Have you ever imagined a life where all you do is play? A life where you have absolutely no worries. Where you spend all of your days and nights with your very best friend. That’s my life.
My name is Abigail. I am 5 years old, and my very best friend is Hallie. She’s 6 now. I’ve known her my whole life, and we do everything together. We play hide-and-seek, dress up, play pretend, and share our secrets with each other.
I’ve always felt as if I wasn’t whole without her around. You see, I don’t have parents, and she’s my only friend. I don’t have a home of my own, and she’s always happily welcomed me into hers. Her parents never seem to mind, but they haven’t ever said anything to me. I’m too nervous to start a conversation, so I just stay in her room until she’s ready to play.
Hallie has a recital at her school today, so she’s told me to wait here for her. I wish I could watch her perform. She has a beautiful singing voice, and loves to be the loudest. We have concerts in her bedroom all the time and perform for all the toys she has.
She’s back, and I hear her parents talking to her about all of her activities this week. She has piano lessons, rehearsal for her next recital, gymnastics practice, and a private tutor to help her with her reading.
She hasn’t come back upstairs to her room to come play with me yet. She’s singing her songs downstairs, still riding the high from her performance. I’m sure she’ll come through the door any minute.
As I continue to wait, I hear Hallie eating dinner with her parents. They are talking about school, laughing, and going over schedules for the week.
I can hear her finally coming upstairs!
“I’m sorry Abigail. I’ve been so busy today with everything that I haven’t had time to play with you,” she said.
“It’s ok. We can play something right now!” I all but shout.
“I’m kind of tired after everything. Can we play tomorrow?” Hallie says in a sleepy voice that makes me feel guilty for being selfish after she has had so much to do already.
“Of course. You need to recharge for tomorrow. I think we should go on an adventure,” I say as if I already have plans as to where we’ll go.
I wake up the next morning and Hallie is already downstairs eating breakfast. She didn’t wake me, so I naturally assume she’s woken in a good mood, ready to play. Before I have time to go down to meet her, I hear the door close and she’s gone.
Confused, I listen to her parents talking downstairs.
“I think she’ll have fun at the park,” Hallie’s mom says to her dad in a way that almost sounds like a question. As if she’s convincing herself of it.
“I agree. Hallie needs to start playing with real kids instead of imagining that Abigail girl,” her dad responds. As if I can’t hear him.
What does he mean, imagining? I’m Hallie’s best friend. We do everything together. Well, we did do everything together. Until she got busy with other stuff.
Is this why I can’t remember my own parents, or my own home? Is this why I have no other friends?
Has Hallie conjured me up in her mind, and that’s the only reason I exist at all?
Why has she gone to play without me?
I feel strange. Weak. Light. Empty.
Everything dissolves around me as I disappear from the bedroom I’ve always known.
I guess this means Hallie doesn’t need me anymore.