A Letter to My Son’s Security Blanket
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Hannah Southerland is a young mom of two little boys and a wife to one handsome man. She loves helping women in their marriages and motherhood and feels like community is the best way to make it through this crazy thing called life. She is the lover of all things coffee and chocolate. On the weekends you could find her snuggled on the couch watching “Fixer Upper,” or spending time with her family playing the very dramatic game of “Pictionary.”
I want to just take this opportunity to set the record straight on some things regarding you. I was never going to be “that mom”, I would boast (pre-kids) that my kids wouldn’t have anything that they would be attached to. Also, I did not want to break any bad habits and I was going to do my darndest to make sure I would not have to.
Well, here we are two years later and, like almost everything I said before I had kids. We do have something we are attached too, YOU! You entered our world very innocently. Also, we didn’t get you as a gift or as something to be cherished. No, I was the one that actually placed you in my child’s crib just to protect the sheet, and wouldn’t you know that’s how you came to be. I could not figure out why my baby loved being in his crib and would run to it anytime anything happened to upset him. I finally allowed him to bring you out into the real world, and you’ve been ruling our house ever since.
You have been a trooper, blankie, covered in mud, grime, foreign liquids, food; you name it, you have had it smeared on you. But Lord knows trying to wash you is a military operation that I have to coordinate and execute just so or the household goes up in flames. I have even been known to cut the wash cycle short to rush you back to the frantic child in the unfortunate event of an injury during your bath time. You never complain, though, you continue on with your duties as usual ready and waiting to be there for the next mission.
I thought a security blanket was only to help soothe a child.
I’ve found that you soothe the family just as much, and when we lose you all of the world stops turning until you are back safe in his little hands. I envy you, blankie. How do you do what you do? How do you know just how to soothe him? I would love to know. It is a physical and emotional transformation that happens when you are near, like everything could be wrong in the world and as long as you are nearby he knows he is going to make it through. I watch him with you and wonder how I might be the thing he cries for one day, while simultaneously being grateful it isn’t me.
Through the turmoil, searching, screaming and hassle that is trying to keep you close by, I feel more overwhelmed by a sense of bitter sweetness. I don’t want this phase to pass just as strongly as I can’t wait for it too. Watching you get loved by my youngest son and possibly my last child, I get hit with the impending freight train of the future. It is coming and we cannot stop it.
One day you will be left behind when he goes into Sunday School, a new friends house, or the car and instead of making sure you’ve made it safely back into his bag before we leave we will not even think about. It’ll be a transition like most things in childhood: it’ll go quickly and quietly. You won’t join us on the couch for family snuggle time, or be our ever present fifth dinner guest every night. You won’t be needed to go off to college with and you certainly won’t make an appearance on his wedding night.
I am not trying to be rude.
You have served us well for the 2 plus years, but, you will leave us and head into retirement, an overcrowded box that has his hospital wrist band, hair from his first haircut, my favorite jammies of his and his hospital paperwork. It will move from one house attic to the next. But maybe one day you will reemerge to comfort another little boy or girl who looks strikingly familiar to you and this will be a second chance to comfort and soothe once again, in the way only you know how.