A few weeks ago, we lost Woobie. If you have ever met Grady, then you have most certainly met Woobie. Woobs was more than a security blanket. He was Grady’s pal. His hat on a rainy day. His napkin. A towel for drying off the dog. An eraser. A snuggle buddy, and so, so, much more. When we noticed Woobie was missing, we retraced our steps extra carefully. Woobie could NOT be lost! No way, no how. It would be more likely that Grady’d be missing an arm than missing Woobie.
He had definitely gone to bed with Grady the night before. We realized he was missing at 10am the next day and we hadn’t left the house. This would be a piece of cake! Of course we’d find him. He hardly ever went missing, and never for very long, and we knew he was in the house somewhere. BFFs don’t just disappear, right?
We tore the entire house apart. We were shoulder-deep in the trash. We looked in drawers that Grady couldn’t possibly have reached. We peered into crevices that he couldn’t possibly have found. We searched in places too ludicrous to even consider (freezer, behind the dryer, under the bushes in the back yard).
By bedtime Grady was a blubbering mess of sadness. And of course he was…Woobie was his everything. And for those of you who say “always buy two so that if one goes missing…” trust me–I had that angle covered years ago. The problem is, he always knew which one was the “good” Woobie. The impostor is too fluffy. Lacks ketchup stains. Conspicuously smells like laundry detergent instead of dog. HE’S NOT WOOBIE.
I know both of my boys are arriving at the age when life will start to do crappy things to them. I just wish the first victim of life’s unfairness wasn’t Woobie. Because Woobs should be there to help him feel better when all the other lousy stuff happens. Of course he’ll manage without a security blanket, as we all eventually do, but seeing him without it makes Grady seem a little older. And as my youngest, it makes babyhood even more fleeting than it had been, which bums me out. Years from now, I’ll probably find Woobie stuffed in a heating duct and be filled with heart-bursting joy. I’ll run to Grady and hold out Woobie, triumphant, and Grady will be too old to give that scrap of fabric more than a passing glance.
Grady is not a sensitive kid, but he’s been feelin’ it hard for Woobie. Even now, a month later, sometimes he’ll sigh and say, “Mommy, I’m just sad about Woobie,” and I feel a knife in my heart. All I can say is, “I know, buddy. I miss him too.”