Blankie.

Recently, as my child was drifting off to sleep, I heard him whisper to his beloved blanket, “Blankie, no one knows how good of a blankie you are to me.”
This warmed my heart.  First because it’s just too cute.  If you could see his sweet, angelic face…  But also, I loved it because I can relate to it.  For I, too, had a blankie and no one understood how important it was to me.
As the story goes, one fine evening I was throwing a major tantrum at bedtime.  I kept telling my mother I wanted Buzzie Blankie and she, naturally, had no idea what I was talking about.  I don’t know how old I was, but I’m sure I couldn’t have been more than a year.  I tried to explain that it was the blanket that you went “buzz, buzz, buzz” with.  This apparently went on for some time, but soon she figured out that what I was referring to as my Buzzie Blankie was really just a cloth diaper that she used as a burp cloth.
When I was a baby, I spit up as many children do.  My mother used to drape a cloth diaper over her shoulder for protection.  These diapers were trifold and had a small seam, about 1/4″ or so that came out of one of the folds.  I would run my finger across it and somehow decided that was called “buzzing” it.  And somehow I decided that this would be a good thing to sleep with.  And somehow, my mother came to the conclusion that it would be ok to give me a cloth diaper to clutch in the night.  I guess she assumed I’d grow out of my need to buzz things as I drifted off.  Oh, how wrong that woman would be.
I kept Buzzie around for a really long time.  I still have a piece of the original Buzzie somewhere.  I say the original because she (yes, she’s a she) was replaced many, many times.  Those things do not hold up to repeated washings and buzzings!  Once they would get too holey or worn or dirty or just plain fall apart into dust, a new one would appear.  Unfortunately, new ones were too stiff and I’d often start breaking in a new one before I tossed the old one.  You can’t have a stiff Blankie, you know.  I don’t know where this endless supply came from, but I still remember my mom having a drawer with them in there and I’d just take a new one when I needed it.
I remember the first time I had to go buy my own package of Buzzies because my mother refused to continue buying them.  I went to Woolworth’s, headed up to the baby aisle (halfway through the store, before you got to the back part that was somehow shaped differently than the front, left hand side) and picked up a package.  Sure I got some weird looks, but hey, a girl’s gotta do what a girl’s gotta do.  My mother couldn’t believe I actually purchased new ones.  I think she thought by the time I was a teenager  this phase would have ended.
I will admit to having brought Buzzie to school in my coat pocket (Kindergarten) and once in my backpack (2nd grade, I believe).  As soon as I got home from school, if I was going to just be reading or doing homework or watching TV, I grabbed Buzzie to buzz to my heart’s content.  When I packed up for college, Buzzie came with.  And when, for 7 of my 8 semesters I was a commuter, I will admit that sometimes I brought Buzzie along for the ride.  Yes, to my college classes.  I brought my blanket.
I never brought Buzzie to work, though, that would be ridiculous.
The night I decided on a whim to move out of my mother’s house, I grabbed my pillow, a change of clothes for work the next day and, you guessed it, Buzzie.
The first night I was married, Buzzie was there with us.  Buzzie came on the honeymoon, too.
When I was gathering up my things for the hospital so I could give birth to my son, Buzzie was neatly stowed with my belongings.  Once the child was out and things were settling down, I asked my husband to fetch it from my bag.  At one point, I was holding my Buzzie and the nurse walked in.  I shoved it under the covers so she wouldn’t see this 30 year old woman, fresh to motherhood, snuggling her blankie in a hospital bed.  She said, “Don’t worry, you’re not the first to bring her blankie with her.”  That made me feel better.  And made me feel silly.
It didn’t make me get rid of the blanket though.
I was coming to the end of the final package of cloth diapers.  My current blankie was falling to shreds.  I had purchased some, ostensibly for my son, but none of them had the little seam.  I searched high and low, researched on the internet and tried to find the right kind, but I couldn’t.  Also, we were doing the whole co-sleeping thing and it was hard to hold my newborn and my blankie.  It looked like my days of buzzing myself to sleep were over.
I wrestled with this torture for a few days. It was hard to break the habit.  I can now say, nearly 5 years later, that I no longer need to buzz something so I can sleep.  I will admit though that if I happen to find a seam in an article of clothing that fits the bill, I will run my finger along it far longer than I should.  And I do have certain outfits I have been known (only to myself) to wear on days when I’m particularly anxious because I know exactly where the best seam is.  I’m sure people notice I still play with the seams of my clothes.  I’m hoping anyone who reads this won’t publicly call me out on this behavior if they see me do this.
So when my son told his blankie that no one understood their relationship, it wasn’t true.  I do understand it.  My blankie was there for me, too, when I needed comforting in the night.  And sometimes in the day.  And even though I know it’s silly, I won’t ever push him to ditch it.  As long as he needs it, he should have it and I don’t care what anyone thinks of that.
Hanging out, once again at Yeah Write (but on the challenge grid, because I can’t pass up a challenge).  Great writers, great people.  Check out the other posts and come back Thursday to vote for your favorites.
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51 Responses to “Blankie.”

  1. I had a binkie ’til I was six. All the doctors make us take our kids’ security stuff away when they are, like, two or something. This is a scary world–who doesn’t need a soothie?

  2. Jade says:

    Another classic.
    I’m really glad you could see the clear demarcation between bringing Buzzie to college, and bringing him to work 😉
    Also, this line – “Those things do not hold up to repeated washings and buzzings!” wins the internet today :)

  3. “Blankie, no one knows how good of a blankie you are to me.” Oh my gosh. That totally melted my heart.

  4. Wonderful story! I love cloth diapers and used them with my first kiddo. They’re so sturdy and make great rags; glad to know they have an even higher purpose!

    • Usually people asked me if my mom used them on my as diapers (thankfully no). Although dragging the thing around and sleeping with it probably didn’t make it much cleaner!

  5. Oh, Buzzie. I loved how this was a tribute to a lovey but also a love note to your son about how you would always be there for him. Nice, Erin

  6. christina says:

    “Those things do not hold up to repeated washings and buzzings!” < - made me snort. :D
    ok so confession time. i still buzz, apparently, too. only i call it “schnipp” (no clue if it’s spelled right- it means ‘cut’ in German) because i was a thumb sucker and “schnipper” of any soft fabric i could fancy- according to my mom. basically i take the fabric between my thumb and pointer or middle finger and pull at it. i can’t describe it much better than that and it’s not like i’m gonna do a video on it or anything! ;D just letting you know, you’re not alone with you Buzzing.

    • I can totally picture what you’re doing. And I’ve been saying “schnipp” since I read this. I’m glad I’m not alone. I suppose it’s a nervous thing, like people who play with their hair or tap their foot. I play with seams. :)

  7. um. i have two blankies. they are on my bed right now. my husband laughs, but doesn’t make me get rid of them. he knows not to mess with them either. :) my kids also know not to mess around with them. holy grail :)

    • That’s so great that you still have yours! I do miss mine sometimes. Though I will admit that if I wasn’t holding my son like he was a little stuffed animal, I don’t know if I would have found it as easy to give up!

  8. Gia says:

    Aw, sweeet. I maybe have a disgustingly old stuffed animal that I sleep with occasionally and don’t you DARE tell Boyfriend that.

  9. Wily Guy says:

    My boys are at the age that they don’t want to remember their comfort items now, but they are safely in the memory box.

    Nice that Buzzie has stayed with you.

    WG
    http://itsmynd.com

  10. I love when my little girl talks to her “silkies”. They are her comfort. So cute.

  11. Omg, that is too cute

  12. *sigh* Oh, I had a Buzzie. Mine was called Blanket. I loved her. She was soft and tattered and completely falling apart by the time I finally was able to part ways with her. She still lives at my parents’ house somewhere. And I still miss her from time to time.

    Great story.

    PS – Like Gia, I have a stuffed animal I still sleep with…I don’t think I’ll ever completely giving up having a stuffed animal. :)

  13. Delilah Love says:

    All of my kids have a lovey. The 3 youngest still sleep with their lovey’s every single night. I cannot imagine taking them away before they are ready. I had a bear that was my lovey and we lost him somewhere when I was around 4. I remember the heartbreak like it was yesterday. Your post hit my heart and took me right back to my childhood.

    • I had a doll that was VERY important to me as a child and I remember we lost her at the park one night. I made my parents go to every toy store to get a new one. Life couldn’t go on with out her! It IS heartbreaking!!

  14. Stephanie says:

    “Blankie, no one knows how good of a blankie you are to me.” Pretty much the cutest thing any child has said, ever. I had a blankie when I was little and I made my mom keep it in the freezer. For some reason I liked it to be cold.

    • A cold blankie! Yes! I loved when I’d first get in bed and she’d be cold. Though I never put her in the freezer! I think it’s awesome that your mother did it!

  15. Kathy Kramer says:

    I received a stuff lion from my grandparents when I was 5. This was right before I had my tonsils out. 35 years later, I still have that lion. :)

  16. Ado says:

    I loved this – I too had a blankie and nobody understood what comfort it gave me. It was w. me all the time. I was a thumb-sucker and would rub the blanket and suck my thumb. One day my mom threw it out – it was in shreds by then – oh, my, god. I still miss my blankie, but it’s reincarnated in the form of Ella’s blankie which has holes in it and she won’t be separated from it. (-: Great post.

    • So sad your mom threw it out! It didn’t matter how awful of shape my blankies were, I had to be the one to decide to part with them. Glad Ella will have hers as long as she needs it!

  17. Nice post. My niece is ten. She has this little blanket thingy with a rabbit head. She calls it bunny bear. It goes with her everywhere. I was thinking that at 10 maybe she was getting a bit old for it. After hearing your story I will not think that again. As for an adult buzzing herself to sleep or reducing anxiety – that’s a lot better than drugs, isn’t it?

    • Yes, definitely better than drugs! I have always felt that if kids need them, as long as they can function without them, then it’s ok. I mean, if I was bringing it to work daily, I’d say I had a problem. But sneaking it out a little, I think I’m only a bit of a freak, you know 😉 10 isn’t old. 10 is still a baby. Too many changes to navigate at that age to do so without a lovey.

  18. Melissa says:

    This post made me wish I had a blanket.

  19. Heidi says:

    I think this is so sweet. And I love that your mom had a steady supply of blankies for you and didn’t try to talk you out of it. So, so sweet.

  20. Anna says:

    I remember rubbing my fingers on my clown’s hat. It was so comforting. I had a few clowns, but there was nothing like the first one. Great story!

  21. My sister in law still needs something to “buzz” when she sleeps and she’s got a spouse and kids and all that jazz, too. My son likes buzzing stuff, too, but usually while he’s just hanging out. Not sure about bedtime.

    I really liked the part about in the hospital. You needed comforting, so you brought your best ally. Nothing wrong with that.

  22. Adrienne says:

    So sweet! So glad you understand your son’s blanky love. I love that the nurse at the hospital was nice to you. When I had my first my nurse was mean mean mean, and I didn’t even have a blanky. :)

  23. Pish Posh says:

    I gave up my blankie pretty quickly but my brother OMG could not let go. His “blankie” was actually a cloth diaper too and it was like torture getting that away from him. I do not envy this part of motherhood! Sweet story though!

    I love this story because one day your son will be saying this to a woman.

    • I’m of the mindset that as long as he’s not dragging it around like Linus from Peanuts it’s fine. If he wants to sleep with a blankie at 40, I don’t care. I’m sure he won’t bring it to school (he’s never asked to yet) so I’m not worried. Hopefully I’ll never need to take it away from him.

  24. Jackie says:

    Michelle, my younger daughter has a blankie with a dog head. The way you described buzzing the seams made me think of how she massages the fabric between her fingers now. I can only guess the feelings of calm you felt with yours, is similar for my little one.

  25. carrie says:

    I still have my blankie and my oldest child has his! I wonder if blankies are a first born child thing since my brothers never had one and neither do my younger children!

    I’m snuggled with my blankie right now…

    I had to replace mine recently because the other one fell apart in the wash…:'(

    • I am the younger of two kids. My brother never had a blankie and didn’t really sleep with stuffed animals either. I wonder though how family placement order is related to lovies. That would make an interesting study for some scholar!

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