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Trying Everything To Stay Strong

Five-year-old Leara opened her big, bright blue eyes and quickly hopped out of bed. “Mommy! Daddy!” she shouted, grabbing her barbie doll and blanket, dragging them both out of her room and into the hallway outside her bedroom. She looked around and ran up to her parents’ room. She put her ear up the the door and listened, only hearing the steady breathing pattern that was oh-so-familiar to her. "Still asleep," she thought to herself, her usually bright facial expression turning into a pout. She ran back to her frilly pink room that was dotted with flowers and threw her doll back down on her bed. She frolicked happily up to her closet, humming a happy tune. She opened up the doors and saw her forgotten toys from her last session.

Leara spent most of her childhood days in her closet. It was a simple closet; it was a walk-in one, so she could easily shut the door, sit down, and shut everybody out. She stuffed all of her barbies and plush animals into the crammed spot every day, and she would just hide in there. She’d shut the doors and sit down, taking a flashlight out of her secret compartment and position it so she could see everything clearly. Leara was an only child, and she often felt lonely and sad. The only thing to keep the young child from breaking down every day was to sit in her closet and play with her only friends, her dolls.

Leara ran back to her bed and grabbed the barbie from her bed. “Of course I wouldn’t forget you, Sydney!” she said, putting the doll to her ear as if she was talking to her, then responding happily. She skipped back to the closet and spread out her blanket, stepping into the dark closet and shutting the doors. She flicked on the flashlight and picked up a boy doll and a girl doll. The girl doll was special; it was supposed to represent her. It had long, blonde hair just like hers, and sparkling blue eyes. She even made a dress for it out of newspaper.

“Leara, I love you!” she made the boy doll say, as she brought the two dolls together and made kissy noises. Then she picked up a big pile of girl dolls. “Leara, I can’t believe you’re dating Brad McLarion!” the girl dolls swooned. She made the Leara doll stand proudly and happily. "I wish I had real friends like that," she thought sadly as she felt a tear trickle down her face. She sniffled and wiped it off her cheek, when suddenly she heard the door to her room creak open. Quickly, Leara clicked her flashlight off and shoved all of her dolls and toys into the corner of her closet as she put a laundry basket face-down over it. She ran out of her closet and saw her mom, trying her hardest to smile. “Hi, mommy! I was just picking out my outfit.” she said, shutting the closet door urgently as she spoke.




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