My name probably should have been Linus, from The Peanuts, instead of Clara because I packed with my baby blankie everywhere with me until I was eleven years old. The front was turquoise blue with crazy colored jungle animals: there were pink lions, orange elephants, green hippopotamus, yellow monkeys, and purple giraffes. The back was bright orange and it was stuffed with the softest cotton batting. My Grandmother made it for me and from the day I was born it never left my side.
My blankie was my best friend, it was always there to make me feel safe, and to protect me at night. Most days we would play dolls together. Then sometimes when I wanted to be a super hero I would tie my blankie around my neck and we would run around the yard. It was even my parachute the day I decided to jump off of the roof of the barn. (That is a long story for a different day). At night when my Mom would tuck me into bed I would snuggle my blankie under my chin; as I was falling asleep I would rub its fluffy softness against my cheek .
It was there to protect me from my sister’s scary bedtime stories, thunderstorms, and the monsters under the bed. As long as my blankie was near me, I was invincible. As I grew up I stopped playing with my blankie. Even though I slept with it at night I realized I wasn’t going to be able to keep it with me forever. My sister teased me all the time that only babies sleep with blankies and my Mom kept telling me that I needed to throw that “old thing” way.
By the time I was eleven my blankie was looking pretty worse for wear. The batting was all balled up in clumps and there were holes in it where the material was disintegrating. This is when I finally decided it was time to store my blankie away not because I didn’t need it any more but because I didn’t want to destroy something I loved so much. I really missed my dear friend on the nights when the monsters and thunder storms seemed overwhelming. Unlike Linus, I eventually outgrew my security blanket but I never forgot it.
I still have it safely tucked away in a protective box under my bed, along with some other mementos that were important to me growing up. There have been times in my life that it would have been nice to have a built in friend that wouldn’t judge me for the way I looked or leave me behind if we had a disagreement; to have that warm sense of security to cuddle up with at night. If it were within my means I would make blankies for everyone because life is too short to not have one small shred of hope, an ounce of confidence, or a sense of security.