Wednesday, July 14, 2010
My earliest memory has me standing in my parents' bedroom holding my white flannel bankie. I am leaning up against the black valet chair, the one my dad would sit in as he shined his shoes. I loved watching him do this ritual, reaching into the compartment in the seat where he kept all the shoe polish. The smell of the astringent polish, little bits of black getting on Dad's fingers as he worked. In this memory I am holding bankie and searching frantically for my pacifier--- an orangey rubber affair with a giant round handle on the end.
As the memory fades to an end, my thoughts of Bean roar into my mind's eye---- her Security Trifecta of Bo the Lovey (bankie), a stuffed buddy, and the ever-present paci. There isn't a question where she got this from, seeing as how Chip has no such memories of blankets and pacifiers (he was a thumb sucker).
I relate to Bean's love for these objects--- I get it. I understand that need to take a piece of comfort in your hands. I understand how encompassing a blanket can be, a friend to wrap around you when you're cold or sad or lonely or worried. I understand the way you can create an entire world of sweetness by putting the blanket on your head, surrounding yourself with the smell of home. I understand how its soft folds become softer the more you hold it in your hands and rub a corner of it on your face. And yes, I totally understand the paci.
The thing is... I'm finally ready to coach Bean out of the Paci Love. I've been fine with it for two+ years. But I just think it's time. Time to let it go, time to let it fade into memory.
But I'm not sure how.
I've talked to her about how it's soon going to be time to let go of the paci, that we will only use it for naps and bedtime (I'm willing to let a paci sleeptime routine continue for a while longer). And I've tried to get her to sort of forget about it for long stretches throughout the day. But.
Well, this is a stubborn child (wonder where she gets that from). A child with an iron will. A smart child who remembers things like hey mommy put my paci in her pocket and I know it's in there and maybe if I just sort of hang limp and boneless on her leg she'll relent and give it back to me. NOW.
So I'm turning to you. Whatcha got for advice about the Great Paci Phase Out? I'd love to hear your stories of what works and what doesn't, and the cautionary tales of things I should absolutely never try.