When I was a little tyke, I had an imaginary friend named “Deenie.”
Deeinie and I were inseparable. We went everywhere together and did everything together.
My mother would ask me how he was doing and would pretend to see him and talk to him. But she never looked at where he actually was, she always looked in the wrong place. Deenie and I would laugh about that. I suppose that happens alot with parents when they talk to “imaginary” friends.
One place in particular we loved to hang out was in a stand of woods close to my house. We built forts, beat back attacks by wild indians, searched for lost gold in the Amazon jungle, hid from hungry dinosaurs and planned the overthrow of civilization as we knew it.
One day Deenie told me that he had to go and that he wouldn’t be back, at least in the way he had been. I don’t remember why he said he had to leave, but I do remember that it made sense.
Then he was gone. I told my parents that his house burned down and that he left.
As I grew up and had my own children, I began to understand how silly a child can be with their imaginary friends. I understood that it was just their imaginations developing in a rational manner. Once sufficiently at ease in dealing with the world around them, they would jettison the “tool” that was helping them adapt and step into it on their own.
What if Deenie wasn’t imaginary?
Five decades later I find myself thinking about Deenie again. Often.
Could it be that something else occurred?