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Sincerely Yours, Teddy
I don't know if you remember me.
I certainly remember you.
I remember the day I came to you.
You threw me halfway across the room,
Displeased that I wasn't a remote-controlled car.
For a week you ignored my existence
(I must say, that stung),
Until one day you looked straight at me,
And in your childish pronunciation you said,
"Ok Teddy. Stop staring at me like that
And I might just be your friend."
I swiftly wiped any sad expression away
And from that day on we were best friends.
We went everywhere together:
To your overly-loved Candyland,
To the dinosaur time,
And to countless adventurous worlds.
At the end of the day,
When we were both covered in mud and dirt,
We'd take a bubble bath,
Complaining when the soap went in our eyes.
We would listen to Mom telling us bedtime stories,
Then I would watch you fall asleep
With great satisfaction and delight.
I never slept much, if you didn't know.
Most nights I stayed awake,
Guarding your rosy face from fear.
The next day we would always be the first up,
Eager to run outside and find bugs
And perhaps a prized garter snake.
The days blurred by so happily.
Until your first day of school.
I was just as excited as you
As we waited at the bus stop,
And I accompanied you into your first class.
Then the bully came.
He threw me on the ground and pushed you,
Calling you a baby when you cried.
Everyone laughed and I can remember my shame.
After that day, you left me home
When you went to school.
I remember waiting impatiently
During all those long hours for you to come home.
Sometimes you would come back crying,
But I never laughed as I soaked up your tears.
We would always play after though,
Gambolling off to your swing set
To play Pirates or Pilots.
I remember one day after a snowstorm,
We went and built a snowman taller than you.
Eventually the school year came to an end,
And the golden, long days of summer
Returned to our utter delight.
That was the summer that Dad left.
He had been getting into a lot a fights with Mom,
And one day after an especially bad fight,
He took his car and some clothes and left.
You kept asking Mom when he'd come back.
She never answered.
I miss Dad still, you know.
Soon enough, the new school year rolled around.
I went back to the old routine
Of waiting for you to come home.
Without you, everything was grey and dull.
One day, the moving trucks came.
We laughed and ran around all the boxes,
Pretending to be stowaways on a ship.
Mom told us we were moving to the city,
Where her new work was.
Tearfully we said goodbye
To the swing set and sandbox,
Then we drove away forever.
Our new apartment was small and cramped,
And we always had to be quiet
Because our neighbours complained.
You changed schools, and even made some friends.
They started coming over
And their toys were really cool.
Slowly, you forgot about me.
The first night you didn't come to find me
As you usually did was painful.
The cold floor was hard and for once,
I was the scared one.
It only got worse from then on.
You didn't play pretend anymore,
So you didn't need me. You had video games now.
I took up residence at the back of your closet,
And there I lay between the Tinkertoy and Kinex.
Days stretched into weeks and months,
And those months added up to years.
Occasionally I would hear yelling,
And a few times something smashed.
You never came back for me though.
Then, years later, your closet door opened
And I saw a stranger peering down at me.
He picked me up gently, his eyes misting slightly
And full of sadness. His voice was deep
As he spoke to me. "Hi Teddy."
It was you! But what had happened to you?
I hardly recognized you;
You were taller than Mom now.
I tried to say something, but nothing came out.
You shook your head as if to clear away the sadness
And put me in a box marked "Garage Sale".
Were we moving again?
You brought me outside to where other boxes
Were lined up on the ground or on tables.
People were taking things out of them.
I watched my closet companions,
Tinkertoy and Kinex, get taken away.
I was confused. What was happening?
I was so preoccupied that I didn't notice
A young, bright-eyed boy staring at me.
I jumped as he picked me up
And ran over to his mother.
"Mommy please?" Please what?
The mother laughed and asked you, "How much?"
You gave an answer, I can't remember what,
And the mother handed you something.
The boy holding me jumped up and down,
Laughing with joy. "Your name is Charlie!"
He said to me. Charlie?
That wasn't my name.
I still couldn't figure out what was happening.
"You're mine now," the boy said,
Stopping my plush heart.
WHAT?!! I twisted around to look at you,
Wondering how you would allow this.
Your face remained impassive.
The boy led me away, but you did nothing.
I watched you until you faded from sight.
Then I broke.
Even the boy carrying me noticed.
My ebony eyes lost their shine
And my brown fur lost its softness.
I realized finally that I had no place
Left in your heart.
You had broken rule number one:
Never grow up.
But as this strange boy led me away
From everything I had ever known,
I forgave you.
I will never forget our childhood,
Nor how much I loved you.
You are, and always will be
My best friend.