humor · mental health

Care Bear Countdown

I’m finding my favorite part about social media are bots. It gives life to my imaginary friends like some kind of modern day Pinocchio. This could be a dangerous fantasy to embrace.

I realized I have been making tons of imaginary friend jokes, but forgotten how badly I misconstrued that concept when it mattered. Maybe I should stop writing these before I remember something terrible.

I was upset an imaginary friend wouldn’t come to me. I thought they were physical creatures who allowed one special kid to see them. When none were forthcoming, I became frustrated and decided to lie about it.

I was too embarrassed to admit I couldn’t even make an invisible friend. I thought if there was no way anyone else could see it, I should be able to say whatever I want. How would they know what my imaginary friend looked like? Or how many there were for that matter! I decided to do it big and say Care Bears came to be my friends.

Everywhere we went, I made my parents hold doors open long enough for all the Bears to pass. When I watched tv, I had to leave enough space around me for the Bears. Although, for dinner I was forced to feed them invisible food.

If you like kids, you may have a cute image in your head. Maybe you’re picturing your own kid and find the notion endearing. Maybe to an extent, it was. From my perspective, it was incredibly stressful.

How long would it take for that many Bears to walk through a door? Would they know I was lying if I didn’t guess right? How many were there anyway? Could I try to count them on tv? Could I take notes, what if someone read them?

It drove me crazy. When I started school, I watched other kids carefully. I wanted to copy their behavior to blend in, but no one seemed to have an imaginary friend. I was too afraid to ask in case I drew attention to myself.

When it seemed safe to abandon the Care Bears, I stopped mentioning them. When asked, I realized I didn’t know how imaginary friends left their kids. What did they say? How did they leave? Did someone come to pick them up? I couldn’t blow it now.

I panicked, “they died.”

My logic: No matter what, it’s possible for anything to die. I didn’t expect to be asked how. “They had a tragic cloud car crash.”

But that wasn’t good enough, they wanted to know how they crashed. “Sadly, the car had blown up with everyone inside.”

That was all I had patience for. After that it felt like they were suspicious. I was too afraid to guess any further and screamed “I don’t know!”

Ok. As an adult who understands imaginary friends, I can see there’s a chance they may have been concerned with my choice in story plot. It probably isn’t normal for children to kill their best friends in violent explosions. If they were the type of parents to remember those things I would ask about it.

Wish I would have known about this guy sooner!

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