There was once a time where I believed that the world around me was easily defined in colors of black and white. I wanted my world to be like those old cliches where everything beautiful always defeats the darkness, and every person who is evil are as ugly outside as they are inside. These were the things that I wished would be true, but I know now that this was not something that was true.
When I was a little girl I was given this small bear from my father as a birthday present, it was supposed to keep me safe. How a toy bear can keep a person safe is beyond me, because it didn’t do its job. To be fair, I think the bear was part of the reason I grew up with so many problems. At age 5 I was convinced that someone was whispering things to me in my sleep, things about how I was going to die alone with no one to miss me. My thoughts at night were swamped with the images of people telling me how I disgusted them on a daily basis, and I believed the voices… they were my subconscious after all weren’t they? Not even close.
One night when I had turned 15, perhaps a bit too old to be sleeping with a teddy bear, but I didn’t care what other people thought of me. I ended up waking up this night during the voice whispering things to me, and saw something that scared me out of my mind. The voice that I had always heard in my head was that of a small child who was extremely convincing to my mind that had been weakened over time, and when I reached for my bear it was to find that it was staring at me. I looked back at the bear, and reached out to it since I had no reason to be scared of a toy. I was wrong. As I stretched my arms out to grasp the bear closer to me the eyes caught the moonlight that was flooding my room from the open window, and they seemed to take on a menacing light.
“You aren’t supposed to be awake,” the bear’s child-like voice caroled at me, and I could feel the cold sweat beading on my head. I immediately thought of that movie Chucky, and I knew that this toy was trouble.
“I– I’m sorry….” I croaked out, and then I saw a blade coming toward my face as the toy jumped for me.
“You should know better than to wake up while I am talking to you!” it screamed at me, and I let out a shriek like that of a banshee. I pop-tarted out of bed and ran for the closest room that had matches. The toy bear pursued me down the hall with it’s knife clutched within his fisted paw. “COME BACK!!!”
I made it to the kitchen, and dug out the matches before rushing outside into the stifling summer night, and waited. Just as I assumed, the bear came running right toward me, and before it had time to do anymore than get within 3 feet of me I splashed the toy in kerosene and struck the match which I then hurled away.
That damn bear burned like a forest fire in California, and soon there was nothing left of my insecurities. All was well, and I no longer felt that I wasn’t good enough.