Yes, I had several. Now to all of you who are silently saying “Imaginary friends? Is she nuts?” I answer: 1) Yes, I am crazy. And quite proud. And 2) Come on, you know you had at least one too. From what I’ve gathered, having an imaginary friend is sort of a right of passage when you’re a kid. Some people may think that having friends who don’t physically exist is pathetic, and to them I say “BOY HAVE YOU EVER MISSED OUT ON SOMETHING GREAT”.
It’s not that I’m a social recluse and never had any friends. So sometimes I prefer staying home on a Friday night with a good book and a hot chocolate; that doesn’t mean that the only reason that I had imaginary friends was because I felt lonely
(and let’s not even talk about Monday nights, when I am unreachable due to the amazing sport of football).
I got my first imaginary friend when I was pretty little, no more than 8 years old. I was reading Phillip Pullman’s His Dark Materials (you know, The Golden Compass and all that) and was fascinated by the concept of a dæmon, a creature that was essentially part of the person and from whom they could not separate from without great pain. So I decided that if Lyra and Will had dæmons and were the best heroes ever, logically if I had a dæmon I would be an amazing person as well. HA. I named my dæmon Manta. Why? Well… Because at the time I had an obsession with manta rays, or as I called them; sea pancakes. The fact that mint ice cream is my favourite flavor of ice cream also contributed to the name. I was young and innocent, don’t judge. At least, don’t judge harshly. Manta was there when I needed to babble to someone and I didn’t have The Mostly Confused Teenager to ramble on, when I was waiting all by myself for my always-late mom in the rain after school, when I wanted to make fun of my brother but no one was around. Plus, if someone asked me why I was talking to myself, I could always answer that I was actually talking to my imaginary friend, before staring at them with a mixture of befuddlement and disdain.
My second imaginary friend is one that is slightly/waaaay weirder than Manta ever was. His name is Fish, and he’s been my friend for so long that I can’t even remember when I started talking to him. This is awfully embarrassing to write, so I’m glad that not many people that I know read CT’s long winded blog posts. Still I hope that they don’t stop interacting with me because I’m such an absolute weirdosomething. See, I can only talk to Fish when.. um.. a toilet paper roll is finished. A roll with no more paper on it is the telephone that I use to contact him, at which point our conversations go something like this: “Hey Fish! How are you doing? I’m fine Fish, yeah. Ok so seeya Fish.” Now that I think about it these conversations are actually monologues. *sigh*
Still, my imaginary friends never socially hurt me
(until now, I hope that this confession doesn’t The MCT’s death warrant). In fact they were a formative part of my childhood and made me into the person I am today. Whether that is a good thing or not I can’t tell 😉 Nonetheless they fostered a singular creative ability and view of the world for which I am eternally grateful. I’ve grown up a lot since the times when I heatedly debated with Manta on my brother’s level of silliness, but I haven’t forgotten the friends who helped me through some odd as sh*t days.
So parents, stop worrying because your kid has an imaginary friend, and kids, be proud! You’ll understand how a thought and/or dream can seem so real that it turns into something that you’ll cherish for the rest of your lives. Ladies and gentlemen, that is all. Peace out.
Live long and prosper \V/
The Mostly Confused Teenager.