Mazzy has a blankie named Boo. I’ve written about it so many times, I don’t want to bore you with the details again. For the uninitiated, you can read about Boo here and here and here.
For the people who always prefer the Cliffs Notes to the actual book, here you go…
BOO: CLIFFS NOTES VERSION: I made Boo out of two old purple t-shirts of mine when Mazzy was three months old. I used it to help ease the transition out of a bassinet next to our bed into a crib in her own room. It’s name was derived by Mazzy, as a shorthand for “Peek-a-boo”, since we often played Peek-a-boo with the blankie when she was a baby. Since then, Boo has become Mazzy’s most prized possession and constant companion. As Boo has aged, it has spawned many other Boos. Some that I recreated with new purple t-shirts and some because the older Boos have fallen apart into several pieces.
Here is Original Boo back in it’s glory days:
And here is Boo now:
Basically, Boo is a growing pile of rags.
Boo rarely leaves the house anymore, except when Mazzy goes on an overnight trip. Then she must choose which “piece of Boo” to bring along. She has never spent a single night in four years without at least one piece of Boo.
I have often said that if Mazzy had to choose between me and Boo, she’d take Boo.
The love is that big.
At least, that’s what I thought.
Last Friday, Mazzy suddenly decided she didn’t need Original Boo anymore and threw it away. Only she didn’t tell Mike and I about her decision until later that same evening, after we had already sent the garbage down the chute of our building.
Now here’s the irony.
Mazzy was totally fine with the separation. No regrets. She told us offhandedly, way after the fact, like it was no big deal. Why would it be a big deal to toss a dying rag?
Mike and I, however, were DEVASTATED.
“But…. I would have saved it!”
“Why? It wasn’t good anymore, Mom.”
She’s right. Original Boo was a shred of a shred of shred. And she still has several better, newer Boos.
But the one she threw out was the original. The first thing Mazzy slept with when we were too terrifiied to put anything but a sheet in her crib. I remember selecting the two t-shirts from my drawer— for both softness and color— and bringing it to the dry cleaner to sew into a blankie, back during my first maternity leave, when I rarely left the house.
How could Mazzy have tossed her lifelong friend so unceremoniously???
I posted on facebook about our loss. All the comments displayed equal devastation and suggested I take action.
And by “action”, I mean “dumpster diving”.
However, being that it was a Friday night, the trash room was locked. I called the super of our building and told him what happened. He said I wouldn’t be able to get in until Monday morning, but then I could search until my heart’s content.
Over the weekend, I became convinced that we would find it. How many apartments were in the building? How much could accumulate in two days? Everyone throws out their stuff in white kitchen bags, so I’d just have to identify which one was ours and go through that. How messy could it be?
On Monday morning, I found out that kitchen bags don’t often survive a trip down from the 12th floor. Ditto for floors 6 through 16.
Also, a maintenance person had come over the weekend, put all the recyclables in clear bags and combined all the “other” garbage in black bags.
Boo would be in an “other” bag.
“Other” also included spoiled food, coffee grinds, used tampons and dirty diapers.
IT WAS DISGUSTING.
This was garbage that had fallen several stories and then been combined with other fallen garbage. And somehow, it was all wet. Like all the garbage had been soaked in the river.
As I opened one bag after the other and determined each was not fit to even touch, much less GO THROUGH, I realized Boo was gone. Mazzy was okay with it and I would have to be, too.
I let the loss of Boo settle, left for work and moved on.
Later that evening, I returned home and Ruth, our nanny, met me at the door.
“I have something to show you.”
She led me into Mazzy’s room and pulled a piece of Original Boo out of the back of the top drawer.
I had totally forgotten. When Boo first spilt in two, Ruth had taken one half and put it in Mazzy’s drawer for safekeeping. At the time, Boo was rapidly desintegrating and putting half of it away seemed like a good way to double it’s lifespan. This was right before I decided to buy new t-shirts to make more Boos.
I took Original Boo out of Mazzy’s drawer and transfered it into the back of my own drawer. Right next to my good jewelry and cards I keep from Mike.
A few days later, when Mazzy decided yet another piece of Boo could be trashed, I took that piece and put it in the back of my drawer too.
Now, I’m the one stockpiling rags.
Mazzy might be realizing she is getting too old for her blankie.
But that doesn’t mean I’m ready to let my baby go.
What a great story.
My daughter doesn’t have a “Boo” but if she did I would be right there with you when the time came. Our babies get big much too quickly.
Yet another beautiful post. Seriously, I got goosebumps.
I have an extra Bunny (a donkey) hidden away in case Bunny ever gets lost. 4 1/2 years and I haven’t had to bring it out. I would cry now if the original Bunny was trashed. Ahhh 4-year-olds.
Love that story!
why am I crying?!? Because I can relate. Our daughter has “Pepee” the blanket, who has his own personality (and voice, created by her) and who has a sidekick, Tag (the tage on the blanket). Tag is a troublemaker; he often gets in trouble for hitting Pepee, he eats grass and chicken, and has claws not hands. Last week we were informed that Pepee had left town, and the blanket now attached to Tag was actually Aunt Pepee (who apparently is Pepee and Tag’s mom…?). My husband and I were legitimately sad. We asked every couple of days if Pepee was coming back-No. But then he did! He missed tag apparently, and now one side of the blanket is Pepee, the other is Aunt Pepee 🙂
This is very reminiscent of the ordeal I went through last fall, when my son lost his lovey at Target and they told us they shredded it.
We found a replacement – the daughter of a reader of my blog sent along her extra lovey to replace my son’s, which was adorable – but I almost regret not letting it go completely. These things are STRESS MAGNETS.
I’m almost more worried about losing my son’s lovey than I am about losing my son!
We were just out of town over the weekend at a hotel, opened up the suitcase and realized our oldest’s ‘pinkie’ wasn’t there. It too was her first real blanket, and I was almost in tears. My husband called the hotel and they found it. It will be arriving at our house this week. Best $13.75 spent to get it back. I was almost in tears and my heart was in my belly. Thankfully she likes another blanket she takes to daycare, so that is standing in until the real one arrives! Phew!
Both of my little ones have blankies. My son’s was once a beautiful white fluffy fleece (seriously, why would you make a WHITE blanket for newborns?) that he latched on to as a baby. My daughter’s is a purple, turquoise, and lime polka-dot fleece that my mom made for her. I would be devastated if they were to disappear. I’ve been reluctant to keep a bunch of baby things simply because I don’t have the space to do so, but the blankies I will keep.
You are such a great writer Ilana! Your post always give me happy tears I’m glad Ruth came to the rescue and you have a boo to save. My son has never gotten close to any stuffed animal or blankie, but I keep some onesies he used to wear a lot when he was a baby, and his hospital bracelet. They do grow soooo fast and I wanna keep some things that can make me vividly remember the times where he was so little.
I am very attached to my daughter’s beloved stuffed puppy, I would probably run into traffic for him if need be. When she is too big for him, he’ll go on a shelf. I still have my two childhood favorites on my bedroom bookcase.
Someday when she is in her 20s and feels even more grownup, you will pull out Boo and she will be thrilled.
My oldest, now 15 and way too cool to admit to any of this now, used to have “Bear Bear” a white, jointed bear that I purchased at the dollar store to use as part of a Christmas decoration. She acquired it and over time it became less white and more dusty gray. We tried to replace “Bear Bear” to no avail since the dollar store only carried the white version for the holiday season. So instead we got “Bear Bear’s” cousin, “Brown Bear” but the same level of love just wasn’t there. One day my daughter hurt her hand and needed x-rays. Not cooperating because she thought it would hurt the staff at the hospital decided to x-ray “Bear Bear” to prove that everything would be ok. To this day, 10+ years later, we still have that x-ray and I’m pretty sure both “Bear Bear” and “Brown Bear” are still hanging out around the house somewhere maybe even in her room, but she won’t admit it in public!
I am about to turn 36 and I still have “Blankie.” Blankie was knitted by my grandmother’s friend as a gift when I was born. I was completely Linus with my Blankie and my thumb. When I was stressed out I would pull fuzzies off of Blankie and run them around my face to calm down before sticking them in my hair. Blankie has traveled with me around the world and I would not have survived college without my buddy. Almost 36 years later, Blankie is now tied in knots to stay together and I have a mason jar of Blankie pieces which I just can’t bear to throw away. One of these days, Blankie will be in a shadow box with some pictures through the years. But for now, Blankie is tucked into my pillowcase and I still sleep every night with it up next to my face.
oh, gosh–i can’t even imagine. Our “Boo” is “Bunny”–a collection of dirty rags that still has a remnant of a bunny head on top. My husband and daughter actually traveled to see his family this past weekend, and I was SO nervous the whole time…about Bunny.
I took some artful iphone shots of Bunny before they left (just in case!), and every time they boarded the plane/exited the plane/left the house/breathed, I sent a frantic text saying: “DON’T FORGET BUNNY!!!!”
I always think of how upset my daughter would be if we lost Bunny. But the truth is, I’d be equally devastated!
awesome…. So glad that it had a happy ending!
I used to think my mom was crazy for saving my baby teeth from when I was little. After she passed away, I found all kinds of things like little notes I wrote and teeth, etc. I didn’t get it and trashed some of it. Now with a daughter of my own, I am saving every scrap of paper that she ever scribbled on. I totally get and am happy for you.
This is so sweet. It’s funny how the parents can treasure things we hope our children will. I still have my baby blanket and it looks horrible, but I still sleep with it beside me every night.
I still hold onto all of my son’s firsts too. I’ll probably turn into a hoarder, but it’s a hard thing to let go of.
Sweets has a “lamby”, which when it was given to her when she was born was a nice fluffy, white, soft stuffed lamb with a music box in its head. Now it is gray, scruffy, and the music box is what sounds like hundreds of pieces due to being swung around.
Sweets only takes it with her on overnight trips and when we are visiting open houses to ease the thought of moving. I am not sure when she’ll ever be ready to part with it.
Sarah doesn’t have a specific lovey yet- she really just wants “lamby” and will do anything to try and get it.
Glad you found a leftover piece! My mom still has a piece of the blanket my brother carried around until he was 7.
This makes me sad. In the years (years???) I’ve been reading your blog, I’ve heard plenty about her Boos. I see the signs of my children growing up, and it’s crazy how much joy and sadness come with it. And now I’m sad about a rag that a little girl I will never meet has discarded. Thanks a lot 😉
That just made me cry a lil. How sweet!
As a child I had “Silky” a small sateen quilt my great-grandmother had made for my oldest sister. That blanket went everywhere with me, I vividly remember sitting and watching it dry in the dryer before taking my nap as a 3 year old. Over the years it got packed away, and I hadn’t really thought too much about it. Well my mother passed away last year, and just a month ago my oldest sister brought me another box of keepsakes that had been sitting in storage. As I unpacked the box, sorting through old school papers and pictures, there sat “Silky” neatly folded in the bottom of the box, just waiting for me. Mazzy is going to love that you saved Boo, even if she thinks she too big for it now.
Is Monday always your day to make us cry?
And now we know where you keep your good jewlery. 😉
Ruth deserves a bonus for not only having the
foresight to save some of Boo in a safe place, but
also for remembering where that piece of Boo was!
My 11 and 10 year olds each have a stuffed dog ( Big Drew and Little Drew). They went to grandma’s house for spring break this week and for the first time ever they left Big Drew and Little Drew at home. It was a bitter sweet moment for sure.
You stinker! My kids are 8 and 7 and here I am reading and crying over BOO! We never let go do we? I think that’s ok. Can’t believe you dumpster dived though, that’s a new level of Mommitude.
Should not have read this. Makes me so sad for the day my sone gives up Blanks, his small blue blankets. I have two of them one for home the other for daycare, but those milestones of independence, it goes way too fast.
I still have my mrs. Bear and blankie from when I was a child…I used to have two blankies and one was falling apart and my grandmother made me throw it away. I was devastated! My daughter is only 4 months old and I have no idea what she will cling to but as of right now I buy everything in twos just in case. One day Mazzy will appreciate you saving part of her original boo even if just to look back and reminisce 🙂
Like reading a Sci-fi movie script 🙂
Dang I’m a sucker for a happy ending.
Loved this one.
And I’d have done the same thing you did…
My son has a a now flat teddy bear named (very creatively) Snuggle Bear. I washed him this week and my son claimed that I would “wash out the snuggles” but he was still very loveable afterwards! I can’t imagine losing him because at 6.5 my guy still needs to firmly grip the bear to fall asleep.
Oh I love your last line! And it’s so true. My baby has an Ellie….four to be exact…each loved as much as the other…each there in case one is lost…except the entire family would be devastated if one was lost! She may be 10 going on 20 today but she is still my baby and she still needs all her Ellies to keep her safe and loved!
If only she had been called BEFORE digging through the garbage!
ME TOO to all of this!!
I love that boo is a collection of rags. Ha!
This is the best story ever!
This made me cry – so glad that you do have part of Original Boo. Our son has “Puppy”, which is one of those small blanket-like squares with an animal head and arms. A friend gave it to me when my son was 3 months old. Turns out Puppy was discontinued before he was given to us, so we are terrified if anything ever happens to him.
I shared Boo’s story with my husband and we both swear that if our son is ever done with Puppy, we’re storing him in our room in a safe place!
Hello I recently published a children’s book called Blankie Boo and Baby Makes Two . It is for sale on Amazon and Barnes and Noble. I would love to advertise on your site as I see so many comments here about children and their blankies. My daughters blankie is named Boo too and that is how I got the idea for my book. The book is written from the perspective of the blankie and how he feels when he gets to meet his baby.