As Thanksgiving memories recede, letting in the tidal wave of Christmas that swallows America, I have to express my thanks for two things: Teddy’s resuscitation and Joanna Leigh’s good report.
The Teddy thing is HUGE. He not only lives, he lives successfully washed. I was seriously concerned for his life. I thought he had coded.
I introduced Teddy about a year ago, here. He is what our counselor/child psychiatrist describes as a TO, a transitional object, important especially when a child is experiencing psychological separation anxiety.
He is important enough that Joanna Leigh would not allow me to keep him long enough to send him through the washer, and I became more and more frightened that he might be carrying the Bubonic Plague. At the least, I believed he was implicated in Joanna Leigh’s bouts with strep throat.
But the other day, she had on a new dress in several shades of pink, a purple plastic necklace, and a new bobbed haircut. Distracted by all this, she forgot and left him at home when she left for pre-school. I ran to the den to watch them actually leave the driveway. I gave them enough time to return for Teddy, but they didn’t. I hauled it upstairs and grabbed him with some throw pillows that needed washing, thinking they might cushion the blows from the agitator.
I checked him several times during the cycle to see if his guts were still intact.
He dries and lives.
And we have an appointment with our counselor this week – a good thing, as Joanna Leigh continues to suffer from this sorrowful grief from the loss of her mommy. And, by the way, I ain’t doing so hot either.
This weekend she had a rough time. Saturday morning she woke up fussy and whiny. Then she said, “I want my mommy.” She came over and got in my lap and I just held her for a while (and secretly cried).
Later we were driving through Holt, a partly scuddzy area known for drugs, when she said, “This is where my Mommy’s house is.” I said, “Honey, it’s not there anymore; your mommy had to move far away.” Then she said, “Then we have to go find her. I want to find her.”
We were on the way to a friend’s house, who invited her over to make a gingerbread house. What a treat! She invites some children over every year for their own special event for a few hours. She has some of the “building” done according to the child’s age and abilities. Joanna Leigh did well in decorating her house.
She wanted to adorn the gingerbread figure to be her mommy, rather than do two as Mamma Jo and Papa. As “mature” (HA!) as I am, it hurts my feelings, as well as makes me hurt for her.
That evening, I fussed at her for something, and she started crying. Then she started saying, “Mommy. Mommy,” through the tears. I said, “Your mommy is not here. You live with Mamma Jo and Papa, and you have to follow our rules. Mamma Jo is taking care of you because your mommy is far away.”
Yet the report last month from her counselor/psychiatrist was welcome news:
“Well, I’m giving you about as good news as I ever have. Joanna Leigh is doing well. Her development is on target and she’s bright,” said Dr. Margaret.
Enough said. There’s plenty of collateral damage with drug addiction.