to make her go to bed when she was little. When she came back she was much more stable. There was still unbearable sadness in her every motion, but this time less animated. The extreme display of sadness, crying, screaming, falling over, had subsided, now she's reached a depressed state. I doubt she could have even found a tear inside of her if she wanted to cry. She looked tired, and walked very clumsily. I didn't know what was going on, all I knew was that she had picked me and held me close that very moment.
She turned out the lights, and rested her body on the bed. I finally got my wish, she held me tightly, as she began to drift off to sleep. She was much bigger than she was when she was little, but the feeling remained the same. She still slept like an angel, and never before had she been so quiet and peaceful. She closed her eyes and rested her head on her pillow. Her arms were as tight as they'd ever been as she pulled me closer towards her. The only sound that was made was the sound of her breathing, which slowly began to quiet. This had never happened until now, and never would it happen again. As it turned out, her friends and lover turning on her was more than just enough to make her feel worthless, it was enough to take her away from me. When she left for that moment, she consumed mass quantities of sleeping pills. Or so I assume. All I knew was that as quickly as she fell asleep, she was no longer in this world.
I knew she was gone, and the pain I felt was like nothing I'd ever felt before. The feeling of greif was overflowing me. I wanted to cry, but I couldn't move my face. It was torture to be unable to physically express your sorrow. The emotions pile up, and there's nothing you can do about it. Then something impossible happened. A fresh tear began to roll down my cheek. I felt it, it was actually real, not just in my mind. My eyes are made of shiny plastic, it's not possible for me to shed tears, but I did. I just wish Amanda was alive to see it happen. This was beyond science, something that couldn't ever happen, just happened. That was when I knew I was useless, there was no way I could have saved her. I tried as hard as I could. Even without talking, moving or even breathing I did all I could to lift her up. In the end I failed her. I was then left with the infinite grief of letting her slip away from me. I was as heart warmed and I was saddened to look back and see that I was the last thing she held before she died.
I never did get over her death, nor can I ever forgive the people who drove her to it. I'm not back where I started, alone. My new hold is the same as my old home. My old, old home, the thrift store. As I speak I sit here on the cobweb filled shelves, waiting to bring magic into another child's life, or at least try. I beautiful little girl, with blond hair, blue eyes, and red cheeks approaches me. She stares at me, before calling for her mommy. The glow in her face and the magic of her smile is hauntingly familiar...