When I was younger, I had a favorite stuffed animal. However, since I was young, I couldn’t pronounce my v’s properly. So my favorite stuffed animal was affectionately known as ‘My Beaber’. I carried my beaber everywhere with me. I loved the stuffed animal so much that I couldn’t part with it, no matter how many people tried to take it away from me. Cousins would always torment and tease me by playing keep away. But I knew the secret to getting my beaber back. All I had to do was cry, and the boys would quickly stop playing their games.
One night, I left my beaber outside in the yard. It was shortly after dinner that I realized that I left my beaber outside. Now, I should tell you that we used to live out in the country. Let me tell you when I say that it was dark outside, I mean pitch black. This was the kind of dark when one walks down a dark alley, and who knows what evil villains are lurking in the dark. However, this was the country, so those evil villains could range from scary monsters to zombies to ferocious animals with huge, pointy teeth! And to make matters worse? Dark storm clouds were rolling in. My beaber was going to get washed away in the rain!
But never fear! I knew what to do. All I had to do was cry, and I’m sure that my father would go outside; brave the dark and all the monsters that lurked in the shadows; beat the incoming storm and retrieve my beaber. After all, no one likes it when a girl cries. All the boys melt and do what I want when I don’t get my way.
Not my father. No, he had the audacity to tell me to go get it myself. Even with all my tears, my sobbing, and my pouting, my father refused to go get it for me. How could he do that to me? Didn’t he love me? And to think he had the nerve to ask me ‘If you love it that much, why did you leave it outside in the yard?’ Before I could even answer the question, he said ‘If you truly love your beaber, you would face your worst nightmares to have what you wanted most.’
Well, I would show him. I stomped right up to my room, slammed my door, and cried all night. Mom tried to comfort me. I could even hear them yelling downstairs. Mom knew the rule about what boys are supposed to do when girls cry. With each lightning strike and thunderous roar, my heart was breaking. My father didn’t care enough about me to go get my beaber. Didn’t he know he was supposed to do it? I loved my beaber. It’s not my fault I forgot about it in the yard. It’s always going to be there for me regardless of what I do.
Needless to say, when the morning came, I still didn’t have my beaber. Fine, I would just go get it myself and give my father the silent treatment. I’ve seen Mom do that many times. I’ve even heard her on the phone talking to other boys, making fun of my father though I didn’t understand everything she was saying. She could even make him sleep on the couch when she was truly mad at him. I couldn’t wait to have those powers. I was sure that Mom would teach me these powers when I got older.
When I went outside and looked for my beaber, I simply couldn’t find it. The storm must have washed it away. Again, I started crying. But now! Now, my father responded to my tears. He came over to where I was and asked me what was wrong. I refused to answer him. I simply crossed my arms and gave him a mean, pouty expression. With a furrowed brow and pursed lips, I just glared at him. I’ve seen mom give this look when she’s angry. Maybe it will work for me?
Not a chance in Hell. My father simply laughed and told me to go get the mail. I stood my ground. I was not going to let him make fun of me, like my cousins did. I was going to be just like Mom. She just had more practice at doing this. Though, I will admit when my father raised his voice and demanded that I go get the mail, I lost my resolve. The last thing I wanted was a whipping. Not that my father ever raised a hand to me, but the tone in his voice was intimidating enough.
So I walked down the gravel easement to the row of mailboxes. I would kick a stone or two along the way, pouting and mumbling some curse about how I wish my father would go away forever or how he needed to be left out in the dark with all those monsters. Let’s see how he would like it. That was my favorite stuffed animal, and he didn’t care.