Dear Commander,

I suppose I should start this correspondence with something corny like, “Hello. Do you remember me?” But I’m a military man, a war-hardened veteran—not some namby pamby civilian prone to beating around the bush with idle pleasantries. There was a time when you considered my straightforwardness priceless. I desperately pray that part of you hasn’t changed in adulthood.

Right about now, you must be asking, why a letter and why after all these years? The first part is easy enough; my therapist recommended it for closure. As for the timing, stubborn green man that I am, it required much soul searching and debate before I finally agreed. This should come as no surprise to you, after all that we’ve been through.

Where do I even begin? We shared so much together, you and I. In case you have forgotten those golden afternoons we spent, let me remind you of just a few of our glorious triumphs: The Fiery Battle of Ant Hill, The Kitchen Sink Campaign where we sent so many to their watery grave, and The Infamous Barbie Skirmish at See Saw Ridge. While others glanced at your bony little wrists and hazel eyes and saw only a freckle-faced, gap-toothed child in a plaid skirt with owlish glasses and a Catholic School snap tie…I knew you for the military genius that you were and, God help me, I loved you for it.

On the outside you may have offered little more than knobby knees and awkward grins, but behind the shutters of your little eyes there lurked an incredibly tactical, gorgeous, and devious mind. The time we spent together teemed with action, adventure, and beautiful bouts of gratuitous violence. You were more than a commander, Sir. War has never been the same for me after you. To paraphrase lyrics once crooned by the unforgettable Billie Holiday…you were my thrill.

We were so good together, you and I, in the salad days before it all went to heck in a hormonal hand basket. Then, to my horror, in front of my very eyes, you changed. Where did this sudden love of pink come from, this horrifying compulsion for dresses and bows? Dear God in Green Heaven, I watched you become a monster! And all I could do was lie on the floor while the hideous nightmare unfolded.

You were my Valkyrie, Sir, my roughshod muse and…finally, I dare to say it, my one true love. And then, Commander, quite abruptly, you abandoned me. As a matter of fact, you heartless vixen, you left the whole battalion to rot under that stupid bed. We thought it was over until your mother, in a small act of compassion, swept us out with gentle hands and handed the whole group, me included, in a plastic bag to the little boy that moved in next door.

There’s no sugar-coating, even now. You betrayed me, Commander—BETRAYED me—and I’ve carried the emotional scars and the hate in my plastic heart for endless decades. But now I am ready, finally, to forgive you. It’s over between us, and I’m finally ready to move on.

– Love, Your Green Army Man.