A single tear snuck down my cheek. I was too scared to move to wipe it from my face so I let it slip down and land on Teddy. His soft fur soaked it up, and I hugged him tighter.

Teddy was my best friend. He was not just a toy, he was my Teddy Bear. We had been through a lot together. He was all I had, I was all he had, and it was my duty to protect him. We protected each other – wasn’t that what friends were for?

When I looked into his eyes I could see his love for me, his desire to protect me. He was more than just a stuffed bear, he was Teddy; my Teddy.

I dared not open my eyes for I knew I was surrounded by darkness. But if it was dark, maybe he wouldn’t be able to find me. I had crawled to my closet, trying not to make a single sound. I quietly shut the door and scooted back as far as I could. Quickly I tugged my baby blue Care Bears nightgown over my knees, and as I stroked Teddy’s fur, I whispered in his ear, “It will be alright Teddy, don’t be afraid.” My voice quivered at the end.

I was terrified, but I had to be brave for Teddy. I wouldn’t let him see how scared I was.

The sound of footsteps in the hallway near my door made my eyes clench tighter. I prayed that he wouldn’t come in the room but would just ignore me and forget I was there.

A loud crash like glass shattering in pieces made me jump. I heard his disturbing laughter, and he mumbled something but I couldn’t make out any words from his stumbling slur.

All of a sudden, it went quiet. I opened my eyes against the darkness and hugged Teddy tighter to my chest so that he couldn’t see the terror on my face.

The door of my room opened, and thick hard footsteps on my wood floor caused me to tremble. Instantly those footsteps came closer to the closet door. I shut my eyes real tight and pretended that I was not there. I was somewhere else, somewhere warm, safe, far away from there.

The handle turned, and the closet door opened slowly. It felt like hours sitting there, clutching Teddy like it would be my last.

Reluctantly, I opened my eyes and looked up to see the dark brown eyes of the person who neglected, hated, and emotionally tortured me over a mistake that changed both our lives forever.

But what I saw in his eyes terrified me more than anything had ever in the past. My eyes widened, and I suddenly felt a gut-wrenching terror when I realized that he wasn’t looking at me.

He was looking at Teddy.
NO!” I screamed as I clutched Teddy even tighter.

“Give me that stupid bear,” he drunkenly slurred. He ripped Teddy from my arms, and I kicked his shin as hard as I could. I had to save Teddy. He trusted me, only me. I couldn’t let the monster take him.

“Stupid little brat,” he said as he grabbed my arm tight. He shoved me back in the closet and slammed the door.

I grabbed my arm, which throbbed from being held so tightly. As I landed on the floor, pools of tears huddled in my eyes. I felt so sad and started to tremble.

“Teddy?” I struggled to get out. But Teddy wasn’t there. It was just me all alone…again.


As the overwhelming feeling of loss and sorrow came crashing down on me, it was enough to slowly stir my sleeping consciousness awake. I didn’t have to open my eyes. I knew I was just having the same nightmare I always had. In fact, instead of opening my eyes from the remembered fear, I closed them tighter and clutched my chest, while I balled my blanket up in my fist, burying my tear-soaked cheeks.

I was awake, it was over, and I waited for the leftover feelings from that traumatizing day that haunted my memories to subside. It was a long time ago. I’d grown since. It was silly for me to still be mourning the loss of that darned teddy bear. But still, every night, I relived that awful day in my dreams and woke up back as that helpless eight-year-old girl on her birthday. Eventually, I came to my senses and realized it had been over nine years since that day; I wasn’t that little girl anymore. But even still, it never failed to feel so real.

It was more than just the loss of a simple teddy bear.

Much, much more.