Our Favorite-Stuffed-Animal Crisis

September 29, 2008 by
Filed under: dc metro moms, Toys 

After a perfect evening celebrating our wedding anniversary last Saturday night, my husband and I drove out to my parents’ home on Sunday morning, 35 minutes away, to pick up our Little Man.

My son loves his ‘pajama parties’ at my folks and always brings a few essentials besides clothes and pjs: his favorite blanket, his favorite pillow and most importantly, his favorite stuffed animal: Winnie-the-Pooh.

He has been sleeping with this Poohbear since he can remember. Well, not actually… we have replaced ‘this Pooh’ many times due to vomit, bits of food, mucus (ugh, I hate even typing that word), saliva. I tried to wash him one time in the washing machine, that went okay, but then I put him in the dryer and he came out smelling burnt: don’t try this at home.

But his current Pooh, which he thinks he’s been sleeping with since the day he was born, is always around and frankly, has reached the status of a good friend.

That said, we had a wonderful Sunday, played outside and were busy with games til bedtime. Ahh, a great weekend.

We were putting our Little Man to bed when he asked,

“Where’s Pooh?”

“I’ll find Pooh,” and I went downstairs, scanned the living room, the playroom, the kitchen, his bathroom. ‘He must be downstairs in the basement’ I thought, and I quickly trotted downstairs to the basement playroom, which is ALWAYS where things are when I can’t find them.

I looked around… No Pooh.
My throat started to feel tight. No Pooh.
“Pooh must be in the car.” I yelled up. He had to be. He had to be. Please be in the car. Please be in the car.

My husband ran out to the car, came back in and our eyes met, “Pooh’s not there; we left him out at your parents.”
My heart was up in my throat by this time, all the while I’m thinking,
“We couldn’t have left the most important stuff animal in the world at my parents. That would be such a rookie mistake, laughable even.”

But no one was in a laughing mood. We ran upstairs to my son’s hopeful eyes. Even he was thinking, “We couldn’t have left Pooh at Nanny and Pop’s.”

I called my parents. They hadn’t seen Pooh. Then my mom’s voice broke,
“Oh no, we left him in my car; that’s why we haven’t seen him and it didn’t occur to any of us that he’d been left.”

In the next 5 minutes there was crying, not tantrum crying or ‘I’m just making a point and I’ll get over this crying’; it was ‘I am so incredibly sad’ crying. My son has never been without his Pooh to sleep. A phone call later and my husband was in the car, my dad was rushing, with Pooh in hand, in his car; they would meet halfway.

So I rocked my 4-year-old son and sang to him as he calmed down, knowing that Pooh was on his way. I hadn’t stopped mentally banging my head against the wall with thoughts of ,”Idiot! Rookie mistake!” until we got the call about 20 minutes later that the exchange had been made. My husband and dad pulled their cars along side each other, Pooh was handed out one car window to the other outstretched arm.

Little Man said he was tired and climbed into bed. He insisted I stay with him until Pooh came home, so I got a pillow, laid on the floor beside his bed and we talked.

He stopped talking and looked over at me to make sure I was there and his eyes started to get heavy, fluttered a little and he fell asleep. I just looked at him. It’s beautiful to watch your son fall asleep (ah, in more ways than one). Man, he made it look easy, even after so much turmoil.

I heard the front door open and went to the top of the stairs. “Shhhhh,” my husband handed me Pooh without a word. I tiptoed back into my son’s room, leaned down, nudged him a little and said, “Here’s Pooh, he’s home.” Little Man opened his eyes just long enough to smile and exclaim in a whisper, “Pooh!” He snuggled up to the worn, aged, silly-old-bear, and went immediately back to sleep.

I wish all problems were that easy to solve…

My husband and I looked at each other downstairs: 45 minutes of crisis mode, tears, mentally bashing our lack of awareness- UGH. I still can’t believe WE ALL FORGOT POOH!

But: watching my Little Man fall asleep, laughing while comparing ourselves to Meg and Hamilton Swan in ‘Best In Show’ (“Where is Busy Bee? We have to find Busy Bee!”)-

to our son and all little ones having the ability to fall into a restful sleep almost instantly… priceless.

An abbreviated version of this can be read over at DC Metro Moms Blog.

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