As part of the Operation, Map Guy and I decided it was time to donate some of our stuffed toys.
I was never a big fan of stuffed toys when I was a kid – I was a Barbie Girl (life in plastic, it’s fantastic) through and through so never really saw the point in them. You couldn’t dress them up, you couldn’t plait their hair, bor-ring.
Fast forward to my late teens and early twenties when my mental health was rapidly declining; Out of nowhere came the desire to cuddle a teddy bear. Call it a need for nurturing, call it regression, call it pathetic. But it was what it was and for a few years AS AN ADULT I found much comfort in my little blue bear, Sullivan. Why was he blue? Well, because I was too.
After those few traumatic years I grew stronger and I moved on from Sulli. But he never left; he just migrated to the bookshelf to watch over me. I think he may have even given the “evil teddy eye” to Olli, the new bear in town, who I cuddled every night of my pregnancy (the perfect bump pillow).
So when the time came today to part with Sulli, I couldn’t just chuck him in the garbage bag, it seemed so wrong. I had to cuddle him; kiss him; say thankyou and finally, say goodbye.
I then proceeded to wail like a banshee.
I cried so hard over a silly stuffed bear who was always losing fluff no matter how many times I mended him. A silly bear who has a half missing mouth because I used to twirl the cotton of his sewn-on smile. A silly bear who could barely sit up any more because years of teary cuddles had compacted all his stuffing. A silly bear who, for a time, was my friend.
I did for a minute consider taking him out of the bag and putting him back on the shelf, but the time had come for us to part ways. There is, after all, no worse fate for a toy than to sit on a shelf or in a box not being played with. Toy Story and Sarah McLaughlin taught me that.
Sulli has started a new chapter in his life now at the local Good Samaritans store. My hope is that he will bring joy to someone else. That someone will find him and take him home, and love him just as much as I did. As much as I do.
And I will start a new chapter of my life, too… right after watching this and crying some more.
Do you have any toys that you’re emotionally attached to? Or is it just me who projects characteristics on to inanimate objects?
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