I assume that you have heard of the story the
Velveteen Rabbit. If
you have not, it is the story of a little stuffed
bunny rabbit who
dreams of being Real. To his owner, a small boy, the
perceived to be Real, because the Boy loves him so
much. He gets
older and shabbier but is content with knowing the Boy
believes he is
a Real rabbit. When the boy falls ill with scarlet
fever and the
velveteen rabbit must be thrown away, a fairy comes
and tells him
that because of the boy's love for him, he could now
be turned into a
physically real rabbit.
Why I mention this tale I explain now: I am a junior
in high -
school, and one day during my semester exams I was
rather tired and
depressed. It had been a long, wearying week and I
needed to talk
with someone, anyone... just to get my mind off of the
tests, which I
was sure I had done poorly on.
So, after school, I walked down to the student
office, and sat down with one of the counselors. He
was a real blast
to hang out with, and every student liked him. When we
talk, I realized my heart really wasn't in the
conversation. My mind
wandered back to the exams... to a doctors appointment
I had the week
before -- anything but the cheerful subject we were
He paused in conversation and looked at me. We began
talking now of
more serious subjects: a few health problems that I
have, a fight I
had with my mother the day before -- things that were
After a few minutes of this, he asked me a very
"Do you think you are real?"
I was taken aback. What could he possibly meant by
that? I pressed
him for an explanation, and what he said was
basically, he was
hearing all of the things that had an impact on me,
didn't hear about things that I was taking part in or
difference in. He likened it to the story of the
did i think that I was real to the people around me,
importantly to myself.
To my surprise, I found it very hard to answer his
instantly or honestly. A few months later, and I am
about it. It made me wonder that, if I couldn't tell
if I was "real"
or not, what other people believed about me.
It makes you think: Do you have enough of an effect on
around you as you would like to?