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Meet Mouse

It has been on my mind for a while now to share this with all of you, and having just written about Friendship at (the age of) three, I think now would be ideal.  You see, friendship isn't always what meets the eye, and I'd like to introduce you to Mouse, Calvin's very special, very invisible, friend.  Mouse has been part of our lives for a few months now, and his presence kind of snuck up on us.  When Calvin first mentioned him I lumped him together with all the other imaginary beings, usually animals, that Calvin had cared for briefly on a regular basis over the past year or so.  It had not been uncommon to hear him fixing meals in his kitchen for the "mama chickadee" or the "daddy finch" or the "baby bunny" but a few things should have stood out to me from the beginning: first, that Mouse was, well, just Mouse, not a mommy or a daddy or a baby; and second, that "Mouse" appeared to be a moniker as opposed to a species (Mouse, according to Calvin, is big, and, other than his gender, that is all I really know about him).  But even if those things weren't unusual about Mouse, his recurring nature, visiting our house or our conversations almost daily over the past few months, has set him apart in our minds as that childhood gem–the imaginary friend.  And let me tell you, I love Mouse–he's everything an imaginary friend should be: Calvin cooks for Mouse when he is hungry, tucks  him in when he is tired, makes sure he gets his medicine when he is sick, and his vitamin when he's not;  Calvin comforts Mouse when he (Mouse? Calvin?) is afraid, and encourages him when he is frustrated; When Mouse wants to do things that are dangerous (ride in the car without his seatbelt) or bad for him (eat a doughnut) Calvin admonishes him and offers a better choice.  But, you ask, how do any of those things make Mouse a good imaginary friend?  They don't.  They make him the perfect imaginary friend because Mouse is clearly helping Calvin mirror the good values that he (Calvin) sees in the world, and work through the things that he (Calvin) is most concerned about.  And the best part is that he is not doing it alone...and yet, he is.

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Reader Comments (2)

Wonderful - - - absolutely wonderful !

The friend, the meaning behind it AND the writing.
August 26, 2009 | Unregistered Commentermom
When Jon was in high school he had an imaginary friend--a 6 foot 3 1/2 inch rabbit named Harvey--when he played the role of a middle-aged man named Elwood in the wonderful play Harvey. Elwood's fictional mother told him you have to choose to be either smart or pleasant in life and he had decided to be pleasant. I always told Jon he was both.
August 27, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterGrandma O

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