We never leave a man behind

Our family has suffered a terrible tragedy. Honestly, I’m not sure how we’re going to survive it. I know we’ll put one foot in front of the other, we’ll muddle through. I mean – that’s just what you DO. But it’s not going to be the same.

Bunny … is gone.

My daughter has a stuffed Rabbit. She calls her Bunny. If you ask her Bunny’s name, she’ll tell you that Bunny’s name is “Rabbit”. Bunny is Emma’s best friend.

Bunny was given to Emma as a baby gift when she was in the hospital. She was a creamy white color with that luminescent sheen that makes you go “awwwww… do babies really play with this crap?”. She had a ribbon around her neck and a pull string that would play That Lullaby That Everyone Makes Up Their Own Words To when pulled. Bunny was placed in Emma’s crib despite the Stuffed Animals Will Kill Your Baby rule… because it seemed to comfort her.

Emma has slept with bunny every night since.

More than that, she hauls bunny with her everywhere. Sometimes she carries her by the neck, and sometimes she cradles her in her arms like an infant and rocks her back and forth while whispering to her “shhhh… shhh.. is’ok”. She takes her for walks in her doll stroller, and lays her down for ni’nigh in her bed beneath her covers.
Needless to say, Emma absolutely must take bunny to day care with her. She’s required to take naps, and bunny is a part of the requisite Nap Materials.

Yesterday when I went to pick Emma up, she started to walk out of the building without bunny. Knowing the catastrophe I would encounter at bed time later that night if bunny was forgotten, I stopped and sent her back to her classroom to retrieve bunny. Except – bunny wasn’t there. Not in the cubbies, not in the nap closet, not in the bathroom, or in the pile of stuffed animals.

We looked for twenty minutes before giving up with the hope that maybe bunny had been left at home. We got home and searched every room and normal hiding spot… and still no bunny.

I had to take Emma to day care this morning without bunny. She just didn’t look… right. She asked where Bunny was… if Bunny was waitng at school for her. Her brother (and later her father) commented that maybe this wouldn’t be so bad because now Emma could finally “grow out of” her attachment. Which, OK, may be true.

But Bunny was her instant safety. Whether she was sad or scared or nervous or tired or sick or angry, all she had to do was call for “MBuuuuunnnny”, and once he arm was safely wrapped around bunny’s neck, she was soothed.

How great would it be to have one thing that could instantly make the whole world better, no matter what. One thing that you could count on that with just one touch everything really would be OK. You’d be centered and grounded and content – just like that.

Why does she have to grow out of that now?


UPDATED!!!! Bunny has been rescued!!!

Sorry I didn’t get to update this sooner.  Friday night when I picked Emma up from daycare, the administrator handed me Bunny.  She said…

“I don’t know where Emma could have hidden it.  I just walked in one of the rooms today and there it was, laying in the middle of the floor.  I put it away so it wouldn’t get lost again – but I’ll watch to find her “hiding spot”.”

In all honesty, Emma helped tear that place apart so it seems unlikely she had hidden it.  But, whatever.  I was just soooo glad to have Bunny back.  And Emma saw it and her whole body shook like a little puppy she was so excited to see it.

All is right with the world again.  (and needless to say that I at least have a much better appreciation for the importance of Bunny)

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