A young girl, a child, with pale blonde hair and eyes as black as coal runs up to me. Her looks and the black dress remind me of someone, but I push all this aside. This girl takes me somewhere, and suddenly – I stop her.

I have the feeling we’ve been playing together for hours in what seem like minutes.

I ask her a simple question: “Where are we?”

Her crescent smile wanes away, and she no longer looks at me. She turns to the passerby as they walk somewhere far off I cannot see.

“This is a dream,” she responds. Before I can say anything, she adds. “This place is not real. These people are not real.”

I suddenly snap my attention to the people, two parents holding their child’s hands.

“These people…they don’t exist. They have never existed.” The girl’s voice grows louder, more frustrated yet heartbroken. “Their children don’t exist! Nothing her exists!”

With the knowledge that this is a dream, I control it, changing the scene to a peaceful sky before the girl continues, but no matter how hard I try, I can’t change it back to her so she can finish.

That girl was my imaginary friend. I made her up when I was eleven. She was one of my best friends who I talked to before going to sleep. Her name was Clare. She had many secrets, deep dark secrets that troubled her.

But then I forgot about her. And she never came back, but that night?

On that night, she reminded me that everything in my head – all the things I make up – are all fake. They’re not real. They never will be. In other words, dreams are dreams until you turn them into reality.

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