When I was two, my grandmother gave me the most beautiful blue bear I had ever seen. I slept with him, buckled him up whenever we were in the car. For my sixth birthday, she gave me two of the bluest bluebirds to my mother’s dismay.

Ophelia and Angel lived in my bedroom, often stretching their wings and singing from the top of my bookcase. In my mind my bear, bluebirds and me had exciting adventures. We would ride Ophelia and Angel over the highest mountains often catching three to four sunrises and sunsets every day.

When I was ten, my grandmother passed away and my mother remarried. I no longer leave my bedroom. The four of us spent the days practicing for our flight to freedom. One morning I awoke to find an illustration of simple birdcage with four figures inside my right wrist. If I was very still, the figures would move around the cage. They were as trapped as I was.

One early gray morning I discovered that the illustration had changed. On my left were the four figures starting on a new adventure. Ophelia and Angel stood my bed kneeling down. We were going on a real adventure, just like the ones in the picture! Bear and I mounted them and took flight. “Where are we off to?” I asked Angel. The wind carried an answer, “To the land of sunsets and sunrises.”

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